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PowerChute problems, again


PowerChute problems, again

This was originally posted on APC forums on 12/1/2012


Having been unable to use PowerChute Business Edition for a while due to compatibility problems with Server 2008 I've recently returned to it and find myself just as utterly perplexed with it as I was before. I'm running the latest available version of PowerChute on Server 2k8 R2, fully updated, and it's controlling a Smart-UPS 1500 RM running firmware 667.19.I.

I have all manner of problems with this software but let's just start with events a little earlier today.

At 10.56 I get an e-mail from PowerChute saying that power has failed.
At 11.07 I get an e-mail saying 'Shutdown process started...'
At 11.07 I also get an e-mail saying 'Low Runtime Remaining...'
At 11.23. 11.24 and 11.27 I get e-mails saying 'Insufficient Runtime Remaining...'

Looking at the System logs on the server:
At 11.08 I get an ID 1074 'PowerChute has initiated a shutdown...'
At 11.09 I get an ID 13 'The operating system is shutting down...'
At 11.09 I get an ID 109 ' The kernel poser manager has initiated a shutdown transition'
At 11.54 I get an ID 12 'The operating system started...'

On the face of it then it would seem that the power failed at 10.56 (it did) and that 12 minutes later a shutdown of the server was initiated. According to the server's logs this resulted in a (graceful) shutdown about a minute later.

There's very little about all of this that I understand. Here are my problems:

1) Why was a shutdown initiated 12 minutes after power failure when I had configured the shutdown sequence such that PowerChute should wait for 40 minutes before doing this?

2) How can the OS be shutting down at 11.09 and PowerChute, which is running on this OS, is e-mailing me as late as 11.27?

3) What do the warnings 'low runtime remaining' and 'insufficient runtime remaining' mean exactly?

A few days ago I ran a calibration of this UPS (the UPS and battery are 2 years old now) after which PowerChute reported that it could run the load being applied to it for 82 minutes on battery. The Shutdown Sequence configuration appeared unable to take this on board since the graph only went up to 1 hour. I didn't understand why this should be but just soldiered on, setting, as I say, a delay of 40 minutes before OS shutdown began.

Since then the load on the UPS has not changed. There was and still is just one server and one switch running off it.

But I now find that the shutdown sequence settings have mysteriously changed, down to 28 minutes on battery before starting shutdown. No-one else has logged onto the server or PowerChute so it would appear to have changed this by itself. I also find that the 'runtime remaining' as reported by PowerChute is down from 82 minutes to 48 minutes.

I'd be most grateful if anyone could help me with any of this, or perhaps just recommend an alternative UPS manufacturer with control software that works.

Thanks, Ian.