Server failure

loocas | hardware,miscellaneous,technical | Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

I had to deal with two, moderately serious, server issues at the studio.

The first one was rather strange as I was adding another render node to the loop and I wanted to check whether everything is fine with the machine, so I physically logged in to the server as an Administrator and checked the Remote Desktop connection to the newly added render node. All was fine so I logged off and that’s when the entire operating system got stuck. I only saw the “Logging Off” message for hours without change. I couldn’t log back in, I couldn’t log in remotely, I couldn’t restart the machine. So I had to hard-reset the server, which I wasn’t really happy about as I was afraid the RAID drives might have failed or anything else could have gone wrong. Luckily, nothing serious happened, I only had to manually jump-start some of the services I need to run for my studio infrastructure, but that was it.

Now the second one was a joke. Since the Windows Update offered me about gazillion updates I decided to update the server since I didn’t have any jobs in the queue at the time. However, as soon as the updates reached about 98% the server stopped responding. My entire local network was inaccessible from the outside and I was, basically, out of luck (remotly). So the next day I went to check on the status of the server and all I saw was a very unpleasant BSOD. Not even remotely as nice or appealing as the one you can see above this post.

So, generally speaking, I have no idea what went wrong and how to prevent it, aside from avoiding to locally log-in to the OS or performing a Windows Update. :)


  1. I’ve seen the “remote desktop, log off, server goes down” thing before – we have one server that always reboots if you log off from remote desktop. If it wasn’t our main SAN file server, I wouldn’t mind so much.

    Now, I just never log off, just disconnect.

    Comment by Mike — October 6, 2010 @ 09:40

  2. Yeah, so do I. That’s the weird thing. I just “accidetally” logged off as opposed to “locking” or “disconnecting” from the machine.

    Well, I’ll think twice next time… ;)

    Comment by loocas — October 6, 2010 @ 13:00

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