[slurm-users] scontrol reboot does not allow new jobs to be scheduled if nextstate=RESUME is set

Ole Holm Nielsen Ole.H.Nielsen at fysik.dtu.dk
Wed Oct 25 12:59:45 UTC 2023

Hi Tim,

I think the scontrol manual page explains the "scontrol reboot" function 
fairly well:

>        reboot      [ASAP]      [nextstate={RESUME|DOWN}]     [reason=<reason>]
>        {ALL|<NodeList>}
>               Reboot the nodes in the system when they become idle  using  the
>               RebootProgram  as  configured  in Slurm's slurm.conf file.  Each
>               node will have the "REBOOT" flag added to its node state.  After
>               a  node  reboots  and  the  slurmd  daemon  starts up again, the
>               HealthCheckProgram will run once. Then, the slurmd  daemon  will
>               register  itself with the slurmctld daemon and the "REBOOT" flag
>               will be cleared.  The node's "DRAIN" state flag will be  cleared
>               if  the reboot was "ASAP", nextstate=resume or down.  The "ASAP"
>               option adds the "DRAIN" flag to each  node's  state,  preventing
>               additional  jobs  from running on the node so it can be rebooted
>               and returned to service  "As  Soon  As  Possible"  (i.e.  ASAP).

It seems to be implicitly understood that if nextstate is specified, this 
implies setting the "DRAIN" state flag:

> The node's "DRAIN" state flag will be  cleared if the reboot was "ASAP", nextstate=resume or down. 

You can verify the node's DRAIN flag with "scontrol show node <nodename>".

IMHO, if you want nodes to continue accepting new jobs, then nextstate is 

We always use "reboot ASAP" because our cluster is usually so busy that 
nodes never become idle if left to themselves :-)

FYI: We regularly make package updates and firmware updates using the 
"scontrol reboot asap" method which is explained in this script:

Best regards,

On 10/25/23 13:39, Tim Schneider wrote:
> Hi Chris,
> thanks a lot for your response.
> I just realized that I made a mistake in my post. In the section you cite, 
> the command is supposed to be "scontrol reboot nextstate=RESUME" (without 
> ASAP).
> So to clarify: my problem is that if I type "scontrol reboot 
> nextstate=RESUME" no new jobs get scheduled anymore until the reboot. On 
> the other hand, if I type "scontrol reboot", jobs continue to get 
> scheduled, which is what I want. I just don't understand, why setting 
> nextstate results in the nodes not accepting jobs anymore.
> My usecase is similar to the one you describe. We use the ASAP option when 
> we install a new image to ensure that from the point of the reinstallation 
> onwards, all jobs end up on nodes with the new configuration only. 
> However, in some cases when we do only minor changes to the image 
> configuration, we prefer to cause as little disruption as possible and 
> just reinstall the nodes whenever they are idle. Here, being able to set 
> nextstate=RESUME is useful, since we usually want the nodes to resume 
> after reinstallation, no matter what their previous state was.
> Hope that clears it up and sorry for the confusion!
> Best,
> tim
> On 25.10.23 02:10, Christopher Samuel wrote:
>> On 10/24/23 12:39, Tim Schneider wrote:
>>> Now my issue is that when I run "scontrol reboot ASAP nextstate=RESUME
>>> <node>", the node goes in "mix@" state (not drain), but no new jobs get
>>> scheduled until the node reboots. Essentially I get draining behavior,
>>> even though the node's state is not "drain". Note that this behavior is
>>> caused by "nextstate=RESUME"; if I leave that away, jobs get scheduled
>>> as expected. Does anyone have an idea why that could be?
>> The intent of the "ASAP` flag for "scontrol reboot" is to not let any
>> more jobs onto a node until it has rebooted.
>> IIRC that was from work we sponsored, the idea being that (for how our
>> nodes are managed) we would build new images with the latest software
>> stack, test them on a separate test system and then once happy bring
>> them over to the production system and do an "scontrol reboot ASAP
>> nextstate=resume reason=... $NODES" to ensure that from that point
>> onwards no new jobs would start in the old software configuration, only
>> the new one.
>> Also slurmctld would know that these nodes are due to come back in
>> "ResumeTimeout" seconds after the reboot is issued and so could plan for
>> them as part of scheduling large jobs, rather than thinking there was no
>> way it could do so and letting lots of smaller jobs get in the way.

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