System fails to boot printing "systemd[1]: Freezing execution" after applying security patches on RHEL 8.2 or upgrading to RHEL 8.3

Solution Verified - Updated -

Issue

After applying security updates or upgrading to RHEL 8.3 the system is unable to boot.

  • We see errors similar to the following on the console:

    systemd[1]: Freezing execution
    
  • When the serial console is enabled, message such as the ones below are printed on the serial console:

    [  OK  ] Started Setup Virtual Console.
    [  OK  ] Reached target Switch Root.
             Starting Switch Root...
    [  !!  ] Failed to execute /sbin/init
    [!!!!!!] Failed to execute fallback shell, freezing.
    
  • While the yum command was applying the upgrade or security update patches, the following messages could be seen:

    [...]
    error: failed to exec scriptlet interpreter /sbin/ldconfig: Operation not permitted
    warning: %post(openssl-libs-1:1.1.1g-11.el8.x86_64) scriptlet failed, exit status 127
    [...]
    error: failed to exec scriptlet interpreter /sbin/ldconfig: Operation not permitted
    warning: %post(libdb-5.3.28-39.el8.x86_64) scriptlet failed, exit status 127    
    [...]
    
  • A crash of the system occurred while theyum command was applying the upgrade or security update patches:

      Running scriptlet: systemd-239-41.el8_3.x86_64                        130/499 
      Upgrading        : systemd-239-41.el8_3.x86_64                        130/499 
      Running scriptlet: systemd-239-41.el8_3.x86_64                        130/499 
    
    [  ...] printk: systemd: 48 output lines suppressed due to ratelimiting
    [  ...] Kernel panic - not syncing: Attempted to kill init! exitcode=0x00007f00
    [  ...] 
    [  ...] CPU: 0 PID: 1 Comm: systemd Kdump: loaded Not tainted 4.18.0-193.19.1.el8_2.x86_64 #1
    [  ...] Hardware name: QEMU Standard PC (Q35 + ICH9, 2009), BIOS 1.13.0-2.fc32 04/01/2014
    [  ...] Call Trace:
    [  ...]  dump_stack+0x5c/0x80
    [  ...]  panic+0xe7/0x2a9
    [  ...]  do_exit.cold.22+0x20/0x71
    [  ...]  do_group_exit+0x3a/0xa0
    [  ...]  __x64_sys_exit_group+0x14/0x20
    [  ...]  do_syscall_64+0x5b/0x1a0
    [  ...]  entry_SYSCALL_64_after_hwframe+0x65/0xca
    [  ...] RIP: 0033:0x7f4a5f4164be
    [  ...] Code: 89 fa 41 b8 e7 00 00 00 be 3c 00 00 00 eb 14 0f 1f 44 00 00 89 d7 89 f0 0f 05 48 3d 00 f0 ff ff 77 1a f4 89 d7 44 89 c0 0f 05 <48> 3d 00 f0 ff ff 76 e2 f7 d8 89 05 32 dc 20 00 eb d8 f7 d8 89 05
    [  ...] RSP: 002b:00007ffc0f36b9a8 EFLAGS: 00000202 ORIG_RAX: 00000000000000e7
    [  ...] RAX: ffffffffffffffda RBX: 00007f4a5f41ed38 RCX: 00007f4a5f4164be
    [  ...] RDX: 000000000000007f RSI: 000000000000003c RDI: 000000000000007f
    [  ...] RBP: 00007f4a5f6209e0 R08: 00000000000000e7 R09: 00007ffc0f36b8b8
    [  ...] R10: 0000000000000000 R11: 0000000000000202 R12: 0000000000000001
    [  ...] R13: 0000000000000003 R14: 00007f4a5f624150 R15: 0000000000000000
    

Environment

  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.1 and 8.2
    • fapolicyd
    • yum

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