Cannot bind any address

mouring at mouring at
Sat Oct 6 00:17:24 EST 2001

Then you have people that could not understand how to do a simple thing
without it being explained 20 times. If your luckly they will finally get

Every program returns that message.  It is constant.  No amount of
whining will change it.

But I will make a deal with you a life time (since it will take you a
life time to do it). =)

E-mail OpenBSD, NetBSD, FreeBSD, and every Linux distro and get them to
change every instance of that error message to something that "even a
idiot would understanding."  Then I'll back you in this change.

Until then... We shall go on with life.

- Ben

On Fri, 5 Oct 2001, Markus Werle wrote:

> Markus Friedl wrote:
> > i think the message is already very appropriate.
> Yes, I agree, for someone who knows what it is all about
> the message is _very_ appropriate.
> So do not hesitate to change it ;-)
> I just remember a lecture about computer interface
> ergonomy, where we found out that most error messages are
> perfect, but sometimes do not help the user to fix the problem
> anyway.
> We learned about several accidents in nuclear power stations
> where correct error messages were misinterpreted by
> humans in situations where one does not think clearly anymore.
> Several airplane crashs led to the conclusion that
> in case of an engine failure the pilot is _not_
> interested in a message about pressure loss in tube 233-56,
> but rather in a red highlighted engine on his display with
> a single "engine failure" message.
> We do not have to get paranoid about it, but
> I see some analogy for open-ssh:
> The bind problem has a reason, but the error message
> does not tell me this reason. I have to think about it.
> So something is - well - not wrong, but improvable.
> I have to know that child processes do not have a bind problem
> when the father process is killed. I have to know they
> can live even when another sshd comes up. I have to
> know that only the first sshds conflict with each other,
> not the forked ones.
> Since I am not very interested in implementation details
> of ssh I just overlooked this and got it plain wrong for
> 15 minutes.
> Conclusion:
> Although the message is correct and already very appropriate
> it lacks some ergonomy from the viewpoint of people who
> investigate human-machine-interaction .
> Markus
> P.S.:
> In the actual discussion about airplane security some people
> would like to see airplanes under tele-control in
> critical situation. I hope they use open-ssh for that purpose,
> just to achieve maximum security.
> Since airplane developers take a deep look at software
> ergonomy, it still may be a good idea to assume
> maximum stupidity on user's side (that's me :-))..
> I can imagine critical situations where an ergonomic
> error message may save hundreds of lives.
> > > feature request:
> > > sshd detects a concurring sshd is running and gives an
> > > appropriate error message.
> Like this (takes 5 minutes to change the source code):
> Cannot bind any address. Maybe another sshd is up and running.

More information about the openssh-unix-dev mailing list