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AS/400 disabling Client Access sessions automatically

Posted on 2012-09-18
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Last Modified: 2012-09-28
We are having an issue where when users run  "batch" sessions using "multiable sessions" in Client access at about 1:30 every day depending on how many sessions are up all sessions go down.  This happens for all 10 users connected to our IBM 520 running V5R4.  The clients are XP SP3 and Client Access running V5R4M0, Service Pack SI17742.

Thanks,
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Question by:mihouser
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by:tliotta
ID: 38412920
The oldest service pack for V5R4 iSeries Access listed by IBM is SI22257 from February 2006. Can you do some extra verification?

And can you describe what "batch" sessions are? I'd normally assume that you mean that users are running programs interactively that are designed to run in batch. If so, is there a reason for using interactive cycles (that might be limited) when batch should be used?

Tom
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by:mihouser
ID: 38414093
I did some further investigation and the version is 5.9 V6R1M0 for windows and the service pack is SI42423_Update.  I have included a screen shot of what the "batch file" looks like.

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by:ThomasMcA2
ID: 38414444
I do not see your screenshot.
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Author Comment

by:mihouser
ID: 38414471
Sorry here it is
ASbatchfile.doc
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by:ThomasMcA2
ID: 38414537
That is the definition that points to the batch file - that's not the batch file itself. We need to see the file in the "C:\Users..." path that your screen shot points to.
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Author Comment

by:mihouser
ID: 38414584
Does this help?
as4002.doc
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by:Gary Patterson
ID: 38414708
A few thoughts come to mind:

1) When you create a workstation session (.WS file), that session as an associated "device name" on the AS/400.  Each session needs to have a unique device name.  Is it possible that some of the workstations have duplicate device names?  The device name is in the top right

2) If this happens at exactly the same time each day, is it possible that there is some sort of scheduled process running on the system that temporarily shuts down workstation access - either by ending the workstation jobs directly, temporarily shutting down the network interface, shutting down Telnet, or the subsystem where the jobs run?  Take a look at the job log for one of the terminated jobs to see if there is a useful message, and check the system history log (DSPLOG command) and Qsysopr message queue (DSPMSG QSYSOPR) for messages generated around the time of the problem.

- Gary Patterson
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by:tliotta
ID: 38416683
If multiple users are affected, it shouldn't be due to duplicate device names. If one user is using a device object, another user will simply be rejected.

The two documents do show two actual "batch" files. I misunderstood originally and didn't realize it was referring to .BAT files for starting workstation sessions on the PC.

But I agree that a review of the system history log (DSPLOG) is called for. Symptoms so far point to something that starts at 1:30 that is closing down workstation access. I'd wonder if a job is scheduled at 1:30 PM that ought to run at 1:30 AM for example. Or a user is initiating such a job.

Running this type of "batch" file shouldn't be a problem if the files only start workstation sessions.

Tom
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by:Gary Patterson
ID: 38417485
Tom's right, workstation name duplication isn't going to cause this problem.

Can you provide some additional information?  

For example, when you say "all sessions go down", can you explain exactly what happens?  Are there any error messages or status messages shown on the user's screen?  Does the screen go blank?  Does the Windows program actually terminate?

How long are the users down?  Do the sessions back up automatically, or is there something that has to be done before they can connect again?

This is an odd problem - I don't recall ever hearing a similar issue - and the more information you can provide, the better.

- Gary Patterson
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Author Comment

by:mihouser
ID: 38430232
It seemed to be a rouge computer on the network bringing down computers on the network. Took it off and now is all ok. But still can't figure out why. I think it might have been a DNS look up error on the PC. Does that make sense?
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by:Gary Patterson
ID: 38430294
Rogue computer may have had a duplicate MAC address or duplicate IP address of one of the following:

Your DNS server
The AS/400

this could definitely cause the problem you described.

- Gary
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by:tliotta
ID: 38431025
If, for example, a rogue system duplicated the IP address of the AS/400, it could be responding to packets to that address on its LAN segment. Depending on how switches/routers are in your network, it could disrupt all related packet streams on that LAN segment.

Network details and configuration of the rogue and the AS/400 would be needed to say how/why the trouble existed. There are many possibilities.

Tom
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Gary Patterson earned 1500 total points
ID: 38433545
One thing I'll mention:  

If your network assigns IP addresses to PCs using DHCP, this problem can recur if your network folks don't have the AS/400 (and any other statically addressed devices) addressed in a range that is excluded from DHCP.

I've seen this happen more than once - a server is statically addressed at a relatively high address number, but no exclusion was ever set up in DHCP, and as the network grows, the address eventually gets handed out, resulting in a conflict like this - especially if the DHCP server isn't set up to test for IP conflicts before handing out addresses.

Of course, improper setup of a statically addressed device can also result in this conflict.

We've seen a lot of this in recent years in our network support practice, as more and more mobile (tablets and smartphones in particular) devices are added to customer networks, sometimes nearly doubling the number of devices getting IP addresses from DHCP.

So you might want to have your network team check out your DHCP setup and verify that your static hosts (especially the AS/400) are in an excluded range.

- Gary Patterson
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Expert Comment

by:CadenChow
ID: 38441470
Did you check workstation job name on iSeries side to see any error message?
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Author Closing Comment

by:mihouser
ID: 38444469
That helped thanks
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