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Regular Linux Reboots...?

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Michael Williams_6
Trusted Contributor

Regular Linux Reboots...?

This probably should have gone out the system administration one, but hey, who cares!

We've just successfully ported everything from SCO to Linux, under SCO we needed regular reboots for one lame reason or another.

Who here runs Linux in a Business or Enterprise environment? Do you guys have a policy on sheduled reboots of Linux? What reasons do you have for rebooting, or not rebooting?

Please no responses about home usage, this is a serious question for a medium size enterprise environment, and you'll get zero points cuz I'm mean!! :-p
Vitaly Karasik_1
Honored Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

we use LINUX for develment and production.

Our development servers we reboot weekly - because sometimes we have problem with memory, IPC structures and so on

Our production servers I reboot only after applying [kernel] patches - they run without reboots many months.

Vitaly, RHCE
Michael Williams_6
Trusted Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

Thanks Vitaly (is that really your name?!). I'll assign points when I've got a few responses so people don't think my questions been resolved, I could do with a good mix of opinion!

Jan Sladky
Trusted Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

hi Michael,
we are using 3 Linux servers in product enviroment with critical 24/7 telco support aplications.
On all runs Oracle (9i or 10g), Apache2, NFS and SAMBA servers, on one runs DNS.

We have no serious reason to reboot them, memory or swap usage is ready and almost all of typical problems with Oracle or SAMBA we solve in multiuser mode without rebooting several months.
We reboot almost only in cases of upgrade, patching, hw problems

br Jan
GSM, Intelligent Networks, UNIX
Alexander Chuzhoy
Honored Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

We have several servers in our midsize company.
Among their roles are: Proxy,reverse http/https proxy,ftp,sftp,mail relay,smb server,nfs server,etc.
We do not reboot these servers unless there's a certain problem.
Bottom line-single reboot for at least 2-3 months.
Celso Medina Kern
Trusted Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?


I support customers running linux for enterprise business applications and databases. There is no rule to make reboots periodically. In general terms, if memory fragmentation or any kind of possible memory leak does not affect system performance, you don´t need to reboot. It can be worth recycle your application instead rebooting the whole system, if this makes difference for you.

It is critical to run Linux in a certified hardware, using original manufacturer memories, CPU, IFs and disks. It will make your environment more robust. For home usage we don´t usually see diferences in availability, in the enterprise side, a slight difference can cause your business serious damage.

My customers are used to reboot most for system updates(hw/sw).


God bless pessimists, they did the backup!
Stuart Browne
Honored Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

We use linux on servers for two core reasons. One is our major application running 24/7 (multiple database backended), and the other is for firewall/proxy boxes.

The only time we reboot them is if there's been some catastrophic failure of some kind, physical hardware relocation, or power failure (some people just don't like UPS for some reason!). We've not done either of these recently.

The core application boxes are running SCO binaries using ABI, and none of these have had a failure and been rebooted since we put them in (only one of them was moved).

The oldest of these is about 18 months (which was moved a month ago *pout*), the newest of which is just over a month.
One long-haired git at your service...
Thomas Bianco
Honored Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

a friend of mine who has too much free time recently restarted his home linux server after over 2 years of uptime.

I have a linux firewall runnning my cable modem and, aside from a problem with /var spilling over about 2 weeks into service, I haven't even had to look at it in over a year.

assuming you're using mostly stock modules and well tested software uptimes mesured in years are not uncommon, in fact are trivial to achive.
There have been Innumerable people who have helped me. Of course, I've managed to piss most of them off.
Jerome Henry
Honored Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

We use linux for production. We have several servers running most of classical functions (dhcp, dns, ldap directory, file and printer sharing).
We are of university type with several sites, we reboot only in two cases :
- kernel patches applied
- once a year, during holliday time, cauz we just shut them down in august and turn them back on in september.
We do not see any need to reboot them in between, unless there is a special issue with one machine or another, which seldom happens.


You can lean only on what resists you...
Mark Grant
Honored Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

If you had to do this on SCO, I would assume that you will have to do it on Linux too because it suggests problems with the applications you are running on it. SCO may not be the company it once once but their operating system was still a fairly useful implementation of Unix. Unix boxes don't need re-booting to keep them working.

We are a global company and the vast majority of our Windows servers are, in fact, Linux boxes. We do not re-boot them unless we are patching them or upgrading them.

I think many Linux boxes get re-booted because the admins have come from a windows background and they are used to doing that kind of thing.
Never preceed any demonstration with anything more predictive than "watch this"
Vitaly Karasik_1
Honored Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

Yes, Michael,
Vitaly is my first name [I was born in USSR and since 1995 I live in Israel]


Uwe Zessin
Honored Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

We don't have a reboot policy in our shop, either, for any operating system. However, we do reboot when significant changes or changes affecting the system boot have been made to ensure that the system still comes up properly.
Francisco J. Soler
Honored Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?


We have two linux servers and two windows servers.

Linux servers are for Apache, PHP, MySQL, mail server (postfix), cvs server, samba etc.

No reboot policy in the linux servers, even when we install or upgrade some pieces of no critical sofware only restart such services but no reboot.

We restart the whole system for hardware issues or upgrade all the OS.

Linux?. Yes, of course.
Steven E. Protter
Exalted Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

I do not reboot my Linux Servers on any fixed schedule. At least once a quarter, I do patch or kernel maintenance which has a recommended reboot.

I am running a 4 server Linux Webhosting operation. I have had no problems running those servers 90 days or more without boot.

I was forced to boot more frequently while vanquishing some spammers back in April, but since then I boot during maintenance, or to be extra sure of clean operation right before I left the country a week ago.

On vacation in Jeusalem

Steven E Protter
Owner of ISN Corporation
Chris Saunderson
Frequent Advisor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

Like most others here, our only policy for rebooting any Unix machine is for patching (security or bug), including Linux. Large telco environment, mix of production and dev/test.
Ted Nugent called. He wants his shirt back.
Michael Williams_6
Trusted Contributor

Re: Regular Linux Reboots...?

Thanks for all your help guys - managed to get enough responses to compile into a document to stop our client from pressurising us into reboots - a legacy from our SCO days..!