completely stumped by problem encountered replacing running unicorn

Justin Giancola justin.giancola at
Thu Oct 14 19:01:03 EDT 2010

Thanks, Lawrence.

ENV pollution was indeed the problem. The aforementioned exception was
being caused by by Bundler 0.7 having set ENV['RUBYOPT'] to
"-r<application root>/gems/environment.rb". After clearing that and
setting my paths properly it worked.

Thank you very much for pointing me in the right direction.


On Thu, Oct 14, 2010 at 1:50 AM, Lawrence Pit <lawrence.pit at> wrote:
>  Hi Justin,
> See the paragraph "Other ENV pollution issues" at
> Cheers,
> Lawrence
>> Hello,
>> First off, many thanks to all those who have contributed to this great
>> project. I have been running Unicorn in production for quite some time
>> now. It hass been very reliable and I have really enjoyed being able
>> to deploy frequently without downtime or even dropped connections.
>> I have used the USR2+QUIT upgrade procedure as described in SIGNALS
>> since I started using Unicorn and it works great. However, while
>> upgrading Bundler on my server the other day, an upgrade failed for
>> the first time. The upgrade failed due to a LoadError --<application
>> root>/gems/environment.rb is no longer used in Bundler 1.0 so it was
>> missing from the new application tree.
>> I am using a Capistrano setup so my app is located at
>> /path/to/app/current where current is a symlink to a timestamped
>> release directory. I am calling #working_directory in my unicorn
>> config to set it to the symlinked current path. I am also calling
>> unicorn via a binstub generated by Bundler located at
>> /path/to/app/current/bin/unicorn.
>> I had expected that reexec would pick up the new unicorn and app code
>> because the path to the unicorn executable script, the path to my app,
>> and config files were all identical to those used in the previous
>> deploy. However, this is not what is happening. Rather, it looks like
>> the previous version of the code is trying to reload iteself in the
>> new app tree where files are missing.
>> I am having a very difficult time understanding exactly what files are
>> being reloaded during the reexec. Even my attempts at troubleshooting
>> where the load error is originating have left me completely baffled.
>> In the old app gems/environment.rb is required in a few places but
>> none of those files seem to be reloaded during the reexec. Further, I
>> cannot get this executable swap to work no matter what I try. I have
>> even tried getting rid of the symlinks entirely and changing the
>> contents of the /path/to/app/current in place during the upgrade.
>> I feel like I may be missing something obvious or else I have
>> completely misunderstood how the reload process works. Any insight as
>> to what I should be doing differently would be greatly appreciated.
>> Justin
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