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AskPerf Team on troubleshooting Windows server hangs

Sep 25

Written by:
Tuesday, September 25, 2007 9:59:49 AM  RssIcon

Since server hangs is an often reported issue on Terminal Server environments due to high resource depletion, I thought it would be best to post this blog entry under the SBC blog even though it largely applies to all Windows Server environments.  The Windows Server Performance Team blogged about methods to troubleshoot server hangs today and it boils down to these steps:
  1. Is this a hard or soft hang?  If this is a hard hang, then the odds are that there is an underlying hardware issue, so contact your hardware vendor.
  2. Check the Event logs for any events in the System Log at the time of the hang.  In the case of Pool Depletion, you will see Event ID's 2019 or 2020 with the Event Source being SRV
  3. Launch Performance Monitor and check the starting value for Free System PTE's under the Memory object.  If a system is booting up with fewer Free System PTE's than is normal (around 15,000 or fewer), then that is not a good sign.  That means that all the PTE's are being consumed at startup leaving fewer resources available for the normal server operations.
  4. Set up a Performance Monitor log and let it run for a while.  At the very minimum, add the counters for Memory, Process, Processor and System.  The length of time that you need to let it run will depend on how long the system takes to hang (assuming that this is happening repeatedly).  Set the interval so that you can capture at least a hundred samples over the life of the log.  Any low memory condition should be readily apparent - especially if it is a steady leak.
  5. Finally, follow the steps in KB Article 244139 to prepare the system to capture a complete memory dump for analysis if needed.
I'd highly recommend a read of the whole article here.

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