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I've installed centos in a vmware vm in attempt to learn more about system administration. Unfortunately, I was unable to ping the host machine (win7) from the vm or vice versa, even though a third computer on the network was able to ping both. After disabling the firewalls and spending the last 5 hours looking on Google, I was still unable to ping between the host and guest.

Per the suggestions from a thread I found about others having a similar problem, I made changes to the ifcfg-eth0 file. Unfortunately, I didn't save a copy of the file before I made the changes and now I have a corrupted network setup and am not seeing the eth0 device.

Though I'd like to solve this problem and the pinging problem, my question here is: How am I supposed to recover from making changes like these? I have no idea how to get myself back to a working configuration from here.

I'm sure an experienced systems administrator wouldn't make mistakes like these, especially without making copies of the files in advance, but assuming a mistake did occur, what's the recourse?

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what type of network do you use Nat/Bridge/Host Only? –  ALex_hha Jul 18 '13 at 7:18
Full details on the issue described: Host machine is win7 with ip Vm is centos with ip (static) installed on vmware with a bridged connection. The ping fails with a destination host unreachable. –  mowwwalker Jul 18 '13 at 7:23
I'm also unable to ping the win7 vm –  mowwwalker Jul 18 '13 at 7:36

4 Answers 4

I think the following settings would be enough

# /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-eth0

After that restart network

# service network restart
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How am I supposed to recover from making changes like these?

The answer to your original question is - use snapshots. VMWare lets you save the state of a Virtual machine and restore it later on, rolling back all the changes. And always do backups of your configuration files before you mess something up

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maybe you want to read the "Unix Haters Handbook" in advance.

if you are lucke you'll have a backup-file flying around, ending in ~ or ##; check with ls -la

Unix (still) has no tools for "incidents" like this. what people do to prevent such hickups:

  • use a scm like git to manage and track changes of config-files
  • use a cronjob that commits any changes on a daily basis
  • have /etc and other config-dirs in a daily backup
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The way to reliably make changes in a system with the ability to restore the system to a known state afterwards is using a configuration management system and a source code repository.

Backups and snapshots are useful for disaster recovery, but overkill to handle a simple change like this one.

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