Small Business Server 2008 Freezing (No Errors in Event Viewer)

Posted on 2010-08-30
Last Modified: 2012-05-10
I have a Small Business 2008 server in a small office (8 people) running Domain Controller, DNS, DHCP, File Server, Exchange Server, Blackberry Enterprise Server Express 5.0, Hamachi (VPN), and LogMeIn (Remote Access). The Hardware is all Intel (Case/Power Supply, Processor, Motherboard.) and is running RAID 1 for OS and another RAID 1 for Data drives off the motherboard.

What happens is that every so often (1-2 times a week) at random times users will be unable to access the server shares, email, dns, etc. When the server is check it will be displaying lock screen (ctrl+alt+del to login) and sound for all the world like it is on. If ctrl+alt+del is pressed there is no response. RDP errors out saying it cant locate the target. Server has to be hard rebooted and will start working again when it comes back up. Looking over the error logs there will be no errors, the only sign of a problem is that event viewer will stop recording events when this happens (i.e. If the server goes down at 10:00AM Sunday and is rebooted at 8:00AM Monday there will be no events in the error log from 10:00AM Sunday - 8:00AM Monday.

This has been going on for a while now and is getting extremely irritating, I have replaced the ram and it is still doing the same thing. HELP!
Question by:Aaron_CD
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LVL 27

Expert Comment

ID: 33558832
not good!

Just to check, from the time it goes wrong, there are no eventlogs at all? is that right?

Anything that stops event logs is usually hardware.

next time it happens, please check the following:
Does the mouse move on the screen?
Does the caps lock light work on the keyboard if the caps key is used?
can you ping the server?

Once it is running again, check the event logs prior to the issue for any warnings/events, particularly disk ones.


Overheating can cause a complete stall of all systems. Are the fans running? is it particularly hot in there?
Disks could have died, Check the RAID BIOS as they often have event logs i them which tell you if the disks are screwed.

get some good backups of this thing asap.

LVL 34

Expert Comment

by:Shreedhar Ette
ID: 33559088

Run SBS 2008 Best Practice Analyzer tool and fix the errors reported.

Also do run Exchange 2007 Best Practice Analyzer tool and fix the errors reported.

After that keep the server under observation.

Hope this helps,

Author Comment

ID: 33559109

Thanks for the quick response!

The mouse does not respond when this happens.
I will check Caps Lock and Ping next time it happens.

The Event log does not contain anything useful. No critical errors and only a few warnings related to network IP issues and print spooler warning from deleting RDP printers.

As far as cooling the server room is Air Conditioned. The fans are all running and are configured to speed up if the server gets too hot. As far as I've seen the fans have not sped up when this happened so I've dismissed overheating up to this point.

I am currently installing the Intel RAID monitor to check for any issues with the RAID.


Thank I will give that a go!
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Author Comment

ID: 33559209
Just finished installing RAID monitor and it looks like one of my data drives failed (see attached) so I am replacing it asap. Is it possible for a failed drive that is still plugged in  to cause this issue?
LVL 27

Expert Comment

ID: 33559252
Thought so!
If this drive is still part of the raid array it will cause all sors of problems, including the system hangs.
You need to remove/replace it asap.

Author Comment

ID: 33568689
Well I went to replace the drive this morning and it looks like the drive simply came unplugged. I replaced it anyway but this puts me back at square one. I assume if the drive was unplugged it couldn't have caused the issue. Any other ideas?

Expert Comment

ID: 33575407

You are kidding right ? an unplugged member of raid can and will cause issues that you are facing .

Its simply that the software cannot see it and when it tries to sync may simply stop to prevent data issues.

post back results if the issue recurs
LVL 27

Expert Comment

ID: 33606738
agreed. If the raid system cannot locate one of its drives it could make the server quite unstable.
Let it run a while now its plugged in and see how it goes. a reboot would be a good idea too as iot will let the server start up from scratch with all of its drives available.

Author Comment

ID: 33607178
Has crashed twice since I installed the new hard drive. Same problem, again no errors in event viewer. Ideas?

Expert Comment

ID: 33607188

what does the raid monitor now say ? and how are the dives configured because they are not all the same size so must me multiple RAID 1 s ?

post back results

Accepted Solution

Aaron_CD earned 0 total points
ID: 34492897
The solution to this problem was to replace the motherboard. We have had no issues since.

Author Comment

ID: 34492915
I have the ultimate solution that resolved this problem.

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