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REINITIALIZE RAID DISK 01 - RAID 5 - SATA - DELL POWEREDGE 800

Posted on 2013-01-09
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Last Modified: 2016-11-23
Is there a way to Reinitialize a single RAID drive (New 500GB), and then repopulate it?

Do I need to format or wipe the new drive first?

Is there something in the startup bios that I can use to reinitialize and repopulate the new corrupt drive?


What happened?
Our server had a HDD failure - Disk 01. It failed to boot, and was making a loud warning beep. I contacted Dell, they showed me how to disabled the beep, and they said to purchase a replacement HDD disk with equal or greater than the HDD space on the failed drive.

I purchased a new 500GB drive, and called them back. I installed the drive, and we were able to login to Windows SBS 2003, and configure the new drive. However, I accidentially logged out or locked the server when it was populating the new RAID drive.

It then threw a bunch of file i/o errors, and I was unable to reboot. I disconected the new drive, and was able to boot into Windows SBS 2003 again.

I'm unfamiliar with the terminology, so please be patient.

Thank you.

OUR SERVER INFO:
WINDOWS SBS 2003
DELL POWEREDGE 800
RAID 5
SATA DRIVES
+ 2 HDD x 80GB RAID
+ 1 HDD x 500GB RAID
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Question by:NKOWA
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by:zackmccracken
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you should have dell openmanage or dell raid manager software installed within windows 2003. in that application you should find more info on the rebuild process which should start automatically or supply you with an option to rebuild once the disk has been inserted

it rebuilds on a block level so you shouldnt need a wipe or something..
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by:NKOWA
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We have dell openmanage within WINDOWS 2003 SBS, but when I plug the drive back I can't boot to Windows.

Is there a way to rebuild just drive [01] this using the RAID boot DOS utility?
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by:zackmccracken
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ok, the bios raid config util should supply you with enough information.

the raid set should be degraded with one disk failing
when you insert the new disk it should rebuild which might take some time.

power down the server, insert the drive, boot up into bios, start the raid tool, check the raid set (it seems you should only have one raid set judging by the specs you mentioned)

please let me know if you can see wether its rebuilding or its still degraded and not showing the 3rd new drive..
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by:PowerEdgeTech
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What you described should not happen (not really possible).  

"I accidentially logged out or locked the server when it was populating the new RAID drive."

If you are talking about a hardware RAID controller, your logging out/locking the machine would have nothing to do with the failed RAID rebuild.  You can leave the rebuild in the OS, out of the OS, use the machine as usual, unplug it from the network, reboot, boot to BIOS, etc. and the rebuild will continue as if nothing happened.  It may just be a coincidence that it happened when you logged off - it is much more likely a bad or incompatible drive.

Which RAID controller do you have?  Which model drive did you purchase to replace the failed one?
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by:NKOWA
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I have already left the office, so I will have to wait until tomorrow to test your solution.

I just need to rebuild DRIVE 01.

Is this possible?

If so, do I need to do anything special, like format or wipe the disk prior to pluging it back in?

Yes, when I remove DISK 01 (500GB), and leave DISK 00 and 02, it says it is degraded.

Note: I'm not 100% sure, but I think I remember the bios util RAID status say "failure" when all three are plugged in.
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by:PowerEdgeTech
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"I just need to rebuild DRIVE 01.  Is this possible?"

Yes, it should be, barring a bad/DOA drive and/or array corruption.

"If so, do I need to do anything special, like format or wipe the disk prior to pluging it back in?"

That depends on which RAID controller you are working with.  Which controller do you have?

"Yes, when I remove DISK 01 (500GB), and leave DISK 00 and 02, it says it is degraded."

This is normal to see until disk 1 completes its rebuild.

"Note: I'm not 100% sure, but I think I remember the bios util RAID status say "failure" when all three are plugged in."

Would need to know exactly what it says and where.
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by:zackmccracken
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first:

i hope you have a recent backup of all the data on the server should something go wrong..

whatever you do do not clear the config of the raid/array set, otherwise all the data gets lost.


second:
regarding you latest comment, saying it says being degraded or failed when the 3rd disk is inserted, you might have to add the 3rd disk to the raid set, so;

i think you need to reconfigure the raid set and add an available drive which should be the new addition (larger harddisk) after which it should rebuild..

let me know if this works..
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by:NKOWA
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ME: If so, do I need to do anything special, like format or wipe the disk prior to pluging it back in?

YOU: That depends on which RAID controller you are working with.  Which controller do you have?

ANSWER: I think the RAID controller is SATA CERC.
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by:NKOWA
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say the RAID DISK 01  (new disk) is corrupted due to shut down when it was being rebuilt in WINDOWS - DISK/OPENMANAGER, do I need to format the new drive before rebuilding the RAID DISK 01 (new disk) again?

FYI: Data backed up with Windows Backup 1 day ago.

Thank you very much for your time.
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by:PowerEdgeTech
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Again, shutting down during the rebuild would not have caused disk 1 to become corrupted (unless it is running really old firmware and the older firmware has a relevant bug).  You should not need to format the disk.  You will need to assign it as a hot-spare to begin rebuilding it.  If you cannot assign it as a hot-spare, then choose Initialize and initialize ONLY that disk before assigning it as a hot-spare.
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by:NKOWA
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Thank you for answering my hypothetical questions so quickly.

I have never updated the firmware on this particular machine, and it probably has never been updated, unless if it was automatically updated through windows updates or something.

I will try the rebuild process tomorrow for the new DISK 01 according to your guidelines.

Note:
I am able to boot into WINDOWS with a degraded RAID (DISK 00 & DISK 02)

Should be updating the firmware prior to rebuilding DISK 01?

Would performing a last minute backup put too much strain on a degraded RAID?
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by:NKOWA
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The new disk 01 is a Seagate 500 GB Desktop.
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PowerEdgeTech earned 400 total points
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I have never updated the firmware on this particular machine, and it probably has never been updated, unless if it was automatically updated through windows updates or something.
Windows/Microsoft does not update firmware ... it would have been obtained from Dell and applied manually.

I am able to boot into WINDOWS with a degraded RAID (DISK 00 & DISK 02)
Again, this is normal, but when you simply INSERT (forget whether or not it rebuilds) disk 1 and it doesn't boot, then you have a problem - probably with the disk.

Should be updating the firmware prior to rebuilding DISK 01?
No.  Only in very rare cases should you ever update firmware when the RAID is degraded.

Would performing a last minute backup put too much strain on a degraded RAID?
Probably not, but it depends on how healthy the array and other disks are.  If you do not have a backup of everything you need, then you need to back it up while you can.

The new disk 01 is a Seagate 500 GB Desktop.
If you have problems rebuilding your disk, this is likely why ... desktop/cheap consumer grade disks are not suitable for RAID arrays and can experience any number of issues, including not being recognized at all, random timeouts/failures, inability to configure/rebuild, poor performance, etc.

Try it and see what happens.
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by:NKOWA
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What HDDs are recommended for a SATA II RAID 5?
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by:NKOWA
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by:NKOWA
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Enterprise HDD here:
http://www.wdc.com/en/products/products.aspx?id=30

Amazon.com:
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B003SARYDK

Thank you, I have learned too much about RAID!
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by:PowerEdgeTech
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The CERC SATA 1.5/6CH is a 1.5Gbps/SATAI controller ... SATA II should work fine though.

The WD RE (RAID Edition) would be a better choice.
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by:NKOWA
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Thank you for your generous enlightenment.
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by:NKOWA
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BTW: I should start a new thread, but, does SSD HDDs work with the CERC RAID CONTROLLER?
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by:NKOWA
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by:PowerEdgeTech
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No. They might "work", but the CERC has no idea how to optimize for them - it would be a huge waste of money to put SSD's on a CERC.  Also, SSD's and HDD's cannot be mixed on some controllers (probably the case with the CERC) and cannot be mixed in the same array (this is the case on nearly every controller) so would not work to replace your failed disk.  

You could ditch the CERC altogether and plug them into the onboard SATA ports (with RAID disabled) and run them individually - or in a software (OS-managed) RAID ... if you were ready to start from scratch.  Also, from what I could see in a quick search, the onboard SATA controller in the 800 is only SATA I too ... I would just forget about SSD's on the 800 :)
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by:PowerEdgeTech
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The PERC 6 was the first to "officially" support SSD's.  The newest controllers (H710/H700) for Dell servers are optimized for SSD's.
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