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Have to reformat a 3TB Hitachi drive

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September 6, 2012 4:55:11 PM

I have a 3TB drive that used to read on my Win 7 machine as 3TB, but read as 2.2TB and 802GB on my Debian server.
During an attempt to upgrade the bios on the Debian server so it could ever see a 3TB drive (This was, in the end successful) I used parted to replace the very microsofty partitioning table with a gpt partition table on the drive, but during the exercise, it reset the sector size to 512B and the drive reads now as having 746GB on either machine. I suspect that if the sectors were set back to 4K, the drive would read out with the proper size.

I have found no place where I can access the drive information on my Win 7 laptop bios where I can manually specify the sector size. I have tried to use DISKPART with an elevated permission-set, and there is no place I can see there to do a manual change of the sector size. It is a T420 Lenovo.

The Debian machine is an HP Proliant DL165 G7 and I have not yet accessed its bios to see if it has the capablity. It is more difficult to physically get at the machine to reboot it into a bios edit session, so I would rather use the Win 7 machine if it is possible.
a c 371 G Storage
September 6, 2012 6:09:52 PM

I don't think you can alter the drives physical sectors. I think you are thinking of the allocation unit sizes that can be set during a format.
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a c 288 G Storage
September 7, 2012 7:28:23 AM

It's not a sector size issue. It's a 32-bit LBA limitation.
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September 7, 2012 3:25:38 PM

64-bit cpu and board on both machines
64-bit OS on both Windows and Debian machines
So how would I change the hard drive's 512B sector to 4096B?
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a c 288 G Storage
September 7, 2012 11:42:07 PM

The problem has nothing to do with how many bits your OS or CPU can handle.

The problem is that somewhere along the line there is a 32-bit limit to the maximum LBA that either BIOS or your drivers can support.

I have attempted to explain the problem here:
http://community.wdc.com/t5/Desktop-Portable-Drives/3TB...

In any case, AFAIK Hitachi drives still use 512e emulation for their Advanced Format models. What is the model number of your drive?
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September 25, 2012 5:04:07 PM

Thanks, fzakbar,

The bios on the laptop and the drive both were able to read the whole 3tb before I blew away the partrition table on the debian server which I later discovered needed a new bios flash to make it able to see storage drives bigger than 2.2TB. Bios is not the problem.


The disk is
a hitachi
0F12460MKC5800P13
P/N 0F12460 S/N YNG1WUWA
CAPACITY:3TB MLC:MKC580 FW:580
LBA:5.860.533.168 SECTORS CHS:16383/16/63
MADE IN THAILAND BY Hitachi Global E182115 T
---------------------------------------------------------------
RATED:5v 430mA.12V 400mA SATA 6.0 Gb/s
HDS5C3030ALA630

If it is as you say and I blew away their 512e emulation when I blew away the partition table, how do I fix that. My old PCs had bios funcion that allowed me to manually enter hard-drive specs. Presumably not all bios could read all drive specs from the drives themselves. I think, if I had a way to interact with the drive at a low-enough level, I could specify the details and get back to a drive that showed its size properly. I tried to fake it with virtual bios in a Oracle VirtualBox VM, but this has failed.

Hitachi's support docs do not tell me how to low-level format the drive past putting partitions on an existing partition table.

Wolf1D
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a c 288 G Storage
September 25, 2012 8:26:23 PM

FWIW, the HDS5C3030ALA630 does not appear to be an Advanced Format model, so the issue of 4KB sector sizes is moot.

Hard Disk Drive Specification - Hitachi Ultrastar 5K3000 / Deskstar 5K3000:
http://www.hgst.com/tech/techlib.nsf/techdocs/FFDF1FA94...$file/DS5K3000_US5K3000_OEMSpecRev1.1.pdf

Somewhere along the line there is still a 32-bit LBA limitation. If your BIOS reports a capacity of 3TB for the drive, then the limitation must be in the driver.

Does Disk Management report the remaining space as being unallocated?
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September 28, 2012 11:43:43 PM

I cannot find any place in the bios of a lenovo T420 where it reports the size of the drive at all.
Before I blew away the partition table accidentally, the drive read as 3TB on this same Lenovo T420 but now I cannot get it to see any size over 802GB for the drive, so I cannot see how the storage driver could be the problem.
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September 29, 2012 4:19:46 AM

Delete the partition and reformat as a GPT partition in Win 7.

The fact that you seen more then 746 GIG on both michines at some point should tell you the partiton and format is wrong.

You must have Intel Rapid Storage Technology drivers 10.1 or higher to see all 3TB.
read here
http://www.servethehome.com/fix-746gb-3tb-hard-drive-is...
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a c 288 G Storage
September 29, 2012 8:32:45 AM

@Wolf1D, how are you connecting your drive to each machine? Are you connecting it internally via a SATA port on your desktop's motherboard, or are you connecting it to your laptop via a USB or eSATA or Firewire? Which enclosure, if any, are you using?

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September 29, 2012 6:13:44 PM

I have tried with USB and with esata from the drive toaster.
The T420 bios setup screens will not show me any information about the onboard hard disk either. It gives me a choice of 2 different sata drivers, however I left that choice alone as that has been working and I don't want to accidentally alienate the internal sata drive.

Wolf
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a c 288 G Storage
September 29, 2012 8:04:03 PM

As you say, your Lenovo BIOS supports UEFI, so eSATA should not be a problem.

http://support.lenovo.com/en_US/research/hints-or-tips/... (Drivers)
http://support.lenovo.com/en_US/downloads/detail.page?D... (BIOS)

You still need an appropriate Windows driver, though. As already mentioned by Rainey, you need the latest Intel RST driver to see the full 3TB (Version: 11.2.0.1006):

http://support.lenovo.com/en_US/downloads/detail.page?D...

You need to select AHCI mode for your SATA controller in BIOS. Perhaps this setting changed after your BIOS update.

In USB mode, the external drive is seen as a USB mass storage device and requires a different driver. Some USB enclosures have a 32-bit LBA limitation in their firmware.
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September 29, 2012 10:48:17 PM

fzabkar said:
As you say, your Lenovo BIOS supports UEFI, so eSATA should not be a problem.

http://support.lenovo.com/en_US/research/hints-or-tips/... (Drivers)
http://support.lenovo.com/en_US/downloads/detail.page?D... (BIOS)

You still need an appropriate Windows driver, though. As already mentioned by Rainey, you need the latest Intel RST driver to see the full 3TB (Version: 11.2.0.1006):

http://support.lenovo.com/en_US/downloads/detail.page?D...

You need to select AHCI mode for your SATA controller in BIOS. Perhaps this setting changed after your BIOS update.

In USB mode, the external drive is seen as a USB mass storage device and requires a different driver. Some USB enclosures have a 32-bit LBA limitation in their firmware.


But this exact same machine with the exact same driver set could read the drive before I bollixed it up. I was using the same usb/esata enclosure as well. I updated the bios on the debian server after using that server to accidentally blow away the partition table on the drives.

I checked the BIOS sata settings and they are set to AHCI. I am going to blow away and reinstall these drivers, though I pig-headedly do not think they are the problem. Thanks for your patience.

Wolf29
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September 29, 2012 11:01:40 PM

Yes it could read the drive but not all 3TB in one partition.
By default the drive would ship with a partition that would work with most systems. You have changed that partition type when you formatted it. It would have showed up as a 2.2 TB drive and the rest would show up as a different drive/partition if you were not running the newer driver that support the 3TB drive all in one partition.
Once you are running the correct drivers you should see the drive listed in disk management as 2.8TB and that could be made into one partition or more if you wanted. But without the correct driver you will not see the drive as 2.8TB.


Edit: If you plan on moving this drive between machines then all machines would need to be able to see all 3TB in one partition if you paln on making just one 3TB partition.

It seems that your USB connection can not and you would have to reseach if anyone with that Motherboard was able to see the full 3TB on a USB drive. This all come down to chipsets and drivers on each machine.

You could format it as a Fat32 and make a 2.2 TB partition that shoul be seen on all PC's and then an extra partition that could be seen on some PC's.
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September 29, 2012 11:25:53 PM

Rainey said:
Yes it could read the drive but not all 3TB in one partition.
By default the drive would ship with a partition that would work with most systems. You have changed that partition type when you formatted it. It would have showed up as a 2.2 TB drive and the rest would show up as a different drive/partition if you were not running the newer driver that support the 3TB drive all in one partition.
Once you are running the correct drivers you should see the drive listed in disk management as 2.8TB and that could be made into one partition or more if you wanted. But without the correct driver you will not see the drive as 2.8TB.


The debian machine could only read part of the drive. The T420 with Windows 7 64-bit could read the whole 3TB. The reason I wanted to get the debian machine to read the whole drive was because I have shell scripts to munge the data I get in but no Windows scripts to do it so using the Windows box slowed the data-munging down. Having messed up the drive on the debian machine by blowing away the partition table, now the drive- even completely unformatted, and with no partition table - reads as 802GB on both machines. The original error was because the debian machine needed a bios upgrade, but the current problem is constant on both machines, which is why I keep saying I need to find a way to change the sector size so the bios can perceive the proper capacity and I can add in the properly formatted partition table.
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a c 288 G Storage
September 30, 2012 10:44:55 AM

Which enclosure are you using?

If you are connecting via eSATA, then AFAICT the sector size will be 512-bytes. There is nothing you can do to change that.

Otherwise, if you are connecting via USB, it could be possible to configure the bridge firmware for either 4KB or 512-byte block sizes, but you will require a special tool from the manufacturer of the enclosure or the bridge IC. For example, WD has a Quick Formatter tool for this purpose.

In Linux you may be able to determine the existing block size using smartmontools:

http://smartmontools.sourceforge.net/

The following command line should return information from the bridge:

smartctl -a -d scsi /dev/ice

This command should retrieve information from the HDD:

smartctl -a -d sat /dev/ice

Replace "dev/ice" with an appropriate device name.

Smartctl man page:
http://smartmontools.sourceforge.net/man/smartctl.8.htm...
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