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[HP Embedded RAID] "Verify"?

Posted on 2008-11-02
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In the HP Embedded RAID controller screens which show during startup what does a "verify" status indicate? What can I do to put my array back to "Optimal"?
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Question by:tigermatt
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m3tech earned 2000 total points
ID: 22862750
I'm not completely familiar with HP's raid bios, so more detail would be helpful. Did this screen originally say 'optimal' and has now changed to 'verify'?

Is there any raid management/monitoring software available once you are in windows? You may find this software in the taskbar or burried somewhere on the all programs list from the start menu. If this software is present it is often easier to work with to identify problems.

The other option is to watch the startup screens carefully to identify the key combination to enter raid bios (much the same as system bios). You may need to disable any 'quick boot' or similar options in system bios.

Once this key combination is identified and entered you should be taken to the raid bios screen. This typically has options to view the status of the raid arrays as well as make configuration changes. Please be VERY careful here as you could erase your entire raid array in a few clicks. Feel free to post back here with exact menu options before doing anything from raid bios.

Also, what type of raid array do you have (RAID 0, 1, 5, etc)?
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by:tigermatt
ID: 22863035

RAID 1. This is a client's ML110 server (client can't afford any more) so HP Array Configuration Utility cannot be used in Windows on this server unfortunately.

The screen original said Optimal, and on many other systems I have setup similar their RAID arrays all say Optimal, so I think there is some issue with this particular server.

I won't be able to attend the client site for at least 2 weeks, but if you could just let me know exactly what this 'Verify' means so I know what I need to do, and how urgent it is that I get it fixed, I'd be most grateful. This is one of the client's main File and Print Servers so need to keep it running ! :)
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by:m3tech
ID: 22863796
I would suspect that the raid bios has detected some level of inconsistency on the drives and is either automatically verifying the integrity of the data or warning that you should do so. Typically if one of the drives had failed you would get a more ominous message from a raid controller, like "degraded".

The obvious first step is to look at the status of the raid and drive under the raid bios.

Hopefully you have some form of backup in place for this customer, verify that it has completed just in case. Verifiying the raid without a windows component of the raid manager involves taking the system offline and running a 'consistency check' or something similar from raid bios. This can require significant time (during which the server will be unavailabe).

If this doesn't resolve the problem, explain to the client there might be a problem and suggest replacing one of the drives, and rebuilding the array. The replacing the second and rebuilding again. Hopefully rebuilding will proceed with the server online.

I actually just went through this process with client that had a horrible excuse for a raid controller / monitoring software. After replacing the 2 drives the errors went away even though the raid bios consistency check had been ran on the old drives with no problems.
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by:tigermatt
ID: 22868163

I've seen mention of Verifying the array status elsewhere, so I'll give that a go. It will be at least 2 weeks before I am at the client site again, so I'll get back to you as soon as I can.

-tm
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by:tigermatt
ID: 22897661

Got to the client's site last night; the server on each reboot seems to be jumping between 'Optimal' and 'Verify'. I'm going to purchase a third drive and install it as a hotspare on the RAID 1 array, so hopefully if something is awry that will give some more resilience.

The only problem with this particular series of server (100 series) is you can't use ACU to monitor the RAID array status - you can only tell by watching the console when you restart the thing (or climbing around in the server room to look at the front lights!)

Cheers, thanks again.
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