We recently moved our users Home folders and shared drives onto a Novell OES server from a Novell Netware 6.5 server. All the folders are stored on a LeftHand SAN attached to the server through an iSCSI connection.

In certain labs in one of our buildings, explorer freezes/crashes on workstations when trying to access certain folders en mass.(a group of 30 students at once) This is intermittent, and usually happens for 3-5 machines. This does not happen at any of our other labs/buildings, but we have eliminated every on site possibility we can think of. (computer images, wiring, switches, fibre, computer hardware, etc.)

If I put these folders back on the Netware server, we do not have the crashing issue. We are trying to get rid of all our Netware, so keeping this configuration is not possible.

We have been trying to isolate the issue, but have not had much luck.

Long story short, any idea what we can do to find what the issue is? I have been looking at performance data of the Lefthand SAN, but everything seems to be in order.

  • Have you enough local storage to move these off the Lefthand and test?
    – Chopper3
    Feb 3 '10 at 13:42

We liked non-dedicated servers in 2.x, but they said all 3.x servers would be dedicated (boy, nobody will understand this joke today)

We liked Bindery, but they forced us to move to NDS in 4.x

We liked IPX, but they forced us to move to IP in 5.x

We liked NetWare, after all, but now they try to force us to move to Linux in 6.x

The decision is yours. Decide carefully

  • 2
    Excellent, that brought a tear to my eye.
    – Helvick
    Feb 3 '10 at 23:50

OES-on-Linux requires more CPU for processing NCP connections than NetWare did. The reasons for this are many, but the fact is that umpteen connections on NetWare will spike CPU to, say, 40%, and the same connections to OES will run the load-average over the number of processors in the system. This is particularly evident in the sorts of high-concurrency situations that the education environment promotes. When load-average spikes over the number of CPU's performance at the client side REALLY drops off.

Also, keep in mind that Novell made some serious improvements to Open Enterprise Server between OES-fcs, OES-SP1, OES-SP2, and even OES2, OES2-SP1. If you're not on OES2 yet, get there. Also, if you're not running 64-bit you really need to look hard at doing that. The 32-bit Linux kernel has some caching constraints that hamstring a fileserver like OES, and the 64-bit kernel is much more forgiving in that aspect.

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