Want to protect your cyber security and still get fast solutions? Ask a secure question today.Go Premium

  • Status: Solved
  • Priority: Medium
  • Security: Public
  • Views: 315
  • Last Modified:

Netware 5.0 slows down with large file copy

I have an automatic 2gb (3 files) backup process occur on a NT 4 server to the Novell server.  When this process occurs all access to the Novell server slows down to the point where a response can take several minutes or a 'server unavailable' warning is displayed.  Logging either does not work or it takes a very long time.  

Meanwhile, server utilization is averaging at around 42% during this copy process (console response time is fairly slow).  Oddly enough, the NT copy process seems unaffected and continues for about 1/2 hour (~ 70Mb/min - slow for 100mbs but about average for this environment - perhaps a bonus question??).

This slowdown is not limited to this specific example rather it's the most extreme example.  Whenever anyone runs a large copy process to the Novell server, it is experienced by everyone (clients use the Novell client).  Only the Novell server seems to experience this problem....NT server tests do not behave this way.  Can't be a Novell issue, huh?  I'm convinced this is a correctable configuration issue!

My environment:
Novell server: 5.0 SP6a, PII 350, 512MB, 4 x 18gb SCSI RAID 5 DPI RAID IV, Intel server NIC. IPX only
NT 4 SP3 servers: PII300, 256MB, 3x8gb SCSI RAID 5 (COMPAQ) - IP/IPX
Clients: Win 9x, NT, 2000 all with latest clients and SP3 all using IPX only for Novell Client and IP for NT/Internet
HP Procurve 4000M switch 10/100

Help me fix this soon.... and I'll give you bonus points!
Shawn Connelly
Shawn Connelly
1 Solution
  Turn off AntiVirus on the Novell File Server if it is running. This can kill a Novell box alone. I have seen it happen with Inoculan/InoculateIT and Norton AntiVirus for Netware.
   If this does not resolve your issue I will need to see your autoexec.ncf and startup.ncf
Is autonegotiate turned off and the speed set manualy on switch and server NIC:s?
Is spanning tree activated on the switch? If so, turn it off.
By default a NetWare server is "prepared" for a relatively small machine, small in RAM or disk.  To avoid that an automated mechanism eats RAM for cache that will never be used again, and not released until the server is restarted, these limits are set.  However, they can be the ones obstructing you.
Check in Monitor.  Look at the values for "Dirty Cache Buffers" (for writing to the disk) and "Current disk requests" (for reading from the disk).  These numbers should go up (can be pretty high) and down, but return to zere every few seconds.  If they don't, your server cannot read from/write to disk fast enough, and has to dedicate a relatively large portion of CPU to a simple thing like disk access.  Normally its cache (=RAM, not CPU) handles that.
There is a lot of tuning that can be done, and it makes a h*ll of a difference for large copy operations, backups, accessing directories with a large number of files etc.  If the figures indicate a cache-problem, you need to know if your server is meant to read from or write to, large files, small files, large directories etc.
Another simple thing to check is the "waiting room" for your NIC.  In Monitor, LAN/WAN information, check the "no ECB" stat.  Is it higher than 0?  You then might want to increase the max packet receive buffers, or the wait time to create them when needed.  That affects the efficiency of your server's LAN traffic.

Free Tool: Port Scanner

Check which ports are open to the outside world. Helps make sure that your firewall rules are working as intended.

One of a set of tools we are providing to everyone as a way of saying thank you for being a part of the community.

JimBb is right that the NetWare server is setup for small sites (up to 100 users).  To overcome this and to provide better throughput the following setting are used in a company with 50000 user and 1000 file servers.  The setting should give maximum throughput.

Set Maximum Packet Receive Buffers = 500
Set Maximum Record Locks Per Connection = 2000
Set Maximum Outstanding NCP Searches = 150
Set Delay Before First Watchdog Packet = 240
Set Number Of Watchdog Packets = 5
Set Delay Between Watchdog Packets = 10
Set Maximum Directory Cache Buffers = 4000
Set Minimum Directory Cache Buffers = 1000
Set Auto Restart After Abend Delay Time = 10
Set Compression Daily Check Stop Hour = 23
Set Compression Daily Check Starting Hour = 19
Set Maximum Service Processes = 400
Set Minimum Service Processes = 100
Set Maximum Concurrent Disk Cache Writes = 4000

Hope this helps
I've ran into a similar case where I was running Norton Ghost on two machines over the network to one Netware 4.11 server (new installed on IBM Netfinity). There two ghosts managed to fill up the cache on the server (I saw the dirty cache buffers increasing). When all buffers where used the server stops accepting more data while writing to the disk...

I solved the problem bu reconfigure the RAID-controller and the disk parameters. I set the disk read after write no off and changed a RAID-controller that affected controller performance (dont't remember the exact parameter on this serverRAID-controller).

possibly the cach on the DPI card can be set to read only..check that as well and if necessarry set it to 50% read  & 50% write cache
ADMINISTRATION WILL BE CONTACTING YOU SHORTLY.  Moderators Computer101, Netminder or Mindphaser will return to finalize these if they are still open in 7 days.  Experts, please post closing recommendations before that time.

Below are your open questions as of today.  Questions which have been inactive for 21 days or longer are considered to be abandoned and for those, your options are:
1. Accept a Comment As Answer (use the button next to the Expert's name).
2. Close the question if the information was not useful to you, but may help others. You must tell the participants why you wish to do this, and allow for Expert response.  This choice will include a refund to you, and will move this question to our PAQ (Previously Asked Question) database.  If you found information outside this question thread, please add it.
3. Ask Community Support to help split points between participating experts, or just comment here with details and we'll respond with the process.
4. Delete the question (if it has no potential value for others).
   --> Post comments for expert of your intention to delete and why
   --> YOU CANNOT DELETE A QUESTION with comments; special handling by a Moderator is required.

For special handling needs, please post a zero point question in the link below and include the URL (question QID/link) that it regards with details.
Please click this link for Help Desk, Guidelines/Member Agreement and the Question/Answer process.  http://www.experts-exchange.com/jsp/cmtyHelpDesk.jsp

Click you Member Profile to view your question history and please keep them updated. If you are a KnowledgePro user, use the Power Search option to find them.  

Questions which are LOCKED with a Proposed Answer but do not help you, should be rejected with comments added.  When you grade the question less than an A, please comment as to why.  This helps all involved, as well as others who may access this item in the future.  PLEASE DO NOT AWARD POINTS TO ME.

To view your open questions, please click the following link(s) and keep them all current with updates.

*****  E X P E R T S    P L E A S E  ******  Leave your closing recommendations.
If you are interested in the cleanup effort, please click this link
POINTS FOR EXPERTS awaiting comments are listed in the link below
Moderators will finalize this question if in @7 days Asker has not responded.  This will be moved to the PAQ (Previously Asked Questions) at zero points, deleted or awarded.
Thanks everyone.
Moderator @ Experts Exchange
I thought you said you updated all of these?  It is now nearly one month later and I see nothing.

Expert input with closing recommendations requested.

Moondancer - EE Moderator
Shawn ConnellyTechnical WriterAuthor Commented:
This question is redundant, as this one is duplicated in:

I've made note of those who have contributed to this question and will award if warranted.
Per recommendation, force-accepted.

CS Moderator
Shawn ConnellyTechnical WriterAuthor Commented:
I asked for this question to be closed (it was redundant).
sconnell, you never replied a, if there is no activity from the last post from the Question Owner for 21 days or longer, the question will be considered abandoned.

At that time, we post a notice of intent to either close, accept, delete or PAQ said questions.  We are cleaning up the site and are just now up to this point in this TA.  We have cleaned over 180,000 abandoned questions it all Topic Areas here at EE.

Moderator Jgould was kind to have refunded your points as it was you who had abandoned the question.  Should you had asked the last question, then YOU would not be the offender.

All the questions above have been abandoned, and have been posted in each question asking you to finalize those questions, and you did not respond.  btw-You cannot have more that three questions open without approval from Community Support.

Best regards,

Wes Lennon
Director of Community Services
Experts Exchange
Shawn ConnellyTechnical WriterAuthor Commented:
Wes, I beginning to think you are a computer program.  You repeated yourself again.

"Should you had asked the last question, then YOU would not be the offender."

I was the last person to respond.  This question was redundant because EE was acting 'funky' (original question disappeared) at the time and I had to re-ask the question again.

Featured Post

Free Tool: IP Lookup

Get more info about an IP address or domain name, such as organization, abuse contacts and geolocation.

One of a set of tools we are providing to everyone as a way of saying thank you for being a part of the community.

Tackle projects and never again get stuck behind a technical roadblock.
Join Now