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network connectivity fails during load-tried 2 PC's, 3 ISP's

by drcain / February 4, 2008 7:50 PM PST

Hello all,
I'm completely desparate. I'm experienced IT administrator but for several months I'm unable to find a reason for network connectivity failures on PC's with high netowrk traffic, running Windows (Vista, XP). Here's what happens:
- while doing excesive network operations (creating many connection threads) the connectivity dies - nothing works: no ping, DHCP requests without response, DNS requests without response, etc.
- ipconfig /release /renew doesn't help
- disable/enable network interface doesn't help
- plug out/in the network cable for several minutes doesn't help
- only thing that helps is complete windows reboot

-> I have observed this behavior for example when listing a network shared folder with thousands of files (net failes during listing), or when copying many small files over network (again, windows network sharing)
-> problem also observed when seeding torrents
-> problem also occures while downloading a torrent with good speed (2 mB/s, 20 mbit/s) from several peers

The thing that bothers me most is that I have completely eliminated most obvious possible causes (failing network interface, failing router, ISP blocking excesive traffic, operating system/drivers problem):
- same thing happens when connected to three different ISP's (at work, at home, at parents home)
- same thing happens on two different PC's (one running Win XP Pro SP2, second one running Vista64)

Does ANYBODY have an idea what's wrong? This problem is relatively fresh, I didn't encounter it like 6 months ago, and I didn't change the way I'm using my computers at all - always running the same apps for several years, I've been always making the same occasional high-load network operations. Systems are being updated regularly of course.

Eventlog seems clean - no network related errors reported prior to failure, after failure there are errors reported only by few components and only during the time I'm trying to get the connectivity up without restarting windows.

Somebody please help me dig into this problem!

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What happens after a clean install of Windows?
by Kees Bakker / February 4, 2008 8:05 PM PST

Without torrent-based software, of course. Just plain old Windows. Internet disconnected. Then start accessing the network shared folders until you reach a limit or get this error.

Kees

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RE: What happens after a clean install of Windows?
by drcain / February 4, 2008 8:17 PM PST

I have tried something similar. It's not a nework completely without internet connectivity, but it's a network where I have access to local intranet only (10.x.x.x subnets), all outside connectivity is provided through simple http proxy. No ports forwarded. No torrents. Clean windows install (XP SP2). Accessing network shares with thousands of files causes this failure.

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Then it might be a limitation of Windows.
by Kees Bakker / February 4, 2008 8:37 PM PST

Contacted Microsoft already?

Kees

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RE: Then it might be a limitation of Windows.
by drcain / February 4, 2008 8:52 PM PST

Yes, there might be a limitiation, but then there has to be a way to determine what exact limits am I reaching and to configure the windows or the software to avoid this limitation.
I din't try to contact MS yet, my experience is that a one can find faster and better solution on the web than from MS support. Contacting MS support would be the final desperate step Happy

But - why everyone at work can access and copy the very same files over the local intranet shares but me? Why there are thousands of people in the world leaving their computers running 24/7 to seed torrents, only I have to reboot all the time?

I have found several people posting the same problem I have on other forums, but there was never a solution and the people posting the problem were usually inexperienced to dig deeper in the problem. That's why I started a thread here on CNet, where I hope I will find someone who has seen and fixed this before.

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SOLUTION FOUND !! (for Win Vista both 32 and 64 bit)
by drcain / March 9, 2008 7:10 PM PDT

Hello,

I'm just writing this in case anyone else with the same problem founds this thread through Google or anything else.

I have found the problem and fixed it. This problem occurs because of a bug in the WinSock bind() function. There is a hotfix for this at Microsoft support site (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/937168). After applying, I've never had any problems with the network ever since, no matter how much I was stressing the internet connection. Don't know if this problem is also the case with Win XP SP2 problems though - I don't have the OS anymore, so I didn't dig around XP very much.

The hotfix should be also included in Vista SP1, so everyone who doesn't want to mess around with not fully tested hotfixes in their system can simply wait for the Vista SP1 to be released.

- DrC -

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That's for ICS
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 10, 2008 1:24 AM PDT

Not many need or use ICS anymore.

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ICS need
by drcain / March 10, 2008 1:38 AM PDT
In reply to: That's for ICS

True, but many users have ICS service running and don't even know about it.

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