Random host reboots.

Discussions related to using VirtualBox on Windows hosts.

Random host reboots.

Postby dihaase » 6. Jul 2010, 15:47

Hello,

I am running version 3.2.4 r62467 of VirtualBox on a Windows 7 64-bit host. What I am experiencing is that randomly the guest and host both will randomly reboot.

Environment:
Dell Precision M6500 i7 dual core laptop with 4Gb of RAM.
Host is Windows 7 64 bit.
Guest is Windows XP Professional 32-bit with SP3. (1.5Gb of RAM allocated)

This problem is extremely strange as nothing appears to crash, but simply a random reboot. I have looked through the event logs on both the guest and host and there is no trouble leading up to the reboot in the log. Simply a new event that the system restarted.

I have also done a hardware RAM test with both the dell memory diagnostics and Memtest86 version 4.0 running for 15 hours with no errors so I am not confident that it is a hardware issue.

Does anyone have any ideas of where I may start looking? Are there any other logs that may capture what is happening when the reboot occurs? It does not appear to be specific to any particuliar program.

Dean
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Re: Random host reboots.

Postby Perryg » 6. Jul 2010, 16:43

This is going to be hard to track down if no log shows an error. The fact that it reboots the host (Windows) sounds like a driver issue. It can be anything that tries to read protected memory. There are some things that you can do to test this though. Shut down everything that you do not need. Such as host-only network adapter if you are not using it, audio for the time being, 2D acceleration, (actually the 3D/2D has been an issue) and the USB support to the guest. If after this it still randomly reboots I would look at virus protection and see if that is trying to read data that is in protected memory. I usually set up an exception in my virus software to not read the .VirtualBox folder or the folder that has the .vdi files. Then install a virus package in the guest. This actually will improve the efficiency of the VM as well.

If this does in fact seem to fix your problem then you would need to turn them back on one at a time to see which one was actually causing the problem.
Additionally the 3D/2D issue is supposed to be fixed in the new release but the initial problem was having them both on at the same time. People found that turning off the 2D was all that was needed.
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Re: Random host reboots.

Postby mpack » 6. Jul 2010, 16:45

Well, if not an electronics failure, perhaps a power supply glitch? Have you done anything that might stress the power supply, such as add a second HDD to a PC with a low rated power supply? A mains surge protector may also help.
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Re: Random host reboots.

Postby dihaase » 15. Jul 2010, 17:53

Update ...
I have made the following changes:
1.) Turned off 3D Acceleration (Which was previously on)
2.) Turned off 2D Acceleration (Which was previously off)
3.) Disabled Audio (which was previously on)
4.) Set power management settings on the VM to be Always on. (No disabling or sleeping of anything.)

After doing this I am still experiencing random reboots of the host. Again, there is nothing logged in the event log other than "an un-expected reboot" notification. Additionally, there are no dump files generated on either the host or the guest .... ARGHHHH.

Any more ideas? The remaining items such as USB devices and Network integration (which is set to Bridged Adapter - Intel PRO/1000MT Desktop) I need in order to work, and thus if I remove them I cannot use the VM for anything meaningful. One other thought I had was to remove the Guest Additions since these also deal with graphics. However, I have had two instances of random reboots when the PC was sitting idle and no user interaction with the host or the guest. (Left to refill coffee and came back to a cleanly rebooted PC). Is this worth trying? Will I lose my USB integration if I do so?

The PC is a brand new DELL laptop precision M6500 which is otherwise operating normally so I don't think it is a hardware issue.
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Re: Random host reboots.

Postby dihaase » 15. Jul 2010, 18:23

Another update ...
I was working on a different VM that did not have access to the network and while the VM was running I changed the network setting for Adapter 1 from NAT to Bridged. When I acknowledged the change it was about 3-5 seconds and then my host rebooted. Seems to me that it may be a bridged networking issue.

Again, I am using a Bridged Adapter (Broadcom NetXtreme Gigabit Ethernet) with adapter type Intel PRO/1000 MT Desktop (8254OEM). Is there a better adapter type that I should choose or a different "Attached To" method that I should try? The NAT mode did not work for me as I could get to the internet, but could not access the normal LAN. i.e. shared drives on a server. Then I changed to Bridged which worked so I left it there.

What is the best networking type to use?
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Re: Random host reboots.

Postby Perryg » 15. Jul 2010, 18:43

I don't know if this will help you or not but I do not have this problem. See screen shot
Attachments
PCNet-III.jpg
PCNet-III.jpg (23.08 KiB) Viewed 2758 times
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Re: Random host reboots.

Postby dihaase » 19. Aug 2010, 19:02

I have switched my connection to "Bridged" and am now using the PCnet-Fast III driver, where previously I was using the Intel 1000 network driver exposed to the guest. This seems to have made things better, in that the random reboots happen much less frequent, but they still occur.

When I use the PCNet-Fast III driver on the guest and run in NAT mode, I have not experienced a random reboot. I have run for 2 weeks with no reboots, sometimes leaving the PC on overnight performing network activity to stress this area.

Thus, it seems to me that there may be some collisions or something happening in the "Bridged" mode that is causing this. My network hardware on the host is a "Broadcom NetXtreme Gigabit Ethernet" controller in my Dell Precision M6500 laptop. There may be some conflict with this driver?
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Re: Random host reboots.

Postby tehtide » 20. Sep 2010, 22:01

I'm having a similar issue as well. Except I'm on virtualbox 3.2.8 r64453. At different times my Windows 7 host will reboot w/o a blue screen or any error while running VirtualBox.

I've changed the NIC's and that hasn't improved anything.

Where can I start looking to try and figure out the issue? Or is this an issue that we need to post a ticket on?
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Re: Random host reboots.

Postby chanon » 30. Sep 2010, 09:07

I can confirm that Windows 7 host randomly reboots itself when running a guest with bridged networking.
Our workaround is to use host only networking - it never rebooted in that case.
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Re: Random host reboots.

Postby mpack » 30. Sep 2010, 12:02

chanon wrote:I can confirm that Windows 7 host randomly reboots itself when running a guest with bridged networking.

Is that any Win7, or is it Win7 64bit as in the OPs case?
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Re: Random host reboots.

Postby v_user » 16. Oct 2010, 13:42

Are there any news on this? I am experiencing the exact same problem.

Virtualbox 3.2.10 PUEL
Host: Win7 64bit
Guest: Debian 5.0 64bit

I have tried various networking configurations, but to no avail. (Host only is not an option, as the VM needs access to the outside world)

Edit: here is a link to a few more reports of the same problem:
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=34778
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