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The FreeRADIUS web site is at <URL:>, and
most information referenced in this document can be found there.
This is primarily for non-developers of the FreeRADIUS server. If you are
able to patch the code to work correctly, then we invite you to join the
development list to discuss it. If you're the type who know little about
how to code, then this is the place for you!
So you think you've found a bug in the FreeRADIUS server?
You should first discuss it on the users list, to see if anyone can
reproduce it. Often there's a simple explanation of why the server
behaves as it does, and it's not necessarily a bug in the code, so
browse the lists' archives of the last two months, and if you don't
see messages about it, ask!
If the behavior is correct but confusing, we think that's a bug too, and
you should file a bug against our documentation.
For more information about the users list, the lists' archives and the
faq, please visit
Please make sure to READ and RESPECT the house-rules. You will get much
better response and much faster if you do!
If the server, or one of the accompyaning programs core dumps, then
you should rebuild the server as follows:
$ ./configure --enable-developer
$ make
$ make install
and then run the program again. You may have to to enable core
dumps, via:
$ ulimit -c unlimited
When it core dumps, do:
$ gdb /path/to/executable /path/to/core/file
Enable logging in gdb via the following commands:
(gdb) set logging file gdb-radiusd.log
(gdb) set logging on
and follow the instructions in section 4, below.
If you can't get a core dump, or the problem doesn't result in a
core dump, you may have to run the server under gdb. To do this,
ensure that you have symbols in the binaries (i.e. a non-stripped
binary) by re-building the server as described in the previous
section. Then, run the server under gdb as follows:
$ gdb radiusd
Enable logging in gdb via the following commands:
(gdb) set logging file gdb-radiusd.log
(gdb) set logging on
Tell gdb to pass any necessary command-line arguments to the
(gdb) set args ...
Where the "..." are the command-line arguments you normally pass to
radiusd. Fo debugging, you probably want to do:
(gdb) set args -f
Then, do:
(gdb) run
When something interesting happens, you can hit CTRL-C in the
window, and you should be back at the gdb prompt:
And follow the instructions in section 4, below.
If the server was built with threads, you can do:
(gdb) info threads
Which will give you information about the threads. If the server
isn't threaded, that command-line will print a message saying so.
Then, do:
(gdb) thread apply all bt full
If the server isn't threaded, the "thread apply" section isn't necessary
The output should be printed to the screen, and also sent to the
gdb-radiusd.log file. Copy the log gile and mail it to the list, or
put it on a web page if it's too large. Include the name of the
operating system.
Without this information, it's impossible for anyone to know why the
program core dumped.
You can also submit the information to the bug database at:
Submitting it to the bug database ensures that the bug report won't
get forgotten, and that someone will eventually respond to it.
On Linux systems, "valgrind" is a useful tool that can catch certain
classes of bugs. To use it, run the server voa:
$ valgrind --tool=memcheck --leak-check=full radiusd -Xm
It will print out certain kinds of errors to the screen. There may
be a number of errors related to OpenSSL, dlopen(), or libtldl. We
cannot do anything about those problems. However, any errors that are
inside of the FreeRADIUS source should be brought to our attention.
6. Running with "screen"
If the bug is a crash of the server, and it takes a long time for the
crash to happen, perform the following steps:
* log in as root
* open a screen session (
$ screen bash
* make sure FreeRADIUS is not running
* make sure you have all the debug symbols about, or a debugable
version of the server installed
* configure screen to log to a file; 'Ctrl-A H'
* type 'gdb /path/to/radius' (or /path/to/freeradius on Debian)
* at the (gdb) prompt, type 'run -X'
* detach from screen 'Ctrl-A D'
* when you notice FreeRADIUS has died, reconnect to your screen session
$ screen -D -r
* at the (gdb) prompt type 'where' or for *lots* of info try
'thread apply all bt full'
* tell screen to stop logging, 'Ctrl-A H'
* logout from screen
FreeRADIUS Project, copyright 2008
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