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WHS v1 persistent blue flashing health light - advice please?


juzzle
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Gents,

 

I need some help with my HP MediaSmart 495 (otherwise known as an HP DataVault X510).

 

Short story

  • after reboot, my server would only remain on the network for 5-20 minutes
  • there have been some signs of server wobbliness, but nothing fatal
  • did a server recovery, hoping that would uncorrupt any problem OS components
  • now it starts up only to the blue health light flashing phase, but never stablises

The details

 

For a couple weeks now, my server has been intermittently disappearing from my shares (or "network view"). Sometimes I can forcibly get it back by a combination of "wake server" or RDP, but lately, it barely shows up for 5 - 20 minutes before disappearing for good.

 

On subsequent restarts (hard reboots :unsure:), I notice that it has been taking sometimes as long as 60 minutes to convert that third blue light (health) to a steady light (from flashing). When it finally did get up and running, I checked StableBit Scanner and it reported "some issues" (bad sector warnings) but not critical ones on the system drive (replaced about 6 months ago).

 

All of this wobbliness worried me, so I did a WHS Server Recovery. The recovery completed, but I've not been able to reconnect to the machine - though it does show up on the router.  The WHS Trouble Shooter said something about incompatible client PC software (but that can't be right - it's the same version I've been using all along, 32 bit Win 7).

 

Last night, I rebooted the WHS once again - but this time, the health light blinks indefinitely - it's been 12 hours now - it still wont change to a stable blue light :wacko:. The disk light bars (for all four disks) above do come on and are steady. Neither waking the server or RDPing work (perhaps because I've not had a chance to set up new user credentials since the Server Recovery).

 

Things I've tried so far:

  • Swapped router - my standard router is an HP ProCurve - no change when swapping to another
  • Swapped cables - all Cat 6 or better
  • Removed all other clients on router
  • Disconnected internet

What next?

 

Thank you for making it this far!  What do you think - a network card issue? .. a drive issue? .. something else?   

 

Can you suggest a course of action?

Edited by juzzle
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Uninstall the Connector Software on the PC. Must be a 32 bit Windows OS machine and reinstall the new connector from the server at http://servername:55000

 

When you do a Server Recovery, WHS put back an old version of the Connector Software in the Software/Home Server Connector folder. This will show a mismatch. The Server will not complete the Server Recovery process until it's successfully connected to a new PC. That's when the Health Light is flashing. (Health Light flashes when a process is not complete).

 

You will have to Upgrade the HP MediaSmart Software once the server connects to the PC. And there should be a few more HP Update. Console/Settings/HP MediaSmart

 

Then you will have to install all the Windows Updates. Could take over an hour and a few reboots.

 

Also make sure that the Time Zone, Date, Time and the same on the PC and server.

 

Once all the Windows Updates are installed, then will be a new 64 bit connector software in the Software/Windows home server connector folder.

 

If your remaining PC's Connector Software show up as greyed out, then you will have to come back and tell us( run Discovery.exe on the PC)..

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Along with what diehard said to try, I would look into hardware issues, particularly hard drives. It could be that your OS drive is having issues, despite the fact you replaced it recently. Did you stress test the drive before putting it into production?

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Diehard - thank you .. legend! I will report back with success or otherwise

 

Ikon - how does one "stress test" a WHS v1 drive?  (I mean, it is a Seagate after all :blink: )

Edited by juzzle
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It's not stress testing a WHSv1 drive per se; it's stress testing any drive before it's put into production. I use SpinRite to stress test any drives of 2TB or less (SpinRite doesn't handle drives over 2TB yet). There are other testing programs you can use. I think both WD and Seagate have their own programs you can download and use.

 

BTW, the way you say it's a Seagate after all makes it sound like you think there should be no problem because it's a Seagate. Nothing could further from the truth. All hard drives, no matter who makes them, can be bad right out of the box. There can be many reasons for this, from manufacturing defects to the way the drive was packaged before it was shipped to the store you bought it from or your house if you bought it online.

 

I don't trust any drives out of the box; I test them all before putting them into service.

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Thank you Diebard - some wobbly progress so far:

 

Uninstall the Connector Software on the PC. Must be a 32 bit Windows OS machine and reinstall the new connector from the server at http://servername:55000

 

After deleting the C:\Program Files\Windows Home Server folder, I tried to run the install from the stock CD - it found the server name and but kept indicating "Downloading software from your home server SERVERNAME, 0% complete" - it never progresses past that - it eventually timed out with "The files were not downloaded from your home server"

 

I then tried your "http://SERVERNAME:55000" method, however, despite getting the web page and a prompt to download the connector software, when I click on it - I get this "The device is not connected."

 

I run the Windows Home Server Connector Troubleshooter and I get this "The version of the Connector software does not match the version of Windows Home Server". The link from the troubleshooter tells me to delete the "%ProgramFiles%\Windows Home Server" folder, which of course deletes the toolkit.

 

Rinse and repeat .. still the same result

 

I am getting dizzy :wacko:

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To further complicate matters - without doing anything apart from the above, the server started this time with a solid health light, BUT, only two of the four drives light is on. What on earth is going on?!

 

(BTW, I downloaded the latest connector software from MS, burnt a CD and ran it - no change - still "0% .. the files were not downloaded")

Edited by juzzle
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For posterity, following is an update of the continuing weirdness

  • after the '2 of 4' lights issue above, I decided to invest in a new system drive - after concerns about the AF drives as a system drive, I went with the Seagate ST2000DM001 after reading a post by Drashna which dispelled my concerns
     
  • I downloaded Seatools and ran the "Long Generic" test (in line with Ikon's recommendation, though not $80 spinright) on both the original Seagate 1.5 TB and the new Seagate 2.0 TB. Both were fine
     
  • I did not install the system drive however - instead, I decided to have one more go at getting the Connector to install. This time  I discovered that, whilst I had uninstalled the "Windows Home Server" software from my Windows 7 client, I had not uninstalled "HP Datavault" software. Subsequent to doing so, I could not reinstall the connector, however, I could RDP in to the WHS and run the console from their - it's all a bit confusing at the point, but  essentially, starting the console (on the WHS) invoked some sort of HP MediaSmart update - evidently, my earlier Server Recovery had reverted the Datavault WHS to an older version.
     
  • Upon reattempting a Connector install from the Windows 7 client machine, hallelujiah! it worked - or at least it "downloaded software from [server]"
     
  • Time for a possible "Ah ha!" moment! - once I got the WHS responsive again, everything seemed okay at first, but then I noticed that a lot of files were not opening (warnings range from "not available" to "no permission"). Sensing some form of corruption, I logged into "Server Storage" (through console) and found that my last remaining EARS20 drive was "unhealthy". Running a "Repair" lead to a looping error "An unexpected error has occurred in the WIndows Home Server Storage Manager".
     
  • I installed Stablebit Scanner - it showed errors with the drive also and mentioned "corruption" - considering that duplication was on most folders, I expect I can recover from this by simple removing the old drive (pool) and replacing with the new seagate (in pool, not as system). Running Scanner now - it's just hung the process and the console at about 0.3% progress. I wont bother running Scanner or attempting to Repair again, it's time I ditched this EARS20 anyway.

More later

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When you do a Server Recovery you have to recreate the Users in the Console. However the folders should still exist.

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I can understand not wanting to pay $80 for SpinRite. However, the situation with the EARS20 is exactly where I would use SR, to try to recover the data that's on the drive. After recovery, and assuming it worked well, I would try to copy the data off and/or clone the EARS20 to known good drive.

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