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Copying to harddrive causes Server 2003 to hang but not XP.

Posted on 2006-06-08
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Last Modified: 2010-04-26
I recently bought a 400GB SATA harddrive and installed it into my Windows Server 2003 machine. When I tried to format the drive, it got to 100% and then the operating system hung (screen froze, mouse wouldn't move, DNS server stopped working, shares stopped working, etc.) So I put it in my XP machine and it formatted fine. When I put it in my server again and tried to copy a 200MB file to it, the operating system hung again. But again, the problem does not exist on my XP machine. I have tried different SATA cables and different SATA ports on the motherboard. I have also run scandisk on the drive and it found no errors. I use to have an 80GB SATA drive on the same SATA controller so I can't imagine that the controller is faulty. Does anyone have any suggestions? Is it possible that the controller doesn't like the drive due to its larger capacity? Are there any utilities on the market that would allow me to test some of the hardware in my server without shutting it down? Any help would be appreciated.
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Question by:rbichon
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by:Callandor
ID: 16860774
Is this an SATA II drive?  There are known problems when connecting an SATA II drive to an SATA I controller.  There is usually a jumper on the drive to force it into SATA I mode for compatability.
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by:rbichon
ID: 16860869
No, it is a SATA I drive. I bought it off of Newegg and they list it as "Western Digital Caviar RE2 WD4000YR 400GB 7200 RPM Serial ATA150 RAID-specific Hard Drive - OEM". I should also mention that it is not in a RAID array. Should that make a difference?
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by:Callandor
Callandor earned 400 total points
ID: 16860930
No, not being in a RAID array should not make any difference.  Test the throughput of your SATA connection with HDTune: http://www.hdtune.com/
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by:rbichon
ID: 16861442
Thanks for that link. The benchmark test showed that the transfer rate dropped over the course of the test from 62.0 MB/s to 36.0 MB/s. It averaged 54.3 MB/s. All of the items in the Health tab showed up as OK. However, when I did the error scan, the system froze at the 13583 MB mark. I noticed that the MB mfg has a new bios out for this board so I will load that. When I get a chance, I will remove the drive from the server and run the test again on my XP machine to see if it detects an error at the same point on the drive. I will also try to update all of the drivers on the server.
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by:rbichon
ID: 16861793
I also noticed that the drive does not return a serial number in the Info tab where as one of my other drives does.

The motherboard is from Tyan (S5120) which uses an Intel 915 chipset. I downloaded the new chipset drivers and installed them. Now I am just waiting for a good time to reboot the machine. I'll let you know if anything changes. Thanks for your help.
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rindi earned 600 total points
ID: 16862869
I think you'll need a firmware update for your sata controller (or a bios update if that isn't separate).
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by:rbichon
ID: 16870225
I updated the system bios like rindi suggested and the chipset software and everything works now. Thanks.
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by:rindi
ID: 16870438
your welcome
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