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SBS 2011 - network delays RRS feed

  • Question

  • After moving from SBS 2003 to SBS 2011 on new hardware, we experience annoying delays when opening files on network shares. For example, when double clicking a Word document to open it, it takes a couple of seconds before anything happens. We didn't experience this behaviour with the old server; A Pentium 4 3 GHz with 2 GB RAM and 1 Gbit network. The new server is a Dell Poweredge T310 with A Xeon X3480, 16 GB RAM and also 1 Gbit network (Broadcom BCM5716C NetXtremeII).

    I've been fiddling with the network settings and disabled QoS and 'Link Layer Topology' stuff, but that doesn't make a difference. Also looked at the network driversettings and all settings with 'offload' in their name are enabled.

    Now this delay can have a multitude of causes, so I wonder how to find out the cause and how to solve it?

    Simon 


    • Edited by Simon Weel Wednesday, November 16, 2011 12:54 PM
    Wednesday, November 16, 2011 12:49 PM

Answers

  • Seems like the problem is fixed by updating the firmware of the Dell Powerconnect 5524 switch. After a restart of the switch, the network performance of the server took off to about 70% when copying a large file from the network. Before the update, the network utilization didn't get higher as 5%.

    Simon

    • Marked as answer by Simon Weel Wednesday, November 23, 2011 11:01 AM
    Wednesday, November 23, 2011 11:01 AM

All replies

  • Hi Simon,

    There was a known network performance issue http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2493361 the hotfix is included within Windows 2008 R2 SP1 make sure you have installed this update. It is an optional update so you have to approve it manualy within the SBS Console, Security, Updates, right click the update at optional updates and choose deploy the update.


    Regards Ronny
    -------------
    Visit my Blog or follow me on Twitter
    Wednesday, November 16, 2011 8:58 PM
  • Hi, If what Ronny says doesn't work check your Anti Virus on the server.  We were running Symantec EndPoint and it made saving files to the server a pain!  You can just disable the service and try it to see if that's it.  We turned off Network scanning of files on the server Anti Virus and it has been great since!

     

     

    Brian

    Wednesday, November 16, 2011 11:59 PM
  • There was a known network performance issue http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2493361 the hotfix is included

    I checked the file 'tdx.sys' mentioned in the article, and the one installed is newer then the file in the hotfix, so I guess I'm allright here. I will look into the virusscanner (Norman NPRO) to see what happens if I switch it off.

    Simon

    Thursday, November 17, 2011 11:22 AM
  • i've been fiddling several things. Switching off Norman NPRO doesn't make a difference. Yesterday, I've been digging into document 'Performance Tuning Guidelines for Windows Server 2008 R2' (http://www.google.nl/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=Performance+Tuning+Guidelines+for+Windows+Server+2008+R2&source=web&cd=2&ved=0CDQQFjAB&url=http%3A%2F%2Fdownload.microsoft.com%2Fdownload%2F8%2FF%2F9%2F8F9CB30B-1617-4CF8-8534-9C2AAA0117F4%2FPerf-tun-srv-R2.docx&ei=q1zLTqecNoPsOdLx3YsP&usg=AFQjCNF1xSJwRcmMcfjL8APSOtxpf2mAzw&cad=rjt) and made some changes to networek settings (page 22) like increasing the size of send/receive buffers. And on page 61 and 67, there are some registry settings to optimize the server / client for fileservices. I changed the registry entries to the recommended values, restarted SBS 2011 server and Win 7 Pro client, but there's performance gain.

    The delay in opening files is very noticable with PDF files. We use Foxit reader version 4, which is placed on a network share. When opening a PDF file, it takes quite some time to load Foxit Reader and when loaded, it takes again quite some time to open the PDF file.

    When the stuff resided on the old SBS 2003 server, Foxit Reader and PDF's opened allmost instantly. And the same applies to other files...

    Simon

    Tuesday, November 22, 2011 8:37 AM
  • Did some more investigation. Read http://mscerts.programming4.us/windows_server/Windows%20Server%202008%20%20%20Monitoring%20System%20Performance%20(part%201)%20-%20Key%20Elements%20to%20Monitor%20for%20Bottlenecks.aspx and monitored the system memory and pagefile usage. The article says that if "page faults per second" is getting beyond several hundreds for a longer time, I should investigate other memory counters to track the bottle neck. Well, in my case, the 'Page Faults/sec' reads an average 6000, so it looks like there's a problem here. But what memory counters do I have to track?

    Another important counter is "Pages per second". In my case, this one reads an average 290. Again according to the article, if this value is higher then 10, it is 'thrashing', which should never occur.

    So one would expect the machine to have too little memory. But when I start the Task Manager and take a look at the 'Performance' tab, the part reading 'Physical memory' lists: Total: 16367. Cached: 7950. Available: 7938. Fee: 0. Kernel memory: Paged: 435. Nonpaged: 233. System: Handles: 75940. Threads: 3036. Processes: 140. Commit (GB): 18 / 31. CPU usage is an average 5%.

    I'm at the point I don't have a clue what to do?

    Simon

    Tuesday, November 22, 2011 1:10 PM
  • Seems like the problem is fixed by updating the firmware of the Dell Powerconnect 5524 switch. After a restart of the switch, the network performance of the server took off to about 70% when copying a large file from the network. Before the update, the network utilization didn't get higher as 5%.

    Simon

    • Marked as answer by Simon Weel Wednesday, November 23, 2011 11:01 AM
    Wednesday, November 23, 2011 11:01 AM