So last night I spoke of some issue I was having regarding the FreeNAS installation I was working with. It appears things aren’t much better, and far less conclusive so far. It seems like I’m discovering more issues than really resolving them at this point.
- Let me state more exactly what my issue(s) are:
- After large transfers (particularly with files >4GB in size) are initiated, the network connection hangs before the transfer finishes; I’ve never finished a 50+GB transfer yet
- I cannot access the fileserver in the least: no webGUI, no Transmission webGUI, no SSH
- Pinging the fileserver results in 100% packet loss
- The terminal on the fileserver box itself is still functional; I can reboot the system and issue other commands just fine
- Restarting the network interface restores functionality (by
ifconfig re0 downand
ifconfig re0 down)
- This was first seen using AFP for file transfers; NFS fared no better yesterday evening, nor did CIFS/SMB
- Hardware operating the machine (gutted from old machines, but runs stably):
- Asus M4A78LT-M LE motherboard
- Athlon II X3 2.6GHz CPU unleashed to run as a (reported) Phenom II X4 B25 2.7GHz CPU
- 2GB DDR3 1066MHz RAM
- 6x SATAII Seagate drives
- Netgear GA311 Gigabit NIC
Going to the FreeNAS forums in search of some help wasn’t the most productive. As with many community-driven projects, forums regulars really emphasize search and self-education first. So upon trying to identify my problem, the “Q: When I tried drag and drop or copy and paste the server started transfer/copy then reboots/freezes/hangs. Is there a way to fix this? question seemed to be most akin to my problems. Looking through the responses, I knew I wasn’t dumb enough to share the root folder. I ran a memory tester overnight last night and all thirteen passes of the RAM passed error-free. This morning before I left for work, I ran a stress-tester on the CPU (as it’s an unlocked CPU…lord knows what state that fourth core was in) and it crunched 350+TFLOP-worth without any failed iterations, so it did not look like a CPU issue either. This basically left me to wonder if it’s the NIC or the software crapping out.
I stumbled across some information earlier this evening that showed BitTorrent causing some issues with the stability of FreeNAS. Upon shutting down the BitTorrent service, I finally broke the 8-10GB marker I was suffering through for a while. I made a solid transfer of ~23GB of mixed files to the ZFS pool without a hitch! I bumped it up to a ~60GB transfer and it decided to hang just after passing the 50GB mark. Unlike before, the webGUI was still responsive and I could SSH into the box1. Upon restart, I said to hell with it (the logs weren’t really telling me anything) and just decided to switch to using an old 10/100 Netgear FA312 NIC to see if maybe it’s just some issue between the NICs.
I dumped a 95+GB transfer from the Finder into one of the ZFS pools. We’re currently sitting around 32GB transferred and still rolling at ~10.5MB/s. I’m not a huge fan of taking this huge hit from ~40MB/s over BaseT/1000, but BaseT/100 is better than nothing if it will stably transfer everything. If the FA312 manages to survive this, then I’ve obviously got issues on hand.
- I need to tweak the Netgear GA311 drivers/interface commands to get it to survive these enormous transfer loads
- If tweaking the drivers/interface doesn’t work, I may (potentially) have a defective card?
- I need to figure out if Transmission trashing through the BitTorrent service is a bug or if it is a misconfiguration of the service
I obviously have some work to do in order to get this box stabilized and running at (expected) spec. Times like this make me, a) wish I played around with Unix and BSD more back in the day, or b) wish I wasn’t such a nerd with this much attention for detail.
smbdwas stuck in
sbwaitfor lord knows how long. Killing the process didn’t help; I had to eventually reboot the machine.