Network name is no longer available...

Discussion in 'OT Technology' started by deusexaethera, Jul 7, 2009.

  1. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    ...this has been a pain in my ass for a while now. There is absolutely nothing wrong with the network in my office (as far as I can tell, anyway :hs:) but some users consistently have dropouts in connectivity to the file server when transferring files, while others have no issues at all. What could be causing this problem?
     
  2. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    I suppose I should mention that I've already checked the wiring and it's fine.
     
  3. Fase

    Fase Your Face, In A Pickle Jar.

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    dying router/switch/hub ?

    Whatever the file server is running you could be maxing out the connections or licenses.
     
  4. Hate Crime

    Hate Crime Don't Hate OT Supporter

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    Shitty network cards(realtek), drivers, flow control on NIC, power management, failing hub/switch/router


    take your pick
     
  5. retorq

    retorq What up bitch??

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    No network name != absolutely nothing wrong with the network.
     
  6. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    Wiring is Cat6 all the way, router and switch are fine (it's certain machines that choke, regardless of where in the office they're connected), network cards are all Intel or Broadcom, flow control is Tx/Rx PAUSE on both ends, QoS is enabled, NetBIOS over TCP/IP is enabled...yes retorq, something is wrong, but nothing I know how to fix. Got any ideas?
     
  7. Fase

    Fase Your Face, In A Pickle Jar.

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    I'm assuming you've run a ping then for awhile to test connectivity.

    Let me then revisit:
    Check stress on the file server? Is it maxing out its connections? Licenses (if applicable)? It would be an issue if the same people are always the last ones to connect to it.
     
  8. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    They're just connecting through NFS shares, not mapped drive letters. As far as I know, they connect and disconnect automatically as their machines try to access files.

    Some more things I've figured out: the connections only crap out when several hundred megabytes or more are being pushed to the file server, not when being pulled from the server. The connections also don't crap out if I RDP into the file server and pull data onto it from whatever the machine is that's having trouble pushing data. So it seems to have something to do with inbound connections that the file server doesn't have direct control over -- but since I have hardware flow control manually enabled on the server and the clients, I'm still puzzled why this would be happening at all.
     
  9. Hate Crime

    Hate Crime Don't Hate OT Supporter

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    what kind of network equipment do you have
     
  10. TomDlgns

    TomDlgns OT Supporter

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    in for answer.
     
  11. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    Fortigate firewall/router, 2x Netgear Prosafe switches (workstations connect to one, one connects to the second, servers and router also connect to the second). Not a complicated setup. I have determined that it doesn't matter which switch you're connected to, large pushes to the file server will cause it to crap-out, though connectivity is restored the next instant, and other users don't experience any concurrent interruptions.
     
  12. TomDlgns

    TomDlgns OT Supporter

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    well, if it doesn't matter which switch you are connected to, you can cross hardware off of your list.

    and just to verify, it IS always the same PCs that fail right?
     
  13. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    It would probably be more accurate to say it's always the same people who complain about it, and they always using the same set of computers in the office, though not necessarily the exact same machine every single time. Not everyone in my office has to throw multiple GBs around the network on a daily basis, and needless to say, those people who are just opening and saving Word documents have no trouble at all.

    The files on the file server are all NTFS compressed and virus-scanned (the other servers also have antivirus, but no compression), but I've watched the file server's memory usage and it can get slammed full of data waiting to be written to disk without having any problems, or it can abort the transfer with several GBs of RAM left to spare. It's gotta be a network problem, but whether it's a network driver problem or a network adaptor problem or something else, I have no idea.
     
  14. TomDlgns

    TomDlgns OT Supporter

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    what i would do...

    get a laptop and use the cable that is connected to someones computer who is having issues and try to see if the problem keeps occurring.

    or

    get the latest drivers from the manuf. web site and see what happens then.

    i guess if you don't have a laptop, you could always add another nic card to that computer and try that.
     
  15. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    Since I started this thread, I already tried that, and while I didn't test every single port on both switches, it doesn't seem to matter what kind of machine or what kind of network card I use, but rather the size of the individual files being transferred and the size of all the files put together that causes problems. But again, the server can run out of memory without aborting the transfer, or it can abort the transfer long before it runs out of memory -- I can't figure out the pattern.
     
  16. TomDlgns

    TomDlgns OT Supporter

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    how many users?

    what are your server specs?
     
  17. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    How many people are connected to the file server at any given instant? I dunno. There's 10 people in the office, though, but I've tested this at 2am yesterday and it still did it.

    The server is a Dell Poweredge 2900, 2x C2D Xeon 2.0GHz, 7x 750GB SATA PercRAID + 1 hotspare, integrated Broadcom NIC (trying to get my hands on an Intel PRO to test with, but these same Broadcoms give me no trouble on my Dell 2950s), 8GB DDR2 667MHz ECC RAM. RAID array is cut into three pieces: 100GB for OS and 2x 2048GB for data, and the 2x 2048GB drives are spanned in Windows to give a single 4096GB partition.
     
  18. TomDlgns

    TomDlgns OT Supporter

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    shit...i have a server with 4gb of ram and ~20 computers hooked up to it. no problems at all with transferring large file sizes.

    if it is ONLY happening with certain PCs, i would def rule out the server.

    specs look good on the server, not sure why the memory is getting so high.

    so when you go to my computer, you only see 1 hard drive?

    my servers all configured with raid 5, but in my computer, i see the separate drive volumes.

    also, none of my drives are set to compress the data.
     
  19. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    The memory usage climbs really high under sustained file transfers because the data is getting buffered while the CPU takes its time compressing the data before writing it to disk. But again, it can do that until it has 1MB of RAM left and the file transfer will still creep along, or it can shit the bed long before it runs out of RAM. So it's not the file compression that's doing it. The file compression is necessary, though, because without it we would have already filled up the 4TB storage volume.

    I've run some more tests and it's not specific machines, it's large sets of files -- or at least they take long enough to transfer that something else has time to cause the problem. What else could be causing this kind of problem?

    Someone mentioned user licenses, and I have to be honest, I don't know enough about Windows Server licensing to know if that could have anything to do with it. If the file server came with 5 CALs, does that mean only five machines can be transferring a file at any given instant? Could the problem be that a 6th machine is jumping in to transfer a file, interrupting one of the other machines' connections in the middle of a large file transfer?
     
  20. TomDlgns

    TomDlgns OT Supporter

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    nah, the licensing issue wont cause those problems.

    well, i am not certain, but every time i have called in about licensing, i ask them how it is possible for them to monitor my "CAL" licenses, and each time, and i always get connected to a diff. rep, they tell me that they dont have a way to monitor it and that they ask the IT admins to be honest about it.

    not sure what else it could be. we have more users than you, but we are no where near 4TB of storage on the server. my biggest partition is ~265 GB.
     
  21. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

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    I know in the case of a Terminal Server, the licenses are monitored by terminal services itself, which gets information about the number of available licenses from a Terminal Services Licensing server. I don't know about any other kind of concurrent access, assuming there even is another kind.
     

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