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source (bleepingcomputer.com): Botched npm Update Crashes Linux Systems, Forces Users to Reinstall



A bug in npm (Node Package Manager), the most widely used JavaScript package manager, will change ownership of crucial Linux system folders, such as /etc, /usr, /boot.

Changing ownership of these files either crashes the system, various local apps, or prevents the system from booting, according to reports from users who installed npm v5.7.0. —the buggy npm update.
Most users will have to reinstall systems
Users who installed this update —mostly developers and software engineers— will likely have to reinstall their system from scratch or restore from a previous system image.

"This destroyed 3 production server after a single deploy!,"
one affected user said in a GitHub bug report today. Many others users have taken to Twitter to describe similar issues with dev and production servers, and warn other users not to update.
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Bug first reported a week ago
The bug was first reported a week ago but was left without an answer from npm developers. Users filed a new bug report after last night's release, and the npm team has released npm v5.7.1, a version that removes the buggy code.

FreeBSD users have also reported being impacted by the bug. Mac and Windows users didn't experience any issues. The problem did not affect every Linux user.
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