Article ID: 6345, created on May 15, 2009, last review on May 11, 2014

  • Applies to:
  • Plesk 9.2 for Linux/Unix

Symptoms

After upgrading, you may see many authpsa processes, which cause high CPU utilization (high "load average"), and the server may periodically become unresponsive.

For example:

~# top
top - 11:15:38 up 46 min,  2 users,  load average: 71.07, 38.78, 16.87
Tasks: 147 total,  33 running, 114 sleeping,   0 stopped,   0 zombie
Cpu(s): 13.9%us, 85.7%sy,  0.0%ni,  0.0%id,  0.0%wa,  0.2%hi,  0.2%si,  0.0%st
Mem:   2024824k total,  1728172k used,   296652k free,   199328k buffers
Swap:  3919840k total,        0k used,  3919840k free,   771688k cached

 PID USER      PR  NI  VIRT  RES  SHR S %CPU %MEM    TIME+  COMMAND
31251 root      20   0 20428 1588 1248 R  7.3  0.1   0:10.32 authpsa
31241 root      20   0 20420 1596 1252 R  6.6  0.1   0:10.90 authpsa
31259 root      20   0 20420 1596 1252 R  6.6  0.1   0:06.68 authpsa
31263 root      20   0 20416 1592 1248 R  6.6  0.1   0:06.22 authpsa
31267 root      20   0 20404 1596 1252 R  6.6  0.1   0:06.00 authpsa
31269 root      20   0 20392 1596 1252 R  6.6  0.1   0:05.94 authpsa
31274 root      20   0 20404 1596 1252 R  6.6  0.1   0:05.10 authpsa
31276 root      20   0 20388 1600 1256 R  6.6  0.1   0:04.80 authpsa
31279 root      20   0 20400 1596 1252 R  6.6  0.1   0:04.32 authpsa
31281 root      20   0 20384 1596 1252 R  6.6  0.1   0:04.02 authpsa
31283 root      20   0 20420 1600 1256 R  6.6  0.1   0:03.94 authpsa
31285 root      20   0 20376 1596 1252 R  6.6  0.1   0:03.92 authpsa

Cause

In version 9.2.1, the mail authorization policy is changed from the previous version. It is now a memory-consuming process that causes high server loading.

Resolution

The problem will be fixed in a future update of Parallels Plesk Panel that is going to be released after 9.2.2.

As a temporary workaround, it is recommended to disable POP3 before SMTP authorization. You may configure this through Parallels Plesk Panel: Log in to the Plesk Control Panel as the administrator and go to this page: Home -> Mail Server Settings. In the Relay options section, disable POP3 authorization.

If the server is already loaded with a large number of authpsa processes, you may kill them all with the following command:

~# ps ax | grep authpsa | awk '{print $1}' | xargs kill -9

This allows you to decrease server loading and log in to Parallels Plesk Panel for reconfiguration.

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