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Citrix Xen Server - VM freeze

Daniel Halter




XenServer build date: 014.09.26

XenServer build number: 70446c

Xen Server version: 6.2

Local storage 1: 542.1 GB 

Local storage 2: 1863 GB


Server: HP ProLiant ML350 Gen9

Storage Controller: Smart Array P440ar


The situation

The XenServer has two local storage. A virtual machine is equipped with Windowsd Server 2008R2 and an Exchange 2010.

This vm is called "VM1". VM1 has a vdisk1 on local storage 1 with 350GB. This is drive C:


A) While backing up this VM, it freezes; it is a Windows backup, not a guest backup The backup can be done with Windows' own backup or with other backup software, it always freezes.


B) If you copy larger files to a remote network drive, freezes also occur.


C) If you add this "vdisk1" to another machine, the same problem happens, it freezes. All other VMs on the "local storage 1" run without problems, no freezes, no delays, nothing, completely normal. Is the problem anchored deep in the VM or does the Xen server have problems with certain sectors or blocks or do I know what to read or write. There is a kind of "checkdisk" chkdsk for the Citrix XenServer, as well as at Microsoft. Does somebody has any idea ?














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Firstly, XenServer 6.2 is long out of support and you should be planning to update to a newer supported version, no security mitigations for CPU data leakage issues (SPECTRE, MELTDOWN) have been release for XenServer 6.2 so you are running at increased risk of being a victim of a compromise.


This sounds like this may be an interaction between the storage and network (assuming the backup is going over the network to some remote storage?). There haven't been any new Windows Guest drivers for 6.2 for a long time (as it's out of support) but you should check that you have the latest that were available.

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If its just one VM I suppose one could just rebuild the VM. You might want to look in /var/SMlog if you think its storage related.

I would think its possible to have a bad spot on a hard drive that only affects one VM. XenServer 6.2 out of date, Windows 2008

and Exchange 2010 soon to be out of date so all need upgraded ! Lucky you.  You could try to shut that VM down and do a VM 

full copy and see if the full copy exhibits the same behavior. If so its something internal with the VM. Maybe a chkdsk within

the VM could repair it if its just a file table issue. If not a rebuild is likely in order.  To me if nothing shows up in /var/SMlog then

its likely not XenServer and something with the VM.




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