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WHS v1 Dead hard drive(s)


BigSpenderNOT
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Hi guys,

 

Ugh. Just noticed that my connector icon was grey, so I started doing some troubleshooting. Rebooted the server and everything seemed to be back to normal... but then... the dreaded RED connector icon, stating a hard drive was gone (showing the "DE" drive?). Tried to connect through the console and no love, so I hauled my extra monitor, keyboard and mouse into the server closet and plugged them in (I've got a home build, so the monitor connection is easy). Looked at disk manager and it sees all my drives (14) and it says everyone of them is healthy. I did another reboot of the system, went back and looked at the connector icon on my main PC and this time it was green, then turned to yellow (telling me to check a disk), then to red (telling me a different disk was dead/missing, this one was referred to as "primary disk"). So...

 

I haven't had to do much troubleshooting of hard drives (especially so many in one machine), so what do you recommend I do? Start running some kind of check disk (if so, what?) one by one on each of the hard drives until I find one with errors? Something else? I just need a few tips/tricks and help with a troubleshooting starting point. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!

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Well, ran chkdsk on the D: drive on WHS and it found some bad sectors on my OS drive. I yanked the sucker out, checked to see if it was still under warranty (SCORE! It was), packaged it up and sent it out. Had an old laptop drive (250 GB) laying around, so I'm thinking of using that to rebuild the OS (instead of waiting for the RMA). Also decided to upgrade my case (bigger and cooler) and map out where my drives were exactly. Hopefully, reinstalling the OS tonight after putting everything back together... cross your fingers for me that the reinstall option is there and that it finds my SATA card drivers easily! I've got about 19TB worth of entirely duplicated data across 13 drives... I can't afford any major hiccups with the reinstall. :)

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OK, I know I'm talking to myself at the moment, but I think I really need some help this time. I reinstalled WHS on the 250GB drive. The install program initially saw only 7 of my 13 drives, but then I loaded the drivers for my 2 SATA cards (getting an error after one of them about an oemsetup.txt file or something?) and it then could see all 13 drives even with the error during driver install. Everything seemed to run OK from there, but then the first time I logged in, I got a few errors where it asks you to send MS the error report. This worried me but after OKing like 10 of those type of errors (I wish I would have written down what they were for), I installed the NIC drivers, audio drivers, etc without a hitch. Then, I tried to manually do a windows update (through the Start menu) and got a BSOD. Crap! Rebooted and opened the WHS console (I'm doing everything through a monitor hooked directly up to the server)and did Windows Update through there (108 or so updates!). While in the console I looked to see how the drive pool looked and, of course, it's not Kosher. It shows all of the drives as healthy and added to the pool, but all of my shares are empty when I click on them and when I look at the data pie chart, I have 19 TB of "system" data and about 1.3 TB of free space! This allocation seems about right (from my memory before my OS drive took a dump), except for the 19 TB should be seen under the "duplicated data" piece of pie!

 

So, my system is now fully updated through PP3, but my data seems to be unaccessible. I just knew this OS drive replacement wasn't going to go well. Ugh, someone please tell me that everything is going to be alright.

 

Anybody have anything for me to try? :(

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It is not a good practice to do a server recovery and then go through the server with a monitor to do the updates. Some things get out of whack that way. WHS is meant to install headless (without a monitor).

 

You should start by removing the WHS connector software on your PC because that is the Power Pack 3 version and when you do a server recovery, it looks for PP1.

 

Start a Server Recovery. Once that's rebooted once or twice, Run the connector software from the PC Software CD, it should find the server. If not, try your browser at http://servername:55000 and the connector software should popup. You then configure server name and password. It should then get some Windows Updates and reboot. Once you go into the Console again, you should have the standard Console. Add the Users and their permissions. Now you should have access to those shares. Continue to do the Windows Updates, here you can do the updates directly at the server with your monitor. Continue to check for Windows Updates until you have them all including PP3. You should get a warning at the PC saying the connector needs to be updated, that should run automagicaly.

 

Good Luck, let us know how it goes.

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Thanks Diehard, I think it's this issue I have found (scouring the nets) with needing to install the drivers for your SATA card(s) twice. Once during normal GUI based install (at screen where you are supposed to make sure all of your drives are seen) and then AGAIN during the blue screen install process ("Hit F6 to install drivers..."). Unfortunately, I do not have any spare floppy drives any longer, nor any floppy disks! How insane that I would need a floppy drive to install anything in regards to a 2003 based OS. Jeez. Well, I'm going to just buy one more USB dual SATA dock and connect 4 drives to the MOBO SATA ports (which are seen fine without any drivers needing to be loaded) and 9 drives via USB ports. Ugh, how asinine. I'll report back if that does (or doesn't) work. God, I hope I never need to replace the OS drive again. F***!! :angry:

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If I remember correctly, this topic was covered during the last podcast. If you have a 64 bit client you will also need the 32 bit drivers to reconnect back to the server. Someone mentioned that one of the WHS MVP's form another site had created a recovery CD with most of the popular drivers both x86 and x64.

 

Maybe this will help.

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If I remember correctly, this topic was covered during the last podcast. If you have a 64 bit client you will also need the 32 bit drivers to reconnect back to the server. Someone mentioned that one of the WHS MVP's form another site had created a recovery CD with most of the popular drivers both x86 and x64.

That was in reference to doing a client restore, so unfortunately it's not quite that simple in this case.

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I think this may be reason enough to keep a VM running, or at least configured as backup. DE is going away so transferring the data would not be that hard.

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Man, I am truly p*ssed off at this Home Server OS "reinstall". Tried the "hooking up all hard drives through USB docks" reinstall so I could NOT have to deal with the stupid-*ss "dual SATA card driver install" issue and everything looked to work perfectly... until opening up the Home Server Console (after installing the Connector to my main PC per Diehard's suggestion) and when I look at the Drives tab it shows that all of my drives are added to the pool, but instead of the data being "duplicated data" it's all reported as "SYSTEM"... What the F*CK?! Looking at the folder shares, sure enough... everything is reported as empty. This is starting t make me question why I am even using WHS. maybe I just need some type of a raid system with all of my data on it... screw the "server" moniker.

 

Anyways, anybody try the ol' "do a clean install to a new OS drive and add your data drives back in one at a time" WHS reinstall? I'm just wondering how that will work once it starts seeing some duplicated data as I am adding them back (I had like 18 TB of totally duplicated data across 13 drives)... I don't need to start THAT process and run into some snags and actually lose my data (which, at least at this point, seems to still be in tact... even though a server "reinstall" can't seem to put it back in the correct places).

 

This is really sickening me. :wacko:

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Anyways, anybody try the ol' "do a clean install to a new OS drive and add your data drives back in one at a time" WHS reinstall?

Sounds like a mess. Do you see anything, any files/folders, when you browse the actual folder shares? All files reported as located in System? John, or anyone, is this something that an addin might repair? Can't think of the name, but I'm thinking of an addin that is supposed to correct errors in database?? Sorry, I can't remember the specifics but I believe someone here knows what I'm referring to.

 

Anyway, yes. I've done the clean OS install and then added files back onto the server, and it all worked out fine. But in your case, it sounds like this is going to take some time and a lot of monitoring and sorting out as you go. Still, it's something that I would go into with pretty high confidence for success. I don't see you losing any data, assuming your hard drives are in good shape. The only thing I'd make sure of before I started adding files is that the hardware is all detected/squared away. Once I did that and proved that I could successfully add hard drives back into the storage pool I think I'd be set to begin.

Edited by dvn
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