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Starting Rational License Key Server on Linux results in error "Wrong hostid on SERVER line for license file"

Technote (troubleshooting)


Attempts to start IBM Rational License Key Server on Linux results in the error "Wrong hostid on SERVER line for license file".


RHEL 6.1, SLES 11 SP2+ and later versions use a new network device naming scheme by default when the system BIOS is detected to support SMBIOS Version 2.6 type 41 and type 9 tables. So, when the NetworkManager is running by default and it detects the NIC (Network Interface Card) in the system, it gives identifier such as

for Lan-On-Motherboard interfaces
em<port number>_< virtual function instance / NPAR Index>
(ethernet-on-motherboard <1,2 ..>) , e.g. em1, em2, etc

for PCI add-in interfaces
p<slot number>p<port number>_<virtual function instance / NPAR Index>
e.g., p3p1_0, p4p2, etc

This is part of an attempt to make interface naming more predictable and meaningful.

Rational license Key server for Linux is hardcoded to look for ethN (Mac Address) as the identifier for host id. So it validates application license, only if the NIC is identified as "eth0".


RHEL 6.1, SLES 11 SP2 and later

Resolving the problem


Note: Disabling the new naming scheme for the NIC identifier can be done in two ways which is during installation and post installation of the Operating System.

  1. Disable the use of the new naming scheme during installation of Operating System (attended or automated), pass the following kernel command line parameter biosdevname=0 on the boot command line. The parameter should be passed on the boot command line after installation to ensure that a new network adapter plugged in post installation has a traditional 'eth' name.

    Note: On SLES 11 SP2, biosdevname=0 needs to be passed to boot command line only during installation.

  2. Disable the use of the new naming scheme post installation of Operating System:
    1. Make a backup of /etc/grub.conf, retaining SELinux info:

      # cp --preserve=context /etc/grub.conf /etc/grub.bak

    2. Add biosdevname=0 to the kernel boot arguments in /etc/grub.conf.

  3. Reverting to the traditional “ethN” naming scheme if the system is using new naming scheme and you would like to revert to the traditional naming scheme:
    1. Rename all ifcfg-emN and ifcfg-p* configuration files and modify the contents of the files accordingly.

      The content of these files is distribution specific (see /usr/share/doc/initscripts-<version> for details).


      ifcfg-ethN files in RHEL 6.1 contain a 'DEVICE=' field which will be assigned with the emN name. Modify it to suit the new naming scheme such as 'DEVICE=eth0'.

    2. Comment the HWADDR variable in the ifcfg-eth* files if present as it is not possible to predict here which of the network devices will be named eth0, eth1 ....

  4. Reboot the machine

  5. Log in to the machine to see the traditional naming convention for the Network Interface Card.

    Note: The 70-persistent-net.rules file will be created under /etc/udev/rules.d/ to make the names persistent across reboots.

Document information

More support for: Rational License Key Server

Software version: 8.1.1, 8.1.2, 8.1.3

Operating system(s): Linux

Reference #: 1627782

Modified date: 2013-03-11