PfSense SG-2220 crashing once a day - looking f. error cause and potential fixes



  • Hello Community,

    we're recently facing unexplainable crashes or system hangs on our pfSense SG-2220 appliance. We have installed the SG-2220 - purchased at pfSense Onlineshop - as a replacement for our previously connected malfunctioning appliance similar to the SG-2220, but manufactured by a company called NetGate. We're a small Germany-based branch office of a US-based company and use the pfSense for internet access and corporate VPN.

    We used the old NetGate pfSense appliance for about two years without any issues, but the device started crashing roughly a month ago. It crashes every night and each morning we had to reboot it to restore the network connectivity, sometimes taking up to 30min. to reconnect. We already checked with our ISP, and they indicate the line looks good from their POV. We're using an asynchronous ADSL connection via external DSL modem with a pseudo-fixed IP4 address for internet access. (Calling it pseudo-fixed, since German ISP's reconnect the DSL line each night at 3 AM but always assign the same IP4 address). Since this reconnect  is the only thing I know of that's happening every night and the system crash also happens every night, there might be a relation between those.

    That was the reason for our IT department to purchase and send us the SG-2220, which we installed last Friday, in the hopes to eradicate the system hang issues. But the problem is persisting, also with the new pfSense box. It crashed over the weekend and I had to reboot it again. As I have no access to the admin panel, I need to rely on the info I get from our corporate IT in the US, and they stated the device logs do not indicate a proper reason on why the system hangs. The pfSense firmware is already updated to most recent available stable version and the configuration (done by corp. IT dept) is basically the same that worked flawlessly during the last 2 yrs of system uptime.

    Here's how the status LEDs looked like this morning while the device was in crashed system state:

    LED Type                  LED Status
    –-------------------------------------------------------
    Front Status LED      -  red, permanently on
    3 Internal Status LEDs -  All 3 green, permanently on.
    LAN/WAN port LEDs      -  Link & Activity dark/off on both ports.

    That's all the information I have at hand, maybe someone can give any indication and point my error investigations in some direction, on what might be the cause of the malfunction.

    Thanks in advance,
    -Markus