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Adaptec RAID0 XP Boot Issue

Posted on 2003-11-15
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Last Modified: 2010-04-03
New RAID0 setup.  

Problem ...system will not simply reboot or startup normally.  Always have to dink around with the boot process rebooting a second time selecting boot windows normally or go to Safe mode then go back to boot windows normally...  

Once I get to boot on raid0 I get no errors, no errors when it hangs.
It just hangs at the windows banner or gets almost to the welcome screen and then reboots... but only when windows xp is loaded on as a RAID0

It will simply hang in the boot process at the initial banner and all disk activity stops after two or three accesses. Sometimes the disk activity led is solid sometimes not when it hangs.  But I repeat myself after going from a normal attempt to a last config that booted or to safe mode and then back to a normal attempt I can usually get it to boot...

Sometimes when I get enough disk activity where it looks like it will boot and in the normal seqence the screen would go dark and go to the welcome the system reboots there.


I have tested both Cheetahs independantly formating them imaging them as single drives and they boot clean. Seagate diags show them both fine.

Tried new from web site and old drivers that came on disk.

Tried loading fresh copy of windows straight to raid0 array with same result.

Tried going from 320 to 160 SCSI in bios settings.

Have hung garlic and performed sacrifices!!!  Been working at this for weeks thinking I'm just being stupid and missing something simple

I've changed SCSI cables, moved adapter to another slot, moved array to channel B.

If I take the fresh load of windows put on the array and put on an IDE it works fine.  If I take it and put it on either Cheetah... it works fine. Works fine meaning I can reboot cleanly every time.

Both Cheetahs ST336753LW are at version 5 firmware.

Drive temps at 32 C.
max in Seagate diags.


I've even run chkdsk/r just to see if there were any corrupted files.

At this point I am suspecting the RAID controller.  I haven't another one to try.

It appears that there are few if any diags to run on the RAID controller.

This is my first attempt at SCSI RAID0...   I do allot of multitasking running Photoshop7 filters on many images and C1DSLR PRO RAW File Conversions and Neat Image cleanup all simultaniously as well as e-mail, web and file transfers to web end of day.  Getting the disk I/O subsystem optimized for me is a real need not a benchmark luxury or bragging right with peers'

Equipment Config: Dual 15k Cheetahs running on Adaptec 39320R controller running latest Hostraid drivers. 16K stripe. (Dual 2.8 Xeons 4GB Mushkin RAM) I have two other 18gb 15K IBM Piranahs on the onboard 39320 controller but I don't have the 2010s zero raid controller to try. I use these for swap and scratch drives.  3 (Data) IDE Drives PC Power and Cooling 510 power supply. SuperMicro X5DA8 mobo.

Also when booted ....performance does not meet equal = benchmarks in SIS Sandra.

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.
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Question by:rayrich01
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chicagoan earned 500 total points
ID: 9754909
1st of all, you've got a lot going on the pci bus there, and I'm not sure how much of an advantage you're getting by using the onboard 39320.
I think I'd have put the cheetahs on one channel and the piranahs on the other and disabled the onboard... but
Are these 68 pin drives with the adaptec cables and terminators?
Are you getting 320 snyc in the bios scan consistently?
Have you disabled the bios for the onboard?
Did you load the HostRaid drivers at install as a 3rd pard storage driver?
Do you have the 320R in the 133 PCI-X slot?
Have you tried to tweak the BIOS to give the 320R  it's own interrupt?
Have you triied setting your boot.ini wait time to 60 seconds?
16K stripe sounds a little small to me as well.. not an issue here bit I think I'd have gone for 64


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Author Comment

by:rayrich01
ID: 9755127
1st of all, you've got a lot going on the pci bus there, and I'm not sure how much of an advantage you're getting by using the onboard 39320.  

****FYI ieverything is PCI-x 64 bit just trying to get the clean RAID0 reboot I have disconnected all other drives so all I have is a c: drive and A:floppy and a D: CD


I think I'd have put the cheetahs on one channel and the piranahs on the other and disabled the onboard... but

***** I can always do this  once I get the system booting clean from the RAID0.  I had recommendations from other builders that they saw a performance difference keeping page and scratch on a secondary controller...I cant speak from experience yet on that.   I want to get stable and then dial it in.

Are these 68 pin drives with the adaptec cables and terminators?

****yes
Are you getting 320 snyc in the bios scan consistently?

****yes

Have you disabled the bios for the onboard?

yes on all the testing i run the raid alone no other drives.

Did you load the HostRaid drivers at install as a 3rd pard storage driver? yes
Do you have the 320R in the 133 PCI-X slot? yes
Have you tried to tweak the BIOS to give the 320R  it's own interrupt? yes
Have you triied setting your boot.ini wait time to 60 seconds? no not sure where that gets set where is the boot.ini
16K stripe sounds a little small to me as well.. not an issue here bit I think I'd have gone for 64 performance on all benchmarks I have run were incredibly poor.  Most digital darkroom photoshop PS7 bench tests I've seen on other systems on-line also show significant improvement with a 16k stripe.

The 32 or 64 k stripe variant also hasnt helped the boot ...

Thanks for the extra thought and comment.
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by:chicagoan
ID: 9756230
>Have you triied setting your boot.ini wait time to 60 seconds? no not sure where that gets set where is the boot.ini
My Computer > Properties > advanced > startup and recovery

>Most digital darkroom photoshop PS7 bench tests ...
good to know - I'll have to redo my wife's machine

Once you convince it to boot, it's OK?

Is Delay Motor Start enabled on the drives?
Is Send Start Command enabled in the SCSI BIOS?

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Author Comment

by:rayrich01
ID: 9759200
I think my terminators were loose where the ribbon cable connects to the connector at the end.  How I "managed" the SCSI cables could have contributed to this.

It appears I can get it to boot correctly since I addressed that issue.

Still verifying this though.

Thanks
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Expert Comment

by:chicagoan
ID: 9759545
"The little things always add up to the big things"
my ex-wife
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Author Comment

by:rayrich01
ID: 9764582
True
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