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Server 2008 R2 w/ Exchange 2010 rebooting every night....

Posted on 2013-12-02
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Last Modified: 2015-08-06
Here's the server:

Server 2008 R2 Enterprise
Exchange 2010 Standard
Server is domain controller

Every evening at a few minutes after 1am, the server will simply reboot itself. I have searched the logs multiple times and cannot identify any errors that occur just before the reboot. I also do not see any schedule tasks or backup jobs that occur at that time. However, at 1-3 minutes after 1am (the time still remained the same even after the daylight savings change) the server simply reboots. Can anyone offer any insight as to what might be happening?
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Question by:medium_grade
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Expert Comment

by:Peter Hutchison
ID: 39691305
USe Task Manager, Performance Monitor and REsource Manager tools to determine issues. With such big apps on it, I suspect it will be running out of memory every quickly.
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Author Comment

by:medium_grade
ID: 39691308
So, look to see what, if anything, is hogging all of the memory? Do you think it's a memory issue that causes the crash every night at 1am?
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Expert Comment

by:Chris Millard
ID: 39691349
Does your server AV run a scan at this time?
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Author Comment

by:medium_grade
ID: 39691377
Let me check.
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Author Comment

by:medium_grade
ID: 39691383
No. It looks like I have a quick scan schedule Sunday nights at 2am. That appears to be it.
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Expert Comment

by:Steven Harris
ID: 39691417
The first issue I notice is that you are running Exchange on a Domain Controller:

Exchange Server and Active Directory are both resource-intensive applications. There are performance implications to be considered when both are running on the same computer.

If Exchange Server is running on a domain controller, you must also make that domain controller a global catalog server.

This configuration is less secure because Exchange administrators will have local administrative access to Active Directory, enabling them to elevate their own privileges. In addition, any security vulnerability found in either Exchange Server or Active Directory exposes the other to compromise.

Both the Domain Controller and Exchange Server use port 389 for LDAP queries, which creates a conflict.
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Author Comment

by:medium_grade
ID: 39691422
How does it work in a MS Small Business Server environment then?
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Expert Comment

by:Steven Harris
ID: 39691425
There is a large difference between SBS and Server 2008 R2 Enterprise.

With that said, This setup can and does happen, it is just not a best practice and is not recommended.

With all of that aside, have you looked into Task Scheduler?  Is there anything setup around that time or within 1 hour prior to that time?

One other option is to forcibly change the time on the server and watch it shutdown...
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Author Comment

by:medium_grade
ID: 39691509
Under the Task Scheduler library, there does not appear to be any. However, under the Microsoft section, there are a few that run at around 12am. Should I start disabling those?
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Expert Comment

by:Simon Butler (Sembee)
ID: 39692090
The server does a lot of things itself at midnight that are related to system maintenance. I wouldn't disable them.

Is this a graceful reboot or a hard reboot? You can look in the logs for that. If it is graceful it should also tell you why.

Simon.
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Author Comment

by:medium_grade
ID: 39887684
Sorry. Stayed up and watched it. Looks like BSOD. I noticed that it referenced a particular driver file:

HpAHCIsr.sys

It's a file beloinging to the HP Smart Array SATA RAID adapter. I upgraded to the latest version of the driver and no dice. Weird development today: if the Internet is down at 1am when this normally happens, it won't reboot. However, it will crash later on in the day (yikes).

Any ideas?
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Expert Comment

by:Peter Hutchison
ID: 39888158
How is Windows update configured? Does that do a regular check or is it turned off?
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Author Comment

by:medium_grade
ID: 39888301
Off.
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Expert Comment

by:Simon Butler (Sembee)
ID: 39888336
If you have identified it as a HP driver then I would call HP support for assistance.
You will probably have to remove the driver completely, reboot the machine, then install the latest support pack.
You may also have to update the firmware on the RAID card.

Simon.
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Author Comment

by:medium_grade
ID: 40251344
No dice. I tried removing/updating the driver and that does not seem to have fixed it. Perhaps I could create an image of the drive and install those images on new drives with a new controller?
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Expert Comment

by:Simon Butler (Sembee)
ID: 40251976
Old question alert!

Do you have the HP diag tools installed?
I think you are looking at either a complete system rebuild (to rule out OS issues) or calling HP as it is hardware.

Simon.
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Accepted Solution

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medium_grade earned 0 total points
ID: 40274807
It looks as though it might be tied to the MS Exchange nightly defrag. Changing the schedule tonight and going to see if it affects the time of the reboot.

I agree it's probably an HP issue, but I want to have as much info as possible. The fact that it happens faithfully at 1am tells me SOMETHING in the OS is triggering the controller issue.
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Author Closing Comment

by:medium_grade
ID: 40917033
The controller was the issue. Replaced it myself.
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