Preclear plugin


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Hi guys, this is a simple plugin that allows users to clear their disks before add them to the array.   The main characteristics of this plugin are: Modularity: can be used standalon

I think Thanks should be directed at all those members that have been dealing with the mess the last few months. @dlandon and @Squid have been working behind the scenes to try and clean up, and o

Dontlookoverthere over on the unRAID subreddit figured out how to get the plugin running again with a simple edit to the plg:   https://www.reddit.com/r/unRAID/comments/7wjpus/preclear_worki

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Preclear 6.4.1 confirmations  -   using  a 2 TB Seagate Ironwolf as a  guinea  pig

 

Patched Plugin works fine!

Manually installing the forked plugin @sureguy shared works great – just note  that the status on Main\UD takes a bit to update - jumping over to plugins/preclear loads the preclear status immediately.

https://raw.githubusercontent.com/dohlin/unRAID-plugins/master/plugins/preclear.disk.plg

 

@mods -  any chance this forked plugin link can be  noted on the first/top post?

 

Patched Script works fine!

Unzipping JoeL.s script  into the root  flash folder

https://lime-technology.com/forums/topic/2732-preclear_disksh-a-new-utility-to-burn-in-and-pre-clear-disks-for-quick-add/

using  terminal to patch it  via

cd /boot

sed -i -e "s/print \$9 /print \$8 /" -e "s/sfdisk -R /blockdev --rereadpt /" preclear_disk.sh

 works just fine

 

side note

cd /boot

preclear_disk.sh –l 

returns all  of the disks available to preclear after a single string print error (no big deal)

 

Screen  (or Screen  -r)

cd /boot

preclear_disk.sh -A /dev/sdX 

runs  the preclear script to completion and the 3 output reports  in the flash/preclear  reports folder look great

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Just now, luisv said:

Awesome!  I for one appreciate everyone's time and efforts!  Maybe I'm oversimplifying things, but what are the next steps to get the updated plugin within CA.

 

My understanding is that this is unlikely to happen since there is no indication that any one group/person will provide continued support for the plugin.

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29 minutes ago, luisv said:

but what are the next steps to get the updated plugin within CA.

 

28 minutes ago, wreave said:

My understanding is that this is unlikely to happen since there is no indication that any one group/person will provide continued support for the plugin.

My current opinion:

 

Plugins due to their nature are held to a slightly higher standard than other types of applications.  Consequently, until this plugin is either fixed by the author, or a fork of it happens by someone else willing to take over then CA will not include Preclear on v6.4.1+  (It is still available in CA for unRaid <=6.4.0)

 

I do not know how benign the effect of installing the incorrect version of tmux is, and no matter how you term it, this patched .plg file is a hack on a non-functioning and incompatible plugin. 

 

 

Previously, the same thing happened to the Server Layout plugin (it was incompatible, and @Squidposted a patch to let it work, but it was never let it back into CA until the author fixed the problem).  Currently the same thing is also happening with the OpenVM tools plugin.

 

Alternatives do exist:  Namely not bothering with preclear at all (I'm of the opinion that its not necessary, and is a legacy thing), or utilizing the scripts here.

 

 

Perhaps the situation with CA and the patched .plg will change in the future, but for the time being, it is going to remain outside of the CA installation channels until its either fixed or someone can convince me / order me to change my mind.

Edited by pluginCop
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28 minutes ago, pluginCop said:

Alternatives do exist:  Namely not bothering with preclear at all (I'm of the opinion that its not necessary, and is a legacy thing), or utilizing the scripts here.

1

 

What is your reasoning behind this? I haven't added a drive to unRAID that wasn't precleared in a long time. Ignoring the benefit of putting extra stress on the drive to detect early failures does unRAID handle non-precleared drives better with more recent versions?

 

Before if I didn't preclear a drive my whole array would be offline until the new drive was processed, which could take a long time for larger drives.

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6 minutes ago, wreave said:

does unRAID handle non-precleared drives better with more recent versions

Yes

 

6 minutes ago, wreave said:

Before if I didn't preclear a drive my whole array would be offline until the new drive was processed, which could take a long time for larger drives.

This is no longer true. UnRAID will clear new drives in the background with the array running.

 

 

The point is that users now have a choice of which tools they want to use for drive testing, so the plugin isn’t critical to the operation of the server.

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8 minutes ago, wreave said:

Before if I didn't preclear a drive my whole array would be offline until the new drive was processed, which could take a long time for larger drives.

No, this hasn't been the case for sometime. unRAID will clear a disk without taking the array offline.

 

Note that unRAID only requires a clear disk when adding to a new slot in an array with valid parity. A clear disk (all zeros) has no effect on parity. A clear disk is not required for any other situation.

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I did uninstall Preclear plugin, when I was upgrading from 6.3.5 to 6.4.0, as per instructions. I really liked this plugin and always used it on the new drives. Now I just received my 2 new drives and am really missing this plugin.

 

Can I actually re-install and use this plugin on 6.4.0? From reading the last pages of this thread, I get a feeling, that it seems to work on 6.4.0, and only has problems on 6.4.1. I haven't upgraded to 6.4.1 yet. So, I just want to double check, if it's OK to re-install this plugin and use it on 6.4.0?

 

I have zero Linux experience/knowledge (except unraid), so I am not even considering using scripts in terminal, etc. For the time being - it's the plugin or nothing for me, hence I'm asking here.

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1 hour ago, shEiD said:

I did uninstall Preclear plugin, when I was upgrading from 6.3.5 to 6.4.0, as per instructions. I really liked this plugin and always used it on the new drives. Now I just received my 2 new drives and am really missing this plugin.

 

Can I actually re-install and use this plugin on 6.4.0? From reading the last pages of this thread, I get a feeling, that it seems to work on 6.4.0, and only has problems on 6.4.1. I haven't upgraded to 6.4.1 yet. So, I just want to double check, if it's OK to re-install this plugin and use it on 6.4.0?

 

I have zero Linux experience/knowledge (except unraid), so I am not even considering using scripts in terminal, etc. For the time being - it's the plugin or nothing for me, hence I'm asking here.

Yes. You can install it and it will probably work. I never had any problems with it on 6.4.0, but there were others that did, so no guarantees.

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Would anybody be able to tell me what the "Erase All the Disk" operation exactly does? I could not find conclusive documentation on that. Is it essentially zeroing the entire drive without writing the preclear signature on it? Or does it fill the disk with random bites?

 

Many thanks!

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1 hour ago, Seige said:

Would anybody be able to tell me what the "Erase All the Disk" operation exactly does?

 

What I suspects it does to over-write all of the information on the disk so that you could sell or scrap it without any worries about the security of your data that was stored on it.    

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On 11/14/2017 at 12:38 PM, gfjardim said:

 

Erase will fill the entire disk with randomly generated data; Erase and Clear will do the erase operation, then fill it with zeroes and write the unRAID clear signature. Clear will fill the disk with zeroes then write the unRAID clear signature.

 

 

Looks like Erase is basically a secure delete process.

Edited by wgstarks
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  • 2 weeks later...

So are we saying pre-clear is no longer required for stress testing a drive or is there another tool for this? I am looking to add a new 3TB drive to my protected array and ideally would like to test before hand. 

 

Thanks

 

Edited by witalit
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16 minutes ago, witalit said:

So are we saying pre-clear is no longer required for stress testing a drive or is there another tool for this? I am looking to add a new 3TB drive to my protected array and ideally would like to test before hand. 

 

Thanks

 

I think it would be better to say that the preclear plugin is no longer required to clear drives for use in your array. You may still want to use it for stress testing drives, but there are other choices available that may be better supported.

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1 minute ago, wgstarks said:

I think it would be better to say that the preclear plugin is no longer required to clear drives for use in your array. You may still want to use it for stress testing drives, but there are other choices available that may be better supported.

 

What other tools can someone recommend? I mean for me I am on 6.4 anyways so plugin still works. I understand what you mean though as unRAID now can pre-clear disk for me but for stress test it is not a mandatory plugin.

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2 minutes ago, witalit said:

 

What other tools can someone recommend? I mean for me I am on 6.4 anyways so plugin still works. I understand what you mean though as unRAID now can pre-clear disk for me but for stress test it is not a mandatory plugin.

There is a patched version that also works on current unRAID versions. Scroll up a little. AFAIK there aren’t any devs currently supporting the plugin.

 

As far as tools, many manufacturers are providing those. It would depend on what brand of drives you are installing.

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