> Wow - I'm impressed - I thought I was being very vague :-) - That is exactly
Seen it far too many times before - can spot it a mile away :)
> the problem - software broken, ppl who wrote it claim it is a network
But of course :)
>> > What about wandering over to the computer center and asking them - there
> > were a few damn good techies there when I was in UCC (but that was a while
> > ago :) Unless of course they are the people who told you it was your
> > network that was broken :)
>> No I can't do that - I need an independant consultant that I can honestly say
> I have no professional relationship with (I work in UCC).
>> > If you give us more details of what constitutes 'working correctly' and
> > what the network is comprised of we can be of more help - if it's a
> > cisco based network - then you'll want cisco certified people (CCNP /
> > CCIE)... if it's based on horse drawn carriages then you'll need a
> > farrier... :)
> Well it is only a small network of 5 computers with 100-base-T Ethernet
> hub/nics - I kinda need ppl with general network experience - i.e. that can
> test the physical links, the cards and the hub and certify they are working
Erm - what OS ?
Do you have a Unix machine anywhere there ?
Is there any intelligence in the hubs ? (or are they truly dumb as a ditch ?)
Simplest way to identify if there is an intermittent problem is :
a/ Clock sync *everything* so all logs can be easily matched and cross
There should be at least one NTP server left in cs.ucc.ie, if not
a couple of others around the college
b/ Clear all counters on any interfaces / switch ports
c/ Setup one machine (possibly Linux/solaris) to run netsaint and monitor
availability of all machines
d/ Setup same linux/solaris box to run mtr (http://www.bitwizard.nl/mtr/)
against every machine
e/ Sit back an wait for the software to fall over
Match your logs and look for anything odd on the network at the time
of the software dying. (ie: did you get dropped packets to any machine)
On a local lan you should have 0% packet loss (especially for 5 machines on
a 100Mb ethernet network)
Check all of the interfaces that you have error / stats counters on and see
if there are any faults reports
If this problem really exists, then having continual automatic monitoring is
only way to find it - bringing in a consultant may not spot the problem... but
you have a real problem that you can see (one of the machines is getting 10%
packet loss over the period of a day) then you have something firm to get the
consultant to find.
If you have this running for a whole week, and you can show the software
that you have 100% availability of the network for all machines for a whole
week (168 hours) and that their software failed 10 times during this period -
you put yourself in a better position to argue the case.
Anyway - what kind of failure are you seeing on the software ? Any well written
software (in the internet age) should handle packet loss - especially if they
are using TCP.
>> The software ppl are suggesting that our network cards are dropping 1k "now
> and then" causing their software to fail - me getting strong unpleasant smell
Can they demonstrate this packet loss ?
What kind of cards are they ?
>> Thomas B. Quillinan
> Centre for Unified Computing (http://www.cuc.ucc.ie)
> Go to http://www.csn.ul.ie/cgi-bin/finger.cgi?tom for my PGP Key
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