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IPv6 static config in /etc/network/interfaces ignored




Hi,

I'm wondering if anyone came across this recently, because I can't find any bug reports or posts referring to it online (so I'm wondering if I messed something up inadvertently).

I have a root server running Stretch 9.7 (fully upgraded) and up until last night when I rebooted it (previous uptime 66 days and change) everything was working fine; now, the inet6 interface is not coming up at boot.

Here's my (redacted) /etc/network/interfaces:
auto lo
iface lo inet loopback
iface lo inet6 loopback

auto eth0
iface eth0 inet static
  address a.b.c.d
  netmask 255.255.255.224
  gateway c.d.e.f
  up route add -net a.b.c.x netmask 255.255.255.224 gw c.d.e.x dev eth0
  up ip addr add f.g.h.i/32 dev eth0
  down ip addr del  f.g.h.i /32 dev eth0
  post-up /etc/network/iptables.sh

iface eth0 inet6 static
  address 2a01:xxxx:xxxx:xxxx::2
  netmask 64
  gateway fe80::1

The server boots fine (with the exception of a plethora of error messages and stuff that doesn't start because configured to use inet6, like apache2), and my IPv4 comes up normally, but only the link-local IPv6 address is there, not the one in interfaces
If I use "ip -6 a a <ipv6 addr> dev eth0" and "ip -6 ro a default via fe80::1" then it works fine.

Checking /var/log/{messages,dmesg,kern.log,daemon.log} for ipv6 only tells me (repeatedly, at every boot):
Jan 27 15:25:11 my-server kernel: [    0.725253] mip6: Mobile IPv6
Jan 27 15:25:11 my-server kernel: [    9.689430] IPv6: ADDRCONF(NETDEV_UP): eth0: link is not ready
Jan 27 15:25:12 my-server kernel: [   12.739782] IPv6: ADDRCONF(NETDEV_CHANGE): eth0: link becomes ready
Jan 27 15:30:20 my-server kernel: [  320.989615] IPv6: ADDRCONF(NETDEV_UP): docker0: link is not ready

After boot, systemctl restart networking doesn't do anything.
Someone somewhere said "try adding a pre-up sleep 10" directive for a similar problem: it seemed to work with systemctl restart networking but didn't do anything at boot time.

The card is
04:00.0 Ethernet controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL8111/8168/8411 PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet Controller (rev 06)

and up until today was using the r8169 driver; I switched to r8168-dkms but nothing changed.

The system does not have Network Manager.

Does anyone have any suggestions?

Thanks!

Claudio