All pipe instances are busy

Posted on 2004-03-25
Last Modified: 2008-03-04
the exporter - about once every two to three weeks - the exporter just dies and gives us this error message:

      Connecting to XXX*Master
      getConnection failed (\\.\pipe\mssql$gmrprod\sql\query (All pipe instances are busy))
      Connection to XXX*Master Failed

any idea what it's doing when it times out? and is there a way to increase the exporter time out?

Any suggestions to fix the above issue will be greatly appreciated.

Question by:crishna1
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Expert Comment

by:Rich Weissler
ID: 10681529
I'm not certain this is a timout issue, is it?  There is a small chance that this could be a DOS attack, or other malware... which actually could be running on that server.

This looks like MS SQL.  Have you applied all the patches?  You could be getting hit by the Slammer virus every few weeks.
Check here for more information:

At a minimum, make certain you have this patch applied to the server:

All slammer takes to clear out is a reboot... but it will be infected again a few days or weeks later if it isn't patched...

Author Comment

ID: 10681587
You are right , this is MS Sql.

Also,FYI :we are using it for fail over and disaster recovery - Our product normally runs 100% on the same node.

my dumb question , is there anything like increasing the number of pipes?

please advice
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Expert Comment

by:Rich Weissler
ID: 10683422
Ohhh.  I wish elsewhere right now so that I could test this, but it looks like the maximum number of named pipes are automatically determined by the operating system based on the resources available.  When the error occurs, take a look at "Computer Management", and I think it's sessions to see the pipes currently in use.  (I don't think that is IPC$ traffic, but I could be wrong.  I'll have to get back to my system tomorrow to check...)

(Anyone else want to jump on that one before tomorrow for an assist?)

In any event, I suspect if the system is working correctly for weeks at a time, without problems, and they SQL Server isn't patched, that you are getting infected every few weeks by the Slammer virus.  You can look here: at the volume of port 1434 traffic to see that Slammer and it's ilk are still alive and well on the net.  :-(  )
LVL 29

Accepted Solution

Rich Weissler earned 500 total points
ID: 10687331
Ok, two items:
  (1) Don't uses "Computer Management" to check on the number of sessions open.  You CAN use the old standby in SQL Server Enterprise Manager, Management, Current Info, Process Info -- and that will tell you what is currently running on the SQL server.
  (2) I still don't see any way of configuring the maximum number of named pipes.  Your server should continue to allow allow connections until it runs out of other resources.
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Author Comment

ID: 10783986
any further information on this??
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Expert Comment

by:Rich Weissler
ID: 10784042
Have you been able to confirm whether you have the Slammer virus?  Is the SQL Server patched to at least SP3?

The number of pipes is fluid based on available resources.

Author Comment

ID: 10784058

I am currently located in a different location from where the server is, i need to check with the folks there.
let me get back with you on those, is there anyother information  i need to ask for?

Appreciate your help!

LVL 29

Expert Comment

by:Rich Weissler
ID: 10784251
When the problem occurs, does the CPU utilization on the SQL server spike up to around 100%?

They can check the patch level by running Query Analyzer and entering "SELECT @@VERSION"
Which will return a line which starts with: "Microsoft SQL Server  2000 - 8.00.818 (Intel X86)   [...]"

8.00.818 is the current version.  If they are running a version before 8.00.760, you have reason to be concerned.

Author Comment

ID: 10805790
The following is the info i got from my folks, please advice!


Answers :

All SQL Servers have been updated with the SLAMMR virus fix.
SP3 has been installed for sometime now.
The problem has only happened twice this year and we weren't
monitoring the CPU.

We don't run SQL Servers here on port 1433. The SQL Servers are all named
instances clustered via Veritas software. Which is the reason we had to use
the Named Pipe name in the connection string of the exporter. The Net Bios
name or the ip address will not work connecting to this SQL database, at
least we haven't been able to get it to work since moving off MS Cluster to


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