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testing dual power supply on HP ML350 G6

Posted on 2014-02-21
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Hello, I have a HP ML350 G6 that is randomly rebooting.  I want to rule out if it is one of the power supplies on the system.  HP tells me there is no hardware problem because their hardware testing show no issues.  

I want to verify the power supplies are working correctly.   What can I do to test the power supplies are not bad and working intermittently?
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Question by:tucktech
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by:R. Andrew Koffron
R. Andrew Koffron earned 2000 total points
ID: 39877415
make sure you have a good back and are not in production, or people are prepared for a disconnect. and unplug and replug them one at a time, and test both for fall-over.
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by:tucktech
ID: 39877469
Thanks R!  good recommendation...  

I will do this during "off hours".  I am sure that will help determine if one is bad but I get the feeling the power supply may still be bad if it works for this test.?  Can you suggest any other tests?
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by:Kimputer
ID: 39877480
Those reboots are bsod's? If so, make sure minidump files are made and analyse those. In that case it could be faulty software instead of a hardware problem.
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by:R. Andrew Koffron
R. Andrew Koffron earned 2000 total points
ID: 39877495
I'm not doubting your feeling, however, if both Power supplies correctly handle the fail over and it works both ways, one of them failing intermittently is unlikely to crash the server. Much more likely to be environmental issue,  2 redundant Power supplies failing simultaneously, randomly, and intermittently is pretty damn unlikely.(not impossible).
I'd try running a diskmon/filemon type logging tool to a network resource. with time stamping, so it make a single line entry every minute or so. than you'd get exact time it's failing and figure out what's happening.

You can also try putting a small UPS on one of them instead of plugging both into the same UPS.

I'd tend to think Kimputer is on track, look for software issues much more likely than redundant power supply issues.
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Author Comment

by:tucktech
ID: 39877579
I appreciate all the recommendations for the random reboots.  

I have reinstalled the OS and reviewed all the event logs.  The OS appears to be running correctly and I do not get any dump or BSOD.  In the event logs I do NOT get any errors except that the system rebooted unexpectedly.

In talking with the UPS company and with HP they are suggesting I eliminate the UPS because HP's power supplies are "very sensative" and it has been known to cause rebooting and other unexpected results.  

I want to rule out the Power Supply is the issue.  Please any recommendations for ruling out the power supply.
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R. Andrew Koffron earned 2000 total points
ID: 39877609
grab a cheapy UPS and put one of the cords to it. for testing only.  Not a configuration I'd keep in place.

Personally I'd daisy chain the small UPS (but this not recommended by APC) so do it at your own risk. I've clearly said it's not recommended.
http://www.apc.com/solutions/display.cfm?id=59BFAC22-5056-AE36-FE722E8CC1311295&ISOCountryCode=gr

In reading the reasons not to daisy chan nothing says it's dangerous or will ruin either UPS. just a risk of overloading(that will, probably not happen, just beep and so on).

My logic being that if it's an intermittent failure, again the likely hood of two PS failing at one is incredibly small, but if the UPS is failing, it could definitely stop both at one. a cheap UPS would keep one alive if the UPS is failing.  I would think even a few seconds of delay on one of the cords would show you what happened.

PS I always configure servers on separate circuits (whenever possible), and prefer 2 small UPS to one Large.
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Author Closing Comment

by:tucktech
ID: 39886119
Thanks for the comments.  When going through everything it ends up the server we have can be very sensitive to the UPS output.  It actually cause problems with two of my servers.  I put the old UPS back in place and I have no problems.
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