Windows Server Operating System

Setting up the kernel debugger

  1. Download Windows Debugging Tools here.  Note that there are 32 and 64-bit versions of the debugger.

  2. Read the Debugging Tools and Symbols Getting Started page.  Be sure to scroll down to the section on using the Microsoft symbol server.

  3. Alternately, you can download the entire set of operating system symbols in order to access them locally.  The download files are pretty big: 500 -750 MB.

Copying large files may cause SQL Server or other programs to page out to disk under certain circumstances.  A knowledgebase article titled You may experience a decrease in overall system performance when you are copying files that are larger than approximately 500 MB in Windows Server 2003 SP1 or in Windows Server 2003 SP2 details how a Session Manager memory setting can cause the OS to set aside too much memory for the Lazy Writer.  This causes programs like SQL Server to get their working set trimmed.  The fix is the latest service pack, a registry change and a reboot.

Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 2 includes the Scalable Networking pack that is described in Knowledge Base article 912222.  One component, TCP Chimney Offload, can cause a number of problems.  For starters, it will break WireShark or any WinPCap dependent application.  Further it can cause error messages like General Network Error or Communication link failure.  Check out this link for more:

Automating Windows Performance Logging startup
    Applies to: W2k3, XP

  1. Using the Performance MMC, create a set of counter logs.
  2. Use a specific name to save the settings, e.g., SQLPERF.
  3. At the command prompt, try starting and stopping performance logging using the logman.exe utility:
    1. logman start sqlperf
    2. logman stop sqlperf
  4. Set the Windows registry to automatically start performance counters at system startup
    1. Open the Registry Editor, regedit.exe.
    2. Navigate to HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
    3. Add a string value. A good name would be logman.
    4. Set the value equal to logman start sqlperf (or the command in step 4.a. that successfully started performance logging).