It seems that every time I setup a diskless Linux machine I run into the same problem — nfs mounts hang. I’m not talking about the root filesystem. That mounts fine but other mount points result in mount hanging. Then I track the problem down to rpc.statd and portmap hanging. I also end up coming back to my blog to search for the answer to this problem and get frustrated when I can’t find the answer that to a problem that I’ve solved over and over. So, once and for all, I present the solution to the problem that I know I’ll encounter again.
The problem is that the localhost interface is not defined in /etc/network/interfaces and this causes problems (I do not know why) with the nfs/rpc tools. When I setup diskless machines I use debootstrap to create a root file system. Debootstrap correctly leaves a few things unconfigured. The localhost interface is one of them. And so I say to my future self, “self, just add this to /etc/network/interfaces and all will be well. And calm down this isn’t a big deal!” :
iface lo inet loopback