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Since a hour, apache stopped responding. I can reach the server with putty and the average load is only a few percent. Apache is (re)starting without error. If it helps: this morning the server turned itself magically off but in this case it's still on, it worked all day without any further problems.

I have absolutely no idea what to look/search for :(

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Servers don't turn themselves off "magically". – ceejayoz Jan 27 '13 at 19:07
I know, it probably crashed – LHolleman Jan 27 '13 at 19:13
So take a look in /var/log/httpd or /var/log/apache2 or similar and see what the error logs show. – ceejayoz Jan 27 '13 at 19:27
You don't need a Q&A site you need education and a consultant. – Iain Jan 27 '13 at 21:19

If it were me I'd....

  • start with top - always the first place to look when things are amiss - is the load average too high? Too low?

  • next, netstat -nap | less - is the webserver listening on the relevant ports?

  • if apache is running, then check the webserver logs - is any traffic going through? Anny errors logged?

  • then the messages log - is the firewall blocking traffic? Is there anything else amiss?

this morning the server turned itself magically off

Does the error log show it being shutdown? If not, does the messages log show the oom killer terminating processes?

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