RH8 installed on opteron hangs after a few days. You can ping but not telnet, not ssh, not login at console

I have several new dual opteron systems running RH8.  They run fine for an unspecified period of time.  Then usually under some load they hang.  You can not telnet to them, you cannot ssh, you can't even login at the console.  However, they respond to ping.  You have to press reset to get them back.  In going through the messages, security and boot log files there are no messages indicating any trouble.  These systems are running with a kernel 2.4.18-14.bigmem (smp), they have 8G of memory and 8G of swap

Motherboard Tyan-S2882G3NR  AMD opteron 248 (way) cpu

noackpAsked:
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wesly_chenCommented:
Hi,

   It looks like you doesn't use the 64-bit OS, which Redhat 8 doesn't have 64bit version.

   So RH 8 cannot use more than 2GB swap even though you have more than 2GB swap partition (in one partition).

   This will cause some issue. But I would that it is most likely the kernel issue.
1. You can try to upgrade the kernel
rpm -ivh http://download.fedoralegacy.org/redhat/8.0/updates/i386/kernel-bigmem-2.4.20-30.8.legacy.i686.rpm

2. Upgrade the motherboard BIOS.

3. resize the swap partition to 2GB each (you can have multiple 2GB swap partitions).

4. Use Fedora Core 3 with 64-bit support (than you can have more 2GB swap partition).

   RedHat Linux 8 is no longer in support any more. So use Fedora Core 3 or newer version will be better.

Regards,

Wesly
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noackpAuthor Commented:
Wise advice.  I just upgraded everything on that net to RH8...why...only OS that is supported by all the vendors tools we are using.  There are 4 older systems that are now exibiting the same problems as the dual opterons.  The only common thread I can find on the older systems is that in order to get them to boot I had to enable the /noapic switch on the kernel boot line.  Seems as if these are doing the same thing as the opterons.  They are booting with the same kernel.

Is there anyway to resize the swap partition without reformatting?

I can't use the fedora core 3 as some apps won't work on it.
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wesly_chenCommented:
> Is there anyway to resize the swap partition without reformatting?
As root
swapoff -a   # turn off swap
fdisk /dev/hda  # repartition, assume the swap is on /dev/hda
p  # print the menu
Then delete the old swap parttion and recreate the new partition.
do "w" to make change take effect.
For more details about swap, check
http://www.redhat.com/docs/manuals/linux/RHL-8.0-Manual/custom-guide/s1-swap-adding.html

> only OS that is supported by all the vendors tools we are using.
How about RHEL 3.0? It uses 2.4.x kernel as RH8 do. RHEL3.0 has Opteron support, too.
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noackpAuthor Commented:
unfortunately I need to take the swap away not add it.  Can't afford the cost of RHE3v2AS x 20 systems right now.
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wesly_chenCommented:
> unfortunately I need to take the swap away not add it
Resize/reduce the swap partition, right? It is highly not recommended to take away swap partition.
But you can commend out swap partition in  /etc/fstab.
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