Isolating a chronic rpmdb corruption problem.

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Hiya, folks.

I'm having a bit of a time in my CentOS 6 environment with what I'm guessing is some kind of knuckleheaded behavior in one or more of my utilities.
We have Spacewalk and Puppet working in general harmony, but I have a chronic issue with a significant percentage (call it... 10%) of my hosts turning up with rpmdb problems on a regular basis.  Not the same hosts every time, either. There's some correlation I'm drawing to relatively idle systems, but it may be BS.

When yum tries to install on a borked systems, I get error 12s; db_verify comes up with 'Cannot allocate memory' for Basenames (or sometimes just Packages).  rpm --rebuilddb almost universally makes them okayish again, but not entirely; I'm enjoying lost dependencies here and there (yum check dependencies crying into its beer a lot, and I've got an xargs nightmare to re-install the missing packages)

Basically, I've got a handle on an ever lengthening list of mitigation methods, but what I can't seem to isolate is whodunit. I have no idea what's reaching into the DB hamfisted and making a mess quite so often.

Does anyone have suggestions as to what in hell I should be doing to narrow down causes?

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