I recently had trouble with a MySQL installation in Ubuntu. For some reason or the other, during an upgrade to a newer version of mysql-server, the upgrade script had issues stopping the server and the script failed. This meant that
apt could no longer function as it kept raising a red flag over the broken upgrade with the following instructions:
dpkg was interrupted, you must manually run 'dpkg --configure -a' to correct the problem.
Unfortunately, the above command too failed as the script could not stop MySQL (again) in order to proceed with the upgrade.
Stopping MySQL database server: mysqld failed!
invoke-rc.d: initscript mysql, action "stop" failed.
While I could have investigated why mysql could not be stopped (manually killing the process did not help), I wanted an easier route as I was happy to simply nuke mysql (I had a database backup) and reinstall it. I could of course not use
apt to do so as it was being anally pedantic about the broken package. So, I had to brute force it. This involved:
dpkg --purge --force-all mysql-server
(Actually, I used
dpkg --purge --force-all mysql-common mysql-client mysql-client-5.1 mysql-server mysql-common mysql-server-5.1 mysql-client-5.1 mysql-server-core-5.1 which broke some dependencies, but was necessary. I then also renamed the
Once I had forced the uninstallation, I was able to proceed with the mysql install to reset my system back to pristine goodness.