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Last week, Ken Foster showed us how to use psping on for measuring network latency on Windows - Tip of the Week: Measuring Network Latency. On Linux you can use ping with specific options to achieve similar results.

 

For example:

 

     ping -U -q -c 300 -s 1200 134.86.110.210

 

2014-02-28_172028.png

 

The options are as follows:

 

-U display full user-to-user latency, not just network round trip time.

 

-q Print only the first line and the summary

 

-c The number requests to send at one second intervals (300 = 5 minutes worth)

 

-s The number of bytes sent for each ping

 

rtt is ‘round trip time’. The values that follow are the minimum, average, and maximum latency values in milliseconds.

 

 

Please see previous blog posts on latency:

 

Tip of the Week: Troubleshooting Networking on Windows with pathping.

Tip of the Week: Measuring Network Latency

Whether it's defining a path in an environment variable, a .ini file or in an application, typing a long path can be frustrating and is prone to typos that can cause problems for you to troubleshoot. Here is an easy of getting an accurate path to a folder into your paste buffer.

 

When you navigate with Windows Explorer to the folder for which you need the path, click in the field that shows the hierachy of folder names and it will become a path to that folder that you can copy and paste.

 

2014-01-25_200057.png

We've previously discussed how to get fairly detailed debug information with the MGLS_DEBUG_LOG_DIR variable - Tip of the Week: Check requested license feature with debug. But sometimes a quick confirmation of the license checkout can be nice to see in the transcript. And, if anything fails, an error message will be right there.

 

The FLEXLM_DIAGNOSTICS variable is a simple way to show some debug information. Simply set FLEXLM_DIAGNOSTICS=3 in your environment and you should see something like the following in the shell where you invoked the application:

 

Checkout succeeded: msimhdlsim/9E204CB2CC009FD365DE

        License file: 1717@licserver

        License Server: 1717@licserver

License granted through "msimhdlsim".

 

 

I hope you find this useful. Be sure to share your own tips!

 

Guy

Whether you want to deifferentiate multiple processes of the same name or simply see which options were used to start a process, the Windows 7 Task Manager will let you view the command line. This may help in finding which process is using a file or differentiating sessions. The possiblitie are many.

 

To enable the Command Line column:

 

  1. Open Task Manager
  2. Pull-down View> Select Columns
  3. Scoll down and check Command Line
  4. Click OK

 

Your Task Manager will now have a column that will show you the command line used to start the process.

 

2013-11-15_160453.png

In September, I showed you how to more quickly access your Windows environment variables with a keyboard shortcut. But, it gets better.

 

Here's how you can set up a desktop shortcut to directly access your Windows variables:

 

  1. Right-click on your Desktop and select New> Shortcut
  2. For the location of the item paste in %windir%\System32\rundll32.exe sysdm.cpl,EditEnvironmentVariables and click Next
  3. Rename your shortcut Environment Variables and click Finish

 

Now when you double-click this Desktop shortcut, your Environment Variables window will be opened directly.

We are constantly editing environment variables in customer support and we know many of our customers access them frequently as well. Normally, you have to go through Start> Computer, right-click, select Properties, click Advanced system settings, click Environment Variables. Fortunately, you can cut about half that with a keyboard shortcut.

 

     Windows Key + Pause/Break

 

Yes, it's that key way over on the upper right of your keyboard.

 

Hopefully you find this helpful. Free free to share your tips and tricks for quick access to frequently used windows or utilities.

When starting or troubleshooting a  license server, it's handy to have a way to verify a license checkout  without having to run an application. We have two utilities to help you  do just that.

 

On Linux we use the mgls_ok utility. Most applications have the mgls_ok utility  located within the application tree's bin directory. However, you may  need to set the MGLS_HOME variable to the application tree or the mgls  package within it. For a standalone licensing tree, set MGLS_HOME to the  top level folder (e.g.: mgls_v9-7_2-3-0.ixl). You'll also need to copy  the mgc.pkginfo file to the lib directory. You can download that here. Make sure your MGLS_LICENSE_FILE variable is set to your license file or license server (port@host).

 

Once  you have the the MGLS_HOME and MGLS_LICENSE_FILE variables set and the  mgc.pkginfo file copied, the command to check out a license feature is  simple:

 

     $ $MGLS_HOME/bin/mgls_ok msimhdlsim

     Checking availability of "msimhdlsim".

     License granted through "msimhdlsim".

 

 

On Windows,  we use the pcls_ok utility which provides a GUI. With the licensing  software installed, you can access the pcls_ok utility from the Start  Menu> All Programs> Mentor Graphics Licensing> pcls_ok. You can  also navigate to C:\MentorGraphics\Licensing or possibly find pcls_ok  in your applications start menu or tree. Here's an example of the  pcls_ok interface:

 

2013-03-02_134957.png

 

The  nice thing about the pcls_ok interface is it shows you the value of  MGLS_LICENSE_FILE, which makes it easy to verify and know where you're  attempting to get licenses from.

 

To  check out a feature, just pick one from your license file and type or  paste it into the Feature: field. Then, click Apply. A successful  checkout will look like this:

 

2013-03-02_135400.png

 

If the checkout fails, A dialog will appear with an error message.

Troubleshooting a variety of networking problems typically involves frequent use of the ping command, which can quickly tell you whether or not there is a route between hosts. But what if ping returns with zero packet loss yet you still have problems? Those TCP/IP packets often have to travel through routers or switches and those points can create problems. Fortunately, there's a very handy utility on Windows called pathping that will trace the route between hosts and give you some data on performance or potential bottlenecks. This can be very helpful in diagnosing network problems, especially those related to latency.

 

Here's an example of using pathping:

 

 

C:\Users\guyw>pathping silver

 

Tracing route to sliver.company.com[134.47.135.106]

over a maximum of 30 hops:

  0  DT2.company.com[134.47.52.46]

  1  lanrx.company.com[134.47.53.254]

  2  lan-te1-3.company.com[134.47.104.165]

  3  rd-rg3.company.com[134.47.105.222]

  4  sliver.company.com[134.47.135.106]

 

Computing statistics for 100 seconds...

            Source to Here   This Node/Link

Hop  RTT    Lost/Sent = Pct  Lost/Sent = Pct  Address

  0                                           DT2.company.com[134.47.52.46]

                                0/ 100 =  0%   |

  1    1ms     0/ 100 =  0%     0/ 100 =  0%  lanrx.company.com[134.47.53.254]

                                0/ 100 =  0%   |

  2    9ms     0/ 100 =  0%     0/ 100 =  0%  lan-te1-3.company.com[134.47.104.165]

                                0/ 100 =  0%   |

  3   16ms     0/ 100 =  0%     0/ 100 =  0%  rd-rg3.company.com[134.47.105.222]

                                0/ 100 =  0%   |

  4    1ms     0/ 100 =  0%     0/ 100 =  0%  sliver.company.com[134.47.135.106]

 

Trace complete.

On Windows you have the option to set an environment variable as a User variable or a System variable. A User variable takes precedence when the variable is set both as a User and System variable. Setting a System variable requires admin rights and will be available to anyone who logs into the system. User variables are only available to the user but are generally fine for desktop applications.

 

However, some applications either run as a service or have a component that runs as a service. In cases where the service requires a license (e.g.: Capital Manager), it is imperative that MGLS_LICENSE_FILE be set as a System variable so the service (running under the System user account) can obtain a license.

 

If you get errors when starting an application service, ensure that ALL required variables are set as System variables.

Mentor Standard Licensing v2013_2 is now available for download on SupportNet. This release contains a number of important benefits and key changes detailed below.

 

 

Reasons to update your license server:

 

  • Update from FlexNet v11.10.0.3 to v11.11.1.1. As applications that build with Mentor Standard Licensing (MSL) v2013_2 ship, they will require license servers running 11.11.1.1 or newer. It's advisable to update your license servers in advance of these product releases. You do not need to update anything if you are using Mobile Compute (uncounted) licenses.
  • Support added for AIX v6.1, Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012. Note: This applies to the licensing software only. For support information regarding specific product releases, please refer to the System Requirements on SupportNet. 
  • Support added for Consistent Network Device Naming (em0, em1, p1s3, etc...) on Linux
  • Stability improvements
  • Numerous defect fixes

 

 

 

 

Key Changes:

 

  • Red Hat EL 4 and SuSe SLES 9 are no longer supported. MSL v2013_2 will not run on these platforms.
  • Support for some hardware keys (dongles) has been  discontinued. If you are using a hardware key as your  license server's hostid, you may need to request a replacement key.  Please refer to http://supportnet.mentor.com/news/Discontinued-Legacy-HW-Keys.cfm for more information. As of MSL v2013_2, only the Aladdin USB FLEXid 9- key is supported. This is the teal-colored USB key.

 

 

Information about downloading MSL v2013_2 can be found in TechNote MG66951.*

 

*Requires SupportNet login.

Is your disk space getting low? Is Windows warning you about disk space on your C: drive? Large files can be written in places your may not expect and then forgotten. The following is a simple procedure to help you quickly locate the large files that are consuming the disk space you need for other things:

 

  1. Open Windows Explorer (Windows key+E)
  2. Select the drive you wish to search
  3. In the Search Computer field in the upper right type size:gigantic
  4. As you type, a drop down list may appear giving you other options like Huge, Large, etc...  2013-05-03_160518.png
  5. Press Enter and the search will begin

 

 

Once the results are displayed you may sort the results or change the View to list details about the files, including the Folder Path which will help you decide what you can safely delete. And when I say safely, I mean you should be sure you know the file is safe to delete. ;-)

 

Feel free to share your feedback or your own tips about finding large files in the comments.

We often see strange problems when the wrong characters are used to separate multiple license servers or license files in either the MGLS_LICENSE_FILE or LM_LICENSE_FILE variable.

 

The FlexNet standard is as follows:

 

 

Multiple independent servers and/or license files - colon ":" on Unix/Linux and semicolon ";" on Windows

 

For ex: MGLS_LICENSE_FILE=1717@server1;1717@server2;C:\MentorGraphics\License_Files\local_license.dat

 

This is a Windows example and the semicolons are used because a colon indicates a drive letter. Use colons on Unix/Linux.

 

 

A set of redundant servers - commas on both Windows and Linux

 

For ex: MGLS_LICENSE_FILE=1717@serverA,1717@serverB,1717@serverC:1717@local_server

 

Notice that the servers in the redundant cluster of serverA/serverB/serverC are separated by commas but the cluster as a whole is separated by a colon from the independent local_server. This would be a Unix/Linux example.

The 10.2 versions of both ModelSim and Questa SIM require license servers running FlexNet v11.10. Our current licensing release, MSL v2013_1 is built with FlexNet v11.10 and can be downloaded here:

 

Why upgrade to FlexNet v11.10? Download the latest licensing software.

 

The v11.10 license daemons can also be found in the ModelSim and Questa SIM application trees.

 

If you're getting an error running 10.2 that you weren't getting in the previous version, check that your license server is running the latest version of our licensing software.

We often get asked which license features are required by our applications and that can sometimes be difficult to answer due to a number of factors. However, we have the capability to output a debug log file for licensing that will show you the requested and granted license features for the application you're running. It's fairly simple to generate this debug file:

 

  1. Set the MGLS_DEBUG_LOG_DIR environment variable to a writeable directory.
  2. Run the application, using functionality that will consume a license.
  3. Exit the application.
  4. Check the specified directory.

 

The license transaction information is written to the end of the log file:

 

###############################################################

# License Transactions

###############################################################

 

Feature Requested: viewdraw, 2012.06

  Feature Granted: viewdraw  Location: 1717@licserv

 

Feature Requested: ices, 2012.06

  Feature Granted: ices  Location: 1717@dustylicserv

 

Feature Requested: dxdatabook, 2012.06

  Feature Granted: dxdatabook  Location: 1717@licserv

 

 

We also have a utility on Windows that you can use to generate a runtime diagnostic report with this information. You can watch a video that demonstrates its use:

 

Generating a Run-time Diagnostic Report with the Mentor License Utility (video)

When starting or troubleshooting a license server, it's handy to have a way to verify a license checkout without having to run an application. We have two utilities to help you do just that.

 

On Linux we use the mgls_ok utility. Most applications have the mgls_ok utility located within the application tree's bin directory. However, you may need to set the MGLS_HOME variable to the application tree or the mgls package within it. For a standalone licensing tree, set MGLS_HOME to the top level folder (e.g.: mgls_v9-7_2-3-0.ixl). You'll also need to copy the mgc.pkginfo file to the lib directory. You can download that here. Make sure your MGLS_LICENSE_FILE variable is set to your license file or license server (port@host).

 

Once you have the the MGLS_HOME and MGLS_LICENSE_FILE variables set and the mgc.pkginfo file copied, the command to check out a license feature is simple:

 

     $ $MGLS_HOME/bin/mgls_ok msimhdlsim

     Checking availability of "msimhdlsim".

     License granted through "msimhdlsim".

 

 

On Windows, we use the pcls_ok utility which provides a GUI. With the licensing software installed, you can access the pcls_ok utility from the Start Menu> All Programs> Mentor Graphics Licensing> pcls_ok. You can also navigate to C:\MentorGraphics\Licensing or possibly find pcls_ok in your applications start menu or tree. Here's an example of the pcls_ok interface:

 

2013-03-02_134957.png

 

The nice thing about the pcls_ok interface is it shows you the value of MGLS_LICENSE_FILE, which makes it easy to verify and know where you're attempting to get licenses from.

 

To check out a feature, just pick one from your license file and type or paste it into the Feature: field. Then, click Apply. A successful checkout will look like this:

 

2013-03-02_135400.png

 

If the checkout fails, A dialog will appear with an error message.