Java freezing chrome and crashing

imageProblem:  When accessing a website that requires the use of a Java Applet, Chrome freezes and eventually will crash.  If I upgrade to Version 7x, the program works just fine.  The problem in this solution is that the computer needs to use Java 6 for a program that will only work with that version of Java and will not function at all with the latest version.  The good news is that this new website is supposed to work with Java 6.  So why is it freezing?

Solution:   After trying to uninstall Java 6 and reinstalling (which didn’t work), I tried installing the latest version of Java, uninstalling it and then installing Java 6.  That worked!  Why?  I haven’t a clue.  Perhaps the Java 7 install reset some settings that didn’t happen in my Java 6 reinstall try.   Ahh!  The joys of Java.

 

Emails are delayed or fail from bigfish.com

PROBLEM:  When a user tries to send my organization an email, they will get an error message stating the the email has been delayed.  The exact message: “This message hasn’t been delivered yet. Delivery will continue to be attempted.”

After a few days, the user would get an error that the message has failed stating that the “Delivery has failed to these recipients or groups”

The frustrating part of this issue is that it doesn’t happen consistently.  The emails will successfully be delivered for days or even weeks and then the errors will rear their ugly heads once again.

Observations and what I have done to troubleshoot the issue:

  1. In all of the failed emails, the generating server was from the domain bigfish.com.  After a couple of google searches, I found out that this is part of the Office365 services.  In particular, the Forefront portion of the service.
  2. I whitelisted the email of the sender in our spam filter to make sure it wasn’t getting blocked on accident.  This did not fix our issue.  (our spam filter is a Mail Foundry appliance).
  3. I removed some outdated blacklist sites on the spam filter to improve SMTP response time.  Did not fix
  4. I put our spam filter in a DMZ to rule out our firewall.  Did not fix
  5. Per a suggestion from a fellow admin, I checked our DNS and made sure that our SPF record was setup setup properly.  Did not fix
  6. Worked with Mail Foundry tech support and confirmed with them that the email wasn’t even getting to the appliance, let alone rejecting the message.
  7. Changed ISPs.  We switched out ISP’s not because of this issue but just to change service and this didn’t fix the issue as well.

I have tried everything that I could think of so now I turn to anyone who might stumble on this post.  Hopefully, someone might be able to give me a suggest that I haven’t thought of yet.  So if you have a suggestion, please leave a comment.

 

Exchange server going offline and OWA as well

Problem:  Exchange 2003 Server will periodically go offline.   OWA will not work and cannot access via Outlook as well.  In the past, a reboot or restarting the Exchange services would fix the issue but this problem was different than the past.

 Solution:  Realized that the hard drive was running low on space.   Freed up some hard drive space by deleting temp files and old log files.  Just like  in a previous post, I needed to go back to the basics and check the hard drive space.

 

Windows 7 laptop not responsive and sluggish

Problem: Had a clients laptop that started to run very sluggishly.   All of the symptoms were pointing to a virus or malware taking up the CPU and memory resources.   Went to uninstall any programs that weren’t supposed to be there and I did find quite a few that needed uninstalling.  (for more information see a post post about this malware issue).   After uninstalling the offending programs and freeing up some memory using msconfig, the problem still wasn’t going away.  It looked as if there computer was waiting on a process that was frozen.   I told me client to be ready for a hardware failure because the last time I saw something like this, the hard drive failed a few months later.

Solution:  Sometimes we have to go back to the basics.   I decided to run a chkdsk on the C: drive and after four hours and many orphaned files restored, the computer’s performance was back to normal.  Have you ever had a problem were you checked everything except the basic first steps?  Sometimes our experience can inhibit us from seeing the real problem because we were looking for a more complicated solution…