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Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

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Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

I had a Decserver 700 fail and susequently, all VMS nodes connected to the server crashed. Maybe it broadcasted a break command from the terminal server to each system or overloaded the systems somehow, like a virus. The terminal server displayed an "8" and I had to swap it out. Is there anyway to ensure a bad terminal server does not broadcast garbage back to my systems in such an event? Below is the configuration of the replacement server and one of the ports. I use it for the CA (fomerly polycenter) Console Manager connections to my systems for remote management.

Thanks,

Susan

DECserver 700-16 V1.1A BL45-12 LAT V5.1 ROM V4.0-0 Uptime: 3 02:29:52

Address: 08-00-2B-3C-9E-08 Name: COM1_SERVER Number: 0

Identification:

Circuit Timer: 80 Password Limit: 3
Console Port: 1 Prompt: COM1_SERVER>
Inactivity Timer: 30 Queue Limit: 100
Keepalive Timer: 20 Retransmit Limit: 8
Multicast Timer: 30 Session Limit: 64
Node Limit: 200 Software: PHX700V11

Service Groups: 0

Enabled Characteristics:
Announcements, Broadcast, Dump, Lock

TSM_SVR_COM1_SERVER> sho port 2


Port 2: (Remote) Server: COM1_SERVER

Character Size: 8 Input Speed: 9600
Flow Control: XON Output Speed: 9600
Parity: None Signal Control: Disabled
Stop Bits: Dynamic Signal Select: CTS-DSR-RTS-DTR

Access: Remote Local Switch: None
Backwards Switch: None Name: PAPAGO_P2
Break: Remote Session Limit: 1
Forwards Switch: None Type: Ansi
Default Protocol: LAT

Preferred Service: None

Authorized Groups: 0
(Current) Groups: 0

Enabled Characteristics:
Failover, Input Flow Control, Lock, Loss Notification, Message Codes,
Output Flow Control, Verification
15 REPLIES
Vladimir Fabecic
Honored Contributor

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Hello
It is very interesting that terminal server crashes VMS host. I would like to see ANALYZE/CRASH_DUMP to see what really crashed systems. How to check that bad terminal server does not broadcast garbage back to your systems? You can use TCPTRACE utility. But I would do the following: I would use a hub (repeater, not switch)) and connect terminal server and Linux host (laptop) to it. Hub should be connected to existing network switch. Then you watch the traffic using tcpdump from Linux. This is the wayhow I fixed problem with printer server.
In vino veritas, in VMS cluster
Volker Halle
Honored Contributor

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Susan,

let me try to first clarify the VMS crash aspect of your question: did the VMS nodes really crash (and write a crash dump) or did they just stop responding and were left at the console prompt (>>>).

If crashdumps have been written, you should find crash errlog entries and - even better - also CLUE files with the crash footprint (on Alpha: CLUE$COLLECT:CLUE$node_ddmmyy_hhmm.LIS, on VAX: CLUE$OUTPUT:CLUE$LAST_node.LIS). We could then try to work out from the crash information, what has happenend.

If the VMS nodes were forced to the console prompt (>>>), most probably by receiving a signal, there may be ways to disable BREAK processing on the console depending on your type of system. See the VMS FAQ chapter 14.17

http://h71000.www7.hp.com/faq/vmsfaq.txt

Volker.

PS: I'm trying to post this reply since about 6 hours, but ITRC kept failing with 'Error while posting the reply'

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Volker and Vladamir are right. The systems were all halted like they received a BREAK. They did not crash. All sysems were sitting at >>>.

The 14.17 FAQ matches my situation. If I do disable the BREAK, how can I remotely halt my systems if need be? Would the only way be to press a button?

Of course, choosing a "surprise" halt over the times when I need to "force" a halt, I would rather disable the surprise halt and worry about how to get to the systems physically if there is a need to halt them.

Thanks for your help!!

Susan
Volker Halle
Honored Contributor

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Susan,

with Console Manager, I usually halt the systems by pressing

To allow a to get through to the console port of your system, you might have to change the default BREAK character in the Console Manager, otherwise, you'll get the following prompt, if you type after $ CONSOLE CONNECT node :

Do you want to transmit a break? [Y/N]

If you answer yes, your will be converted to a and if you had disabled on the console, it won't work to halt the system.

To allow a to get throught, I use $ CONSOLE CONNECT/BREAK=CTRL_D node - this would transparently let get through. If you accidently type CTRL-D (less typical keystroke for VMS system managers), you'll get the above prompt and reply N and nothing happens.

As said, the abilitya and commands to disable BREAK on the console depends on your type of systems.

Volker.
Lawrence Czlapinski
Trusted Contributor

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Susan, the systems received breaks (when the terminal server went down) on the console lines which caused them to halt the systems.
Unfortunately, if you disable break on the systems you wouldn't be able to remotely break from the console manager. However, you could remotely access, fix and/or crash the system if needed using Availibilty Manager.
Lawrence
John Lapchuk
Occasional Advisor

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

The outage you experienced was caused by the software version you are running on the DecServer. Version 1.1 has known (to HP) issues and HP suggests version 1.3 or better. Upgrade your DS700 software and problems will go away...

JohnL
"It's not a problem unless someone sees it..."

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

John,

I scanned my latest software product library and no sign of Decserver software. I can go search the website for it, but if you know where I can get it that would help expedite the process.

Thanks,

Susan
Volker Halle
Honored Contributor

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Susan,

the latest release of the DECserver 700 software (UPI: XA5 SPD 38.73) is available on the Layered Products CDs is V1.1C (saveset name DS7C011 on the Q2/2003 Alpha LP CDs).

The DECserver business has been transferred to Digital Networks many years ago (www.dnpg.com).

There is also DECserver Network Access Software (DNAS) (UPI: 0LW), which also runs on DECserver 700, but is not and seems to have never been on the OpenVMS LP CDs.

I've also found a NAECO02022 ECO kit for the DNS software on the HP FTP site, but it's access restricted.

Volker.

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Volker,

Thanks. I looked and looked for 1.3 as John had suggested but with no luck. I wonder where he got the 1.3 information.

I will have to go to storage to dig out Q2/2003. Will DS7C011 provide anything more than DS7A011? By the way, I have not tried to change the BREAK command yet :), nor have I had time to look at Availability Manager as Lawerence suggested. I was thinking I could upgrade the software if it will help.

Regards,

Susan
Veli Körkkö
Trusted Contributor

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

What kind of VMS hosts these were? Some VAXen are halted using control-P ("big iron" models), some other are halted using BREAK (microVAX typically), some have choice w.r.t. halting method like

>>> set controlp enable

Pretty much all Alphas are halted using control-P so I suspect your VMS nodes were VAX, maybe the smaller ones which are halted either always or by default using BREAK.

If the systems allow choice, change them to be halted using control-P.

_veli

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Veli,

Thanks, but three are alphas and one is an old VAX 4000-90. Volker had suggested I change the BREAK command to prevent a failure of the terminal server from taking the systems down again in the future. I think the terminal server sent 'garbage' that eventually sent a HALT or BREAK command to my systems that were connected to the terminal server using the CA (old polycenter) Console Manager SW. I need to be able to console connect to the system and send a break when I need to, but I also want to prevent another terminal server failure from bringing the systems down.

Regards,

Susan
John Lapchuk
Occasional Advisor

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Susan-
The software came from our HP rep... Will ask the rep what the license limitations are, and if I'd be able to send you a copy...

JohnL

Network Access SW V1.3 for DS700-16 BL80-27 ROM V4.0-0 Uptime: 2 00:10:52

Address: 08-00-2B-3D-6B-DC Name: DECS06 Number: 0

Software: WWENG2XXX

Service Groups: 0

Enabled Characteristics:
Announcements, Broadcast, Dump, Lock
"It's not a problem unless someone sees it..."

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Thanks, John!

Look forward to hearing what your HP rep says. I will see what I can find out from our people here in the mean time.

Regards,

Susan
Volker Halle
Honored Contributor
Solution

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Susan,

here is a pointer to the current DNAS software, which is being maintained and developed by Digital networks. They are now at V3.2

http://www.dnpg.com/tech_doc_dnas.asp

Volker.

Re: Decserver 700 Crashes VMS Systems?

Volker,

Wow. Thanks! Guess I am a little outdtated here :)

Regards,

Susan