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nug

Issues swapping to new server hardware

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So I finally had my new server parts arrive yesterday and I put it all together. I took the seven HDDs out of my old server and plugged them into my new one, booted it up and started getting thousands of I/O errors on one or two HDDs.

 

After panicking for a few minutes I powered everything off and put the HDDs back into the old server. Everything booted up fine except for one of the HDDs now being disabled and the data is emulated.

 

I think I know what has happened here as something similar has happened before but I’m curious to get some opinions… My old server has 6 SATA ports so I bought a cheapo (big regret!) PCI SATA expansion card. I only use one of the two ports on this. For the most part this has been fine but one day I was cleaning up cabling and stuff and I put a different HDD into this card and got all of the same I/O errors I was talking about before.

 

My guess is that once a HDD is added to the array using this card and the E-SATA-SATA cable that it uses it must use/talk to the disk differently that normal and when a different HDD is plugged in it doesn’t recognise it in the same way – is this correct? This would explain why after plugging all of the HDDs directly into the eight dedicated SATA ports on the new motherboard – the same kind of thing happened.

 

The HDD that uses this card is just a 1TB drive and I have more than that left in my array so I’m planning on consolidating all of the data back across the remaining drives and removing the 1TB and SATA expansion out of my old server. Make sure that works and then move everything across to the new server.

My last question is with the disabled/emulated drive. This is actually a 4TB drive that I think disabled itself during the many I/O errors. I don’t believe there’s anything wrong with the drive as there are no errors in the SMART logs, etc and it all happened at this same time as this changeover. I had to replace a drive not long ago, which was a really easy procedure but I’m a little hesitant with this. Do I just:

 

Stop the array

Change that drive number to ‘No Drive’

Start the array

Stop the array

Add that drive back in Start the array I assume the drive will then be added back in to the array.

 

The reason I’m concerned about this process is it’s a little different than just replacing a dead drive. I don’t want to shrink the array or anything – have I made sense there? Am I on the right path? Thanks guys!

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Hi, 

I have had a similar experience with high IO errors before. One was using a pci sata expansion card that started going bad and the other has been due to old sata cables. 

Based on what you have said, did you use new sata cables with the new build? 

Not 100% on the process, but from memory once the drive became disabled the only way to restore was to remove it from the array, then readd and rebuild it from parity. 

 

Not sure if others have a better idea. 

 

 

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I used four new SATA cables that came with my new mb and the rest from my old build.  I'm pretty confident that all of my old cables are ok because when I plugged all of the drives back into the old server it was fine.

 

Having said that it could be one of the new cables being DOA but I doubt it.  I'm 99% sure it's due to using a drive on the pci expander and then off it that's causing the issues.  

 

Tonight I'll rebuild the failed 4TB drive, which will take a good 8 hours or so and then I'll consolidate all of the data away from the 1TB drive and the PCI expansion card.  Then remove that drive from the array, throw that PCI card as far as I can and try the remaining drives again in the new server.  

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5 hours ago, nug said:

Stop the array

Change that drive number to ‘No Drive’

Start the array

Stop the array

Add that drive back in Start the array I assume the drive will then be added back in to the array.

That's the correct procedure to re-enable a drive, next time you also might want to grab and post the diagnostics, so e can see what happened.

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