Server spinning out of control...
jamie at gnulife.org
Mon Jul 28 14:44:33 PDT 2003
We've got a server that occassionally becomes temporarily useless
because the load average shoots up to around 150.0 or so, and then slowly
winds down over a 2 minute period. I cannot seem to find the process which
is putting so much load on the machine. I've tried running top with the q
switch, as well as the "I" switch, and when top opens, I can't see
anything consuming large amounts of CPU power or consuming much memory,
but the load average will be incredibly high. There isn't anything unusual
in /var/log/messages to indicate anything which might be causing the load
average to go shooting through the ceiling.
This happens for about a minute, and then the machine comes back slowly
again after a period of about 2 minutes.
Does anyone have any ideas how we can figure out what process/processes
might be doing this? We're running FreeBSD 3.4, and it's running as a
mailserver with Sendmail.
We know that the machine
needs to be reloaded with something newer, but this is a big production
machine and we've got a lot of engineering to do before we can get it up,
so yes, upgrading the OS will happen soon, but until then, we would really
like to trace this problem.
"A friend is someone who lets you have total freedom to be yourself."
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