I enjoy a good apple, and Gala apples are the ones I get most of the time, but it is amazing how many choices there are these days. I remember when your choice was only between red delicious and golden delicious. But as much as I enjoy a good apple, I'm never sure what to do with the remaining core. Sometimes, I compost them, but other times, I put them outside for the local animals and insects to enjoy. As appetizing as an apple may be, the remaining core is not an especially pretty sight.
Even worse is a core file on your operating system! This means something very bad happened in the code, and the process stopped running.
In regards to the System p agents, the bad news is that there have been some core dump problems over the years. The good news is we seem to have corrected them all. We have gone quite a while without any new core problems, so make sure you are running with the latest interim fixes. The links are in the Latest Interim Fixes section of the Tivoli Monitoring System p Troubleshooting Wiki.
By the way, the kxxagent process rarely cores, and if the associated data provider does core, the kxxagent will attempt to restart the data provider, up to seven times. So, if you are not running the latest interim fix, you might have experienced core dumps and not known it.
Here is some general information about AIX core dumps and the resulting core files.
Core dumps are recorded in the AIX errpt. Run "errpt -a | more" to see if any process on the system has cored.
The errpt -a command will list the stack trace for the core. You can use the stack trace strings and compare to the stack traces listed in the interim fix readme to see if the core dump is a known problem or search the web using those strings.
Use the syscorepath command to specify a single system-wide directory where all core files of any processes will be dumped. Create a filesystem specifically for cores to prevent important filesystems from filling up due to large core files.
The ulimit -a command lists the core dump size. Use ulimit -c to set the core size to unlimited to allow the whole core dump to be captured.
To send a core dump file to IBM Support, use the snapcore command.
Hope you never need this information, but here it is in case you do!