SUMMARY : system lockup

From: John Reynolds (
Date: Tue Apr 22 1997 - 13:32:30 CDT

You have to love a mailing list where you start getting answers
before you get your own copy of the question.

The original :

> We are using SPARCstation 5s running SunOS 4.1.3_U1 as an operator's
> platform for a product. We have several hundred of them in use. Most
> of the customization of the OS has been kernel parameter stuff, like
> increasing MAXUSERS. We have added the SUN Serial/Parallel Controller
> interface, and a lightpen from Interactive COmputer Products. The user
> interface is X11R5, based on OSF/Motif.
> Lately, we have started seeing workstations lock up completely : the
> output to the monitor is stopped, the pointer does not move with the
> mouse, even STOP-A on the keyboard does nothing. The operators have to
> cycle power to get the workstation restarted.
> There is an occaisional message of "xdballoc: out of dblks" in
> /var/adm/messages, but it is not consistent. Since the system has to
> be turned off, there's no way to get a coredump. Only a few systems
> have reported this problem.
> Our customers can lose a few thousand $$$ of product when this happens,
> so there is a considerable amount of heat on.
> So, what I would very much like to know is :
> What can cause a system to lock itself up so drastically as to ignore
> What is the xdballoc message trying to tell me, and how do I fix it?
> Thanks greatly!
And the replies :
From: Craig Singer <>

I searched Sunsolve ( ) for "xdballoc" and it
looks like you need a patch. I've included two descriptions below. The
first patch is obsoleted by the 2nd, so you should install the 2nd.

OBSOLETE Patch-ID# 100255-01
Keywords: xdballoc: out of dblks
Synopsis: OBSOLETED by 100359 xdballoc: out of dblks, then a "printf"
          to console hangs system

Patch-ID# 100359-08
Keywords: panic assertion, console printf hangs, setrun, process,
interrupt, poll
Synopsis: SunOS 4.1.1;4.1.2;4.1.3: streams jumbo patch
I guess I missed this one; I was looking for 4.1.3_U1 specifically.

And :
From: (

We had 10/20's with similar problems under heavy useage.

ALL these problems went away with patch 101508

I think this is a valid patch for SPARC-5's
I have 101508-15 in place, but not 100359. It's certainly worth a try!

Thanks also to (Marc S. Gibian)
Sun Manager from Hell <>

John Reynolds
Applied Materials i am over six feet
2901 Patrick Henry Dr. MS 5502 and go everywhere
Santa Clara CA 95054
(408) 235-6352 -archy the cockroach

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