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XServe Crashes/Process Viewer Gremlins


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We've spent about three weeks trying to figure out why our Xserve would

experience dramatic slowdowns and would drop certain classes of users, and

sometimes crash. For a while only Apple File Server users would get

kicked off while SMB was fine, over the past week it was the opposite.

 

2 weeks ago I rebuilt the server OS from scratch, the problem reappeared

abuot 5 days later.

 

Today Apple replaced all the hardware save the Fiber Card to the Xserve

RAID, and the problem still manifested itself (about 3 hours after reboot

our SMB connections stopped working).

 

We've troubleshooted all the hardware/network/cables, etc.

 

One item that was weird was that we noticed processes in Process Viewer

with weird names that looked like a they were pulled straight from the

Zapf Dingbats library of fonts, most of the time they would have ??? for

the User. For about a week no one at Apple knew what they were because

they didn't appear in Top.

 

Anyhow, tonight I rebuilt the OS from scratch, installed it on a different

drive in the Xserve, rebuilt the users from scratch (last time I imported

them). The only third party software on the Xserve is Retrospect client

5.0.54. The guy at Apple support said after asking around someone thought

the weird "gremlins" in Process Viewer might be do to Retrospect.

 

With all the flakiness I'm afraid to run w/o it; based on the setup there

shouldn't be a problem (i'm running 10.2.6 with all the latest patches).

 

Has anyone seen this? I've searched the list and can't find anything.

I'm just nervous that I'm going to have the problems all over again,

although I ran the server fine for 7 months with Retropsect, TB2 and

10.2x. Right now I'm leaving Tb2 off.

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