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Old 10-15-2007, 05:39 AM   #1
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Question Server having trouble serving dynamic pages, though 'top' looks good

Hi, I've got a dedicated server at fasthosts, running (an old version of) fedora. Until friday, the server was running really very smooth. On one domain, I needed to upgrade wordpress, so i did. Now, I don't know if this has anything to do with it, as upgrading wordpress just changes some tables in its own database, but since i did that, the server doesn't seem to be able to serve dynamic pages on any domain no more, especially for people outside the UK. UK people have problems too, but outsiders have more of it. It can't really be traffic, as there hasn't been a serious increase since friday.

I'v rebooted (a few times), repaired all mysql databases on the server, but nothing seems to help. I just don't know enough about linux (well: newbie) to know what I should do next. I guess checking the server configuration(s), but I wouldn't know where to start. That's why I post this question here: please tell me what to do next. (I asked for engineer support at fasthost, but that might take 6 to 7 days until they can look at it they say... I don't think the website owners are going to like their sites being like they are for a week very much so I guess it's up to me to get the server tuned again, or solving whatever is causing these problems.)

I've been disabling, one by one, all websites n the server last night. Even when there was only one simple one left, and 'top' was hardly showing any action at all, I still had the problem that pages weren't served 100%. (Sometimes, a page gets sent 2 or 3 times, the screen flickers, and in the end you get a "page cannot display". I've as well disabled MySQL, that neither changed anything with regards to the problem. Does anyone recognize this problem?


p.s. The server is running quite an old version of fedora (FC3), but I don't really see how that could cause this problem. Anyway, could upgrading fedora help?
Old 10-15-2007, 06:32 AM   #2
Registered: Apr 2005
Location: UK
Distribution: Slackware 13.0
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If top shows nothing, then you're not looking at a CPU or RAM problem.

You *might* have a rootkit on the computer and that *might* be lying about how much CPU is being used etc. Run something like rkhunter etc. to double-check. You might also make sure that it's not spewing out spam email while you are there - look for rogue programs etc. This is more likely if you're aren't keeping the machine up-to-date... even older versions of programs have to be upgraded to stop them being compromised, especially if they are on a remote server accessible to the Internet.

More likely, a network connection problem is the cause. This could be as simple as a faulty or incorrect DNS server - this will cause hangs in certain scripts as they will be trying to lookup "localhost" etc. for themselves. You might find that your DNS daemon (usually bind) is crashing or not starting, or you might find that your upstream DNS isn't working. Try "dig"ing a few domain names while logged into the server.

But, by the way you're saying that UK customers are affected more, I'd say it was a transit issue at fasthosts - I bet their network connection on your particular server is just saturated.

Upgrading fedora will be more than a little upheaval for you. I wouldn't recommend it.
Old 10-15-2007, 08:47 AM   #3
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Thanks Ledow!

I'll start looking into your suggestions. About fasthost and UK -> it seems that people in the UK have less problems than outside the UK, although UK people have problems too.

I'll try looking into the DNS things first.

I've checked about upgrading fedora, but reading about it was rather discouraging.

The rest on the server, php, apache etc is all up to date however.


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