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On a openvz hostnode some vps didn't shut down properly. There is no separate partition for /vz, they run in root. When restarting a vps OR copying a big file vz-dump (ca. 28GB) from one folder to another, the server freezes and is not reachable via ssh anymore. Maybe due to a corruption in the file system?

Do I need to boot into recovery mode without mounting the root file system to perform fschk? What do you suggest?

[root@CentOS-60-64-minimal log]# fdisk -l

Disk /dev/sda: 1499.2 GB, 1499212021760 bytes 64 heads, 32 sectors/track, 1429760 cylinders Units = cylinders of 2048 * 512 = 1048576 bytes Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes Disk identifier: 0x0001d8c4

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System /dev/sda1 2 2048 2096128 82 Linux swap / Solaris /dev/sda2 2049 2560 524288 83 Linux /dev/sda3 2561 1429760 1461452800 83 Linux

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Yes, you do need to have a filesystem unmounted before doing an fsck, so booting into recovery mode is 1 solution. Depending on the layout of your disk you might be able to unmount the partition in question, fsck, then remount it.

That said, I wonder if the problem is software - I have not come across an issue like you describe being a software one before, but it is common if the harddrive is starting to fail (in a recent case even when 1 disk backing a software raid failed).

The first steps I would be taking would be to look at the logs to see if there are any messages associated with disk failures. I'd also query the S.M.A.R.T data on the drive(s) an see what their internal view is.

Another possibility is swap - If your system is swapping quite a lot then things grind to a near halt. You might get some traction by reducing the amount of swap substantially and playing with VM.SWAPPINESS, but this is a double edged sword, and could make your system more unstable if you don't have enough RAM (but at least it can be used to scope out the possibility of problems with too much swapping)

Please note that I do not use OpenVZ, so all this is generic in nature (I use KVM), but I think what I have written holds true regardless of what you are running.

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