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SubjectReview: Servercrash with kernel SuSE 2.4.16

This is the actual result of the analys of our oracle server crashes on
linux servers with suse Enterprise Server 7 and Kernel 2.4.16

The reason for theses crashes where the compaq remote inside and compaq
health drivers. These drivers are deliverd from compaq. On stardup of these
agents, they load binary kernel modules, which are very version sensitive.
This modules corrupt the virtual memory management of the server on heavy

This shows us a main problem of Linux in datacenter environment. The
automatic guarding of the local attached storage and the hardware is very
importend in this environments. In this environment we use expensive high
performance hardware. These hardware is not good supported by the
standard linux kernel. The companies which sell these hardware deliver not
all features of these hardware to the community of linux. There drivers
and guarding agents are not distributed under GPL.

Here is the statement of Compaq ( HPQ)

The new health driver that can be run on any re-compiled kernel is due
out in the SmartStart 5.50 timeframe (3Q02). The reason for this is
that it also provides support for new servers as well.
The delivery method will be via the Compaq web site and the SmartStart

The customer expectation is that it will work with any re-compiled
kernel. Most likely that will be true however it will be impossible for
us to validate it with every possibility due to the open source nature
of Linux.

Today, customers actually can run the existing health driver on
re-compiled kernels by evoking a "fix-up" script that will be available
on our website. This is not an ideal solution but it will work in a
majority of the situations.

Thank you very much for all the help with this problem

Oliver Schersand

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