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RocketRaid 1640 Weird Behavior with my RAID 5

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February 27, 2008 7:37:36 PM

Hi All,

I am seeing some weirdness with my RAID array that I cannot explain, and I'm hoping someone in this forum can clear up my confusion.

I have a Windows XP Pro machine that has a HighPoint RocketRaid 1640 in it. A few years ago, I set it up with a RAID 5 array consisting of four 400GB drives. Time went by, and all was well.

A few weeks ago, the machine started making a loud buzzing noise, that sounded like a hard drive was failing, so I shut it down. I assumed that one of my four drives had failed, and that I would need to replace that drive. I booted the machine up again, expecting HighPoint's BIOS utility to tell me which drive had gone bad.

So, as the machine is booting, the first thing that comes up in the BIOS Utility is a message indicating that the array has failed. It shows "Remained Drives" on channel 1, 3, and 4, and gives me the choice to either destroy the array (no thank you!) or to hide it and continue booting. (The RAID array is purely storage, the OS lives on another drive).

I select the option to hide the array and continue booting, but then an identical error screen pops up, this one showing only a single "Remained Drive" on channel 2. It gives me the same options, destroy the array, or hide it and continue booting.

At this point I was surprised and confused, so I spent some time browsing through the BIOS utility -- If I go to the list of my arrays, it shows two entries, both with the same identifier, and both with a capacity of 1200 GB. If I go to the list of devices, it shows all four hard drives -- but for some reason the "BOOT" column is not marked for drive number 2, while it is marked for the 1, 3, and 4.

The most confusing thing is that if I choose "Hide this array and continue booting" for both of the error screens that come up, and allow the machine to boot into windows, the logical volume that is my RAID 5 array is still visible, and still seems to work. Since this is RAID 5, I would have expected that a problem with any drive would render it useless until such time as I can replace that drive and rebuild.

So. . . what the heck is going on, and what should I do? Why does the RocketRaid now think it has 2 failed arrays, but act like it still has one working one? Should I replace drive number 2 and rebuild the array? Should I toggle that drive's boot flag and see if the problem goes away?

I have held off on doing anything, because I don't want to lose my data, and this weird behavior makes me hesitant to try anything. I'd deeply appreciate any insight that anyone may be able to provide.

Thanks in Advance,
Eric
February 28, 2008 9:43:15 PM

First things first... backup any data that you can now, if you have some cash spring for a couple of 500gb drives and copy your data off.

The whole point of a raid 5 array is to be redundant, if you one drive fails the array continues to function... so the fact that the partition is still available is a good thing , as it sounds like the redundancy is working.

After backing up any data i would try replacing the 2nd drive with a new 400gb and see if you can rebuild the array in the BIOS
Anonymous
a b G Storage
April 24, 2010 12:08:27 PM

Hi Eric

I have a similar issue that just appeared today - I had 6 disks in a volume, that now reports as critical due to 1 drive missing and an identical looking volume that is disabled due to having only 1 drive present and 5 missing. It looks as if one of the drives has become orphaned or lost its volume id.

Did you resolve the issue by replacing the drive as suggested or were you able to recover from it by adding it back to the array somehow? Any advice appreciated...

This sounds like a firmware bug to be honest - I couldn't find a KB article about it though, so would be interested to hear the official word from HighPoint.

Thanks
Derek.
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a c 127 G Storage
April 24, 2010 2:38:14 PM

If one of your drives have a problem, the controller will actively disconnect that drive from the array; that will cause an array split which you just encountered. That is common on Windows, and you should focus on a backup to keep your data safe; RAID alone is not good enough, especially on Windows.

Also, please create your own thread next time. I just wasted reading the OP story; while it is two years old and no longer applicable.
Anonymous
a b G Storage
August 26, 2010 8:07:39 PM

Hi to all,

I had yesterday exactly the same problem !!!

RocketRaid 1640 with 4 Maxtor SATA1 160GB (480gb total amount)
Yesterday morning the controlled started the buzz, a guy shutdown the server and restarting it we have exactly the same situation: disk 3 in an array (with windows destroy, continue or shutdown), making continue another time the same request for disk 1,2,4.

At this point the suspect that it is a time bug into controller is strong !!!

I replaced the Disk3 with a new one and rebooting, it added the "rebuild" option.

It toke 2 days to rebuild it but a t the end the RAID5 seems completed scratched (running the windows server installation it is showing a not partitioned disk).

did Anyone find a solution?

tk to all

Roby
Anonymous
a b G Storage
September 14, 2010 12:02:52 AM

Quote:
Hi to all,

I have the exact same problem and if i replace the drive missing the boot data it tries to rebuild but gives an error at 50%. I need a solution if anyone gets one.




I had yesterday exactly the same problem !!!

RocketRaid 1640 with 4 Maxtor SATA1 160GB (480gb total amount)
Yesterday morning the controlled started the buzz, a guy shutdown the server and restarting it we have exactly the same situation: disk 3 in an array (with windows destroy, continue or shutdown), making continue another time the same request for disk 1,2,4.

At this point the suspect that it is a time bug into controller is strong !!!

I replaced the Disk3 with a new one and rebooting, it added the "rebuild" option.

It toke 2 days to rebuild it but a t the end the RAID5 seems completed scratched (running the windows server installation it is showing a not partitioned disk).

did Anyone find a solution?

tk to all

Roby

!