Topics: AIX, Monitoring, System Admin

"Bootpd: Received short packet" messages on console

If you're receiving messages like these on your console:

Mar 9 11:47:29 daemon:notice bootpd[192990]: received short packet
Mar 9 11:47:31 daemon:notice bootpd[192990]: received short packet
Mar 9 11:47:38 daemon:notice bootpd[192990]: hardware address not found: E41F132E3D6C
Then it means that you have the bootpd enabled on your server. There's nothing wrong with that. In fact, a NIM server for example requires you to have this enabled. However; these messages on the console can be annoying. There are systems on your network that are sending bootp requests (broadcast). Your system is listening to these requests and trying to answer. It is looking in the bootptab configuration (file /etc/bootptab) to see if their mac-addresses are defined. When they aren't, you are getting these messages.

To solve this, either disable the bootpd daemon, or change the syslog configuration. If you don't need the bootpd daemon, then edit the /etc/inetd.conf file and comment the entry for bootps. Then run:
# refresh -s inetd
If you do have a requirement for bootpd, then update the /etc/syslog.conf file and look for the entry that starts with daemon.notice:
#daemon.notice /dev/console
daemon.notice /nsr/logs/messages
By commenting the daemon.notice entry to /dev/console, and instead adding an entry that logs to a file, you can avoid seeing these messages on the console. Now all you have to do is refresh the syslogd daemon:
# refresh -s syslogd

If you found this useful, here's more on the same topic(s) in our blog:

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