Common Lab Troubleshooting Steps

Typically the lab devices behave as expected when the lab is started. However issues can arise that need some additional troubleshooting. Before submitting a help ticket, we would request that all Instructors (and students) walk through some basic troubleshooting steps.

Also, there may be some known (bad) behaviors, lab errata or idiosyncrasies in certain labs that Instructors should be familiar with. Much of this information is found in the course Instructor Notes and Errata located on our Content Distribution Site which all Instructors should have access to. 

Here are some common troubleshooting steps to try:

  • Graceful Reboot - Sometimes this is all it takes to get a flaky lab device to behave. Easily handled by a student or an Instructor through the command line or using CloudShell's command tools
  • Power-cycle - A bit more drastic than a graceful reboot, but sometimes effective. This can typically only be done by the Instructor through CLI access to the rack Power Device or through the CloudShell's command tools.
  • Load Known-Good Configs - At the start of each lab, our automation tools load device specific configuration files on each device (typically located in the /var/home/lab/<course> directory). Have the students either load the appropriate configs for their lab part or at the very least compare their config to the known good configs to see what may be different. 
  • Reset an Individual Device - this will completely reset the student hardware device to the day 1 state (and wipe out any work the student has done). See our Help Center article about it here. 
  • Revert to Snapshot - A VM specific command and one that can be helpful if a student VM has been mis-configured or misbehaving. See our article on resetting VMs here
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