Novell has started to randomly crash/freeze

We have an old Novell 4.11 Server that runs our accounting package.  It has been randomly crashing / freezing recently and we had someone come and look who discovered that the 2nd hard drive was failing. So we disabled that to see how it went but it still seems to be freezing :(

I have looked at the volume error log and every time it freezes and we turn it back on we have the following added to the error log:

Volume SYS mounted on Tuesday, October 2, 2007   8:50:29 am.
Volume mount had the following errors that were fixed:
Problem with file Q_0114.SRV, (TTS file...was not changed)
  length kept = 0, had allocated = 65536
Problem with file 48V8FJ38, (TTS file...was not changed)
  length kept = 0, had allocated = 65536
Problem with file Q_0138.SRV, (TTS file...was not changed)
  length kept = 0, had allocated = 65536
Problem with file CONSOLE.LOG, length extended.
Problem with file CONSOLE.LOG,  old length = 0, new length = 65536

any thoughts or advice would be appreciated. My knowledge of Novell is VERY limited!

Many Thanks,

Graham

grae-ukAsked:
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PsiCopCommented:
NetWare v4.11 is, simply put, an ancient version. It was originally released nearly 10 YEARS ago. That's an eternity in the computing world. You still running any NT v3.01? Yet here NetWare v4.11 is, still delivering value. Hope the PHBs think about that when it comes time to invest  in some newer infrastructure.

At the NetWare console, enter the following command: VERSION

I think NetWare v4.11 had Support Packs. Been awhile since I played with it.

If your hardware is unreliable, it is little wonder the NOS is having problems. The failing hard drive may just be what's apparent. You could have a failing motherboard, RAM or other components (e.g. drive controller). You can futz with the NOS all you want, you won't fix the cause of the problem if that's the case.
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ShineOnCommented:
NetWare (Novell is the company, they make more than one OS, including NetWare, and a number of other products) 4.11, if you had someone come in and pull a hard drive, probably would have been mirroring the volume through NetWare's own mirroring feature, unless the server hardware has a RAID controller and it's a hardware-based mirrored RAID set.  I doubt anyone would've pulled the 2nd drive if it wasn't part of a mirrored pair.

Assuming the 2nd drive was part of a mirror set, I'd recommend finding two repacement drives that match - eBay's a good source for out-of-production hardware - and re-establishing the mirrored pair.  Make sure to manually mirror the DOS partition, so it can be used to boot from.  Mirror the one that kinda works first, then break the pair leaving the new one in place, then put the 2nd new on in and re-establish the mirrored pair again - making sure to manually mirror the DOS partition.

I hope you have a backup, besides.  If you don't, you could end up losing your accounting data.  

That said, since your knowledge is very limited, you should find a trained NetWare professional to do the work for you.  Perhaps alextoft can point you toward someone local to your area that can help...
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grae-ukAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the reply.  We are going to leave it with one drive for the time being as we have our spare server in for repair at the moment.  This is just tiding us over until we have it sorted.  But the repair is taking longer than expected.

I was just wondering if there is a way to stop this crashing in the mean time!

Something odd that has started hapening is every minute we get a message:

An NLM has been loaded that does not allow low priority threads to be run. Low priority threads are used for file comression, etc. Set Upgrade Low Priority threads to ON or unload the NLM

Cheers,

Graham.
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ShineOnCommented:
Sounds like you may be running out of disk space, which, if this drive has only a SYS: volume, could be the source of your lockups.

Check this TID: http://support.novell.com/docs/Tids/Solutions/10012844.html

Post back if you run into problems running SERVMAN to see what's what.   If you've got purgeable space, you should probably do a purge /all to a DOS prompt, on a drive mapped to the root of the volume, from an administrative client PC.
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grae-ukAuthor Commented:
Thanks ShineOn. There were 15k files in limbo...we purged that and they went. the server is still beeping at us tho :(  Stability is yet to be assessed :)

thanks for the suggestion, if there are any others please let me know.

thanks,

Graham
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ShineOnCommented:
Check to see if you have a process "running away" eating up all the processor time.

You may want to do an orderly shutdown and restart it to see if the purge takes care of the issue.  The condition may have been triggered by low disk space but not resolved when you freed up disk space.
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alextoftCommented:
Beeping? When a Netware server beeps it usually spits a message out to the server console. If so, could you post it? The beeps usually translate as "Oi! I've got a problem!".

Where abouts in the UK are you based?

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grae-ukAuthor Commented:
@ ShineOn - How would i check to see if there is a process running away?

@alextoft - Yes, it is spitting out a message: "An NLM has been loaded that does not allow low priority threads to be run. Low priority threads are used for file comression, etc. Set Upgrade Low Priority threads to ON or unload the NLM"

Based in West Sussex.
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PsiCopCommented:
No, DO NOT set "UPGRADE LOW PRIORITY THREADS" to ON!

If a thread has run away, then your server will thrash and likely grind to a halt.
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ShineOnCommented:
Welcome home...
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alextoftCommented:
Ah yes, missed that.

What support pack revision are you on? Also, do you have any third party software (backup etc..) software installed? If so have you applied any available updates? Low thread priorities if I recall correctly were something introduced in NW4, but at the time there were plenty of people knocking out NLM's for Netware which didn't play nicely.
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grae-ukAuthor Commented:
@PSiCop - I ave no intention of doing it!! hehe!! But thanks for the warning!

@ Alextoft - How can i tell what support pack revision i am on?? Sorry if that is a stupid question :S  We haven't made any changes to the system prior to recent irritations.
3rd party - all is disabled apart from our accounts package EXACT.  ArcServe is turned off as is PowerChute software - to try and identify this.

does that help?
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