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Debugging MariaDB Galera Cluster SST Problems: the Tale of a Funny Experience

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Debugging MariaDB Galera Cluster SST Problems: the Tale of a Funny Experience

Learn more about how to debug your MariaDB Galera Cluster.

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Recently, I had to work on an emergency for a customer who was having a problem restarting a MariaDB Galera Cluster. After a failure in the cluster, they decided to restart the cluster entirely following the right path: bootstrapping the first node and then adding the rest of the members, one by one. Everything went fine until one of the nodes rejected the request to join the cluster.

Given this problem, the customer decided to ask us to help with the problematic node because none of the tests they did worked, and the same symptom repeated over and over: SST started, copied few gigs of data, and then it just hanged (apparently) while the node remained out of the cluster.

Identifying the Issue

Once onboard with the issue, initially I just checked that the cluster was trying an SST. Given the fact that the whole dataset was about 31GB, I decided to go directly to a healthy solution: to clean up the whole datadir and start afresh. No luck at all, the symptom was exactly the same no matter what I tried.

After reviewing the logs, I noticed a few strange things. In the joiner:

joiner MySQL

2019-01-29 16:14:41 139996474869504 [Warning] WSREP: Failed to prepare for incremental state transfer: Local state UUID (00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000) does not match group state UUID (18153472-f958-11e8-ba63-fae8ac6c22f8): 1 (Operation not permitted)
at galera/src/replicator_str.cpp:prepare_for_IST():482. IST will be unavailable.
2019-01-29 16:14:41 139996262553344 [Note] WSREP: Member 3.0 (node1) requested state transfer from '*any*'. Selected 0.0 (node3)(SYNCED) as donor.
2019-01-29 16:14:41 139996262553344 [Note] WSREP: Shifting PRIMARY -> JOINER (TO: 4902465)
2019-01-29 16:14:41 139996474869504 [Note] WSREP: Requesting state transfer: success, donor: 0
2019-01-29 16:14:41 139996474869504 [Note] WSREP: GCache history reset: 00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000:0 -> 18153472-f958-11e8-ba63-fae8ac6c22f8:4902465
2019-01-29 16:14:42 139996270946048 [Note] WSREP: (9864c6ca, 'tcp://') connection to peer 9864c6ca with addr tcp:// timed out, no messages seen in PT3S
2019-01-29 16:14:42 139996270946048 [Note] WSREP: (9864c6ca, 'tcp://') turning message relay requesting off
2019-01-29 16:16:08 139996254160640 [ERROR] WSREP: Process was aborted.
2019-01-29 16:16:08 139996254160640 [ERROR] WSREP: Process completed with error: wsrep_sst_xtrabackup-v2 --role 'joiner' --address '' --datadir '/var/lib/mysql/' --parent '8725' --binlog '/var/log/mysql/mariadb-bin' --binlog-index '/var/log/mysql/mariadb-bin.index': 2 (No such file or directory)

In the donor (output has been an obfuscated to avoid sharing private info and the times are not matching deliberately):

Jan 29 18:08:22 node3 -innobackupex-backup: 190129 18:08:22 >> log scanned up to (203524317205)
Jan 29 18:08:23 node3 -innobackupex-backup: 190129 18:08:23 >> log scanned up to (203524318337)
Jan 29 18:08:24 node3 -innobackupex-backup: 190129 18:08:24 >> log scanned up to (203524320436)
Jan 29 18:08:25 node3 -innobackupex-backup: 190129 18:08:25 >> log scanned up to (203524322720)
Jan 29 18:08:25 node3 nrpe[25546]: Error: Request packet type/version was invalid!
Jan 29 18:08:25 node3 nrpe[25546]: Client request was invalid, bailing out...
Jan 29 18:08:26 node3 -innobackupex-backup: 190129 18:08:26 >> log scanned up to (203524322720)
Jan 29 18:08:27 node3 -innobackupex-backup: 190129 18:08:27 >> log scanned up to (203524323538)
Jan 29 18:08:28 node3 -innobackupex-backup: 190129 18:08:28 >> log scanned up to (203524324667)
Jan 29 18:08:29 node3 -innobackupex-backup: 190129 18:08:29 >> log scanned up to (203524325358)
Jan 29 18:08:30 node3 -wsrep-sst-donor: 2019/01/29 18:08:30 socat[22843] E write(6, 0x1579220, 8192): Broken pipe
Jan 29 18:08:30 node3 -innobackupex-backup: innobackupex: Error writing file 'UNOPENED' (Errcode: 32 - Broken pipe)
Jan 29 18:08:30 node3 -innobackupex-backup: xb_stream_write_data() failed.
Jan 29 18:08:30 node3 -innobackupex-backup: innobackupex: Error writing file 'UNOPENED' (Errcode: 32 - Broken pipe)
Jan 29 18:08:30 node3 -innobackupex-backup: [01] xtrabackup: Error: xtrabackup_copy_datafile() failed.
Jan 29 18:08:30 node3 -innobackupex-backup: [01] xtrabackup: Error: failed to copy datafile.
Jan 29 18:08:30 node3 mysqld[27345]: 2019-01-29 18:08:30 140562136139520 [Warning] Aborted connection 422963 to db: 'unconnected' user: 'sstuser' host: 'localhost' (Got an error reading communication packets)
Jan 29 18:08:30 node3 -wsrep-sst-donor: innobackupex finished with error: 1. Check /var/lib/mysql//innobackup.backup.log
Jan 29 18:08:30 node3 -wsrep-sst-donor: Cleanup after exit with status:22

So, SST started correctly and then failed. I tried forcing different donors, checking firewall rules, etc. Nothing.

Additionally, I noticed that the process was starting over and over; while monitoring, the .ssh folder was growing up to a certain size (something around 7GB) and then would start over. The logs kept showing the same messages; the init script failed with an error, but the process kept running either until I executed service MySQL stop or kill -9 to all processes. It was getting stranger every minute.

At this point, I was totally lost, scratching my head looking for solutions. More strange still was that trying a manual SST using netcat worked perfectly! So, it was definitely a problem with the init script. Systemd journal was not providing any insight either.

And then…

MariaDB Cluster Dies in the SST Process After 90 Seconds

Suddenly, I noticed that the failure was happening roughly 90 seconds after the start. A short googling later— doing a more specific search — I found this page:
https://mariadb.com/kb/en/library/systemd/#ssts-and-systemd, which explained precisely my problem.

The MariaDB init script has changed its timeout from 900 seconds to 90, while the MySQL Community and Percona Server has this value set to 15 mins. Also, it seems that this change has caused some major issues with nodes crashing as documented in MDEV-15607 — the bug is reported as fixed, but we still can see timeout problems.

I observed that, in case of failure, systemd was killing the mysqld process but not stopping the service. This results in an infinite SST loop that only stops when the service is killed or stopped via systemd command.

The fix was super easy; I just needed to create a file to be used by systemd that sets the timeout to a more useful value as follows:

sudo tee /etc/systemd/system/mariadb.service.d/timeoutstartsec.conf <<EOF
sudo systemctl daemon-reload

As you may notice, I set the timeout to 15 minutes, but I could set it to any time. That was it; the next SST will have plenty of time to finish. Reference to this change is very well documented here.


One could argue about this change, and I’m still having some internal discussions about it. In my opinion, a 90 seconds timeout is too short for a Galera cluster. It is very likely that almost any cluster will reach that timeout during SST. Even a regular MySQL server that suffers a crash with a high proportion of dirty pages or many operations to rollback, 90 seconds doesn’t seem to be a feasible time for crash recovery. Why the developers changed it to such a short timeout, I have no idea. Luckily, it is very easy to fix now that I know the reason.

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performance ,mariadb ,debug ,debugging ,galera cluster ,mysql

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