Unable to mount LaCie Ethernet Disk, but can access via Remote Desktop Connection.

I have a very old 2U LaCie Ethernet Disk which has a proprietary Windows XP Embedded software installed. I recently moved it from one physical location to another in a server rack and since then can no longer access it over the network as it won't accept the network credentials.

I can connect a KB/Mouse and monitor to the machine and see it boot up, I can then input the admin username/pw and boot into this special XP Embedded. I can see the data on the drive via a "Backup Wizard" but there is no traditional windows explorer.

There are no diagnostic issues present on the drive and the firewall for the drive is completely disabled. I can even connect to this drive via Remote Desktop Connection and see the same as if I connect directly.

However, if I try to access the drive contents via a networked computer using the IP address in order to map the drive... I'm presented with the prompt to Enter network credentials but it won't accept the admin password at this point, despite accepting those same credentials on login and via Remote Desktop Connection. I know the credentials are right because it's the same admin credentials for all of our network drives.

The disk itself is visible/detectable via the LaCie network assistant but it displays a message that it "Cannot list the device volumes. See the [web] Dashboard for more information." Clicking on the provided button to open the web access dashboard opens my browser with the machine's IP in the address field but I only get the message that "This site can't be reached" "[IP address] refused to connect".

I tried reaching out to LaCie but they were unwilling to provide any more help than just scripted suggestions, as it is well out of warranty and a deprecated device (understandable, yet frustrating).

Currently, I'm going through the process of manually backing up the contents of the drive via the Backup Wizard but I can only do so in small chunks as doing too much causes a failure which requires rebooting the device and starting over if a backup was cut off. The device itself can see/access the rest of the network, but as there is no traditional explorer I can't manually drag/drop copy files over to another network space. Instead I'm forced to use the backup wizard and create individual .bkf files for each of these backup "chunks" and then decompressing them using NT5 backup (Windows NT Backup/Restore Utility) but so far this process has taken two weeks and I've so far only gotten about 150GB of files off. Would really like to find a faster way to do this.

This is as much detail as I know to provide. Wondering if anyone out there has any insight into this issue. Or perhaps a way to bypass LaCie's XP Embedded in order to see a more traditional XP interface?
Christopher HillMedia TechnicianAsked:
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Martyn SpencerSoftware Developer / Linux System Administrator / Managing DirectorCommented:
On the surface, it seems as though the hardware is failing, hence the inability to back up the data in its entirety and the apparent loss of configuration (albeit partial). The risk is that the longer the device is operating, the more likelihood there is of failure. If the hard drives themselves are showing no errors, that's a good thing and it could be the device itself that is just being problematic.

I am assuming that the storage is set up as a RAID array. If it is a single disk, or JBOD it would be easier for you. I would consider removing the hard drives from the unit, taking images of them and then using the images to reconstruct the array. Usually, I do this reconstruction in a virtual machine. You may need an adapter to be able to read the disks and take the images if they are not SATA. If you are lucky, the storage is set up as a standard Windows RAID and you would be able to use a virtual machine, or a physical machine, running an OS that can mount the images and read the data. The advantage here is that you do nothing destructive with the drives themselves.

Another option is to see if you can source a second hand NAS device and just swap out your hard drives. Depending on the NAS software, the configuration could be stored on the HDDs so switching them to a different NAS box may work.

If you do go down the route of removing HDDs, do make sure that you carefully record the order in which you remove them and do observe good anti-static precautions. You don't want to risk damage to the drives.
ste5anSenior DeveloperCommented:
I don't know this device, but as you said it's pretty old: Does your new environment support SMB1?
Martyn SpencerSoftware Developer / Linux System Administrator / Managing DirectorCommented:
I would add to my comment above that since you did not mention anything specific had changed client-side that I ruled out versions of SMB (that ste5an is correct to mention). If you have changed anything client side it could be that your old device cannot be accessed because older versions of SMB (the file sharing protocol used by Windows and NAS devices like the Lacie) are insecure and newer versions of Windows do not support it by default. You need to make changes to clients to have them read older devices and this is not really very secure.

So, if you have changed nothing client side, consider my suggestion above. If something has changed, check SMB versions first, see if you can back up reliably that way and go from there - it would be easier.
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Christopher HillMedia TechnicianAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the tips guys. I checked my Windows Features just to ensure that I had SMB 1 support turned on. I did have the CIFS Client enabled but not CIFS Server. Server shouldn't have affected it, but I enabled it anyway. No luck.

Just to test, I disabled both and restarted and once I was back in tried accessing the drive and got a new Windows error stating that this drive is only accessible via SMB 1. So, that at least confirms the need. I re-enabled and restarted but we're back at the same position there. I can Remote Desktop to the server drive but I can't map it on my local computer. =/

Martyn, concerning the process of physical removal (I do believe it's in a Raid) does the virtual system have to be identical to the one currently being used (i.e. Windows XP) in order to rebuild the array?
Christopher HillMedia TechnicianAuthor Commented:
Aside from SMB 1, and considering this is quite old hardware, is there perhaps another "Windows Feature" that might be preventing the credentials being typed from my client computer from being recognized by the server disk?

I'm quite a bit out of my depth regarding this issue, so I'm kind of shooting from the hip at this point. =/
Martyn SpencerSoftware Developer / Linux System Administrator / Managing DirectorCommented:
No worries, that's what we are here for.

If you changed nothing client-side, one would hope that it is not a client issue, but clearly it can't be ruled out. I would suggest that if the internal backup on the Lacie is unreliable, you should proceed with a degree of caution as I personally would not be trusting the longevity of the device.

You should not need exactly the same set-up in the virtual machine. If you have a version of XP that you can install, it should read the drives if they are based on standard Windows partitioning and RAID configuration. I believe that Linux is able to read certain NTFS RAID arrays, but I have no experience of this myself. With that in mind, if you don't have a suitable version of WIndows you could try a Linux distro.

The problem could be that Lacie decided to create their own RAID implementation and this may cause you some issues. It's still worth a shot and if you can find any information online about the disk configuration on the Lacie, it would allow you to make a more informed decision. I did not notice the model number of the device. What is it?
Christopher HillMedia TechnicianAuthor Commented:
It's called the LaCie Ethernet Disk, Item Number: 301298, the 2TB version

Link to Data Sheet

Link to User Manual

Unfortunately, the brunt of administration for the network drive is done from the web administration page. The support software, LaCie Ethernet Agent and LaCie Network Assistant, both see the drive at the appropriate static IP however any attempts to access the web administration are refused, and I'm not sure why (other than possible hardware corruption like you suggest).

The XP embedded shell doesn't give the same configuration or administration options that you have via the Web interface.

Edit: I just want to point out that I have also tried accessing the drive via FTP client but that connection was also refused.
Martyn SpencerSoftware Developer / Linux System Administrator / Managing DirectorCommented:
If you are in any doubts and the drive data is important to you, this is possibly the time to have a professional take a look at the drive for you. If you are confident in your abilities, you could have a look inside to see how many drives are present. If the unit accepts a mains connection (ie no adapter is used) be aware that internal power supplies can store dangerous quantities of electricity, so do not attempt this if you are not experienced with electrical equipment.

The above being said, I would be taking my above approach. One cannot ignore the fact that something clearly changed with the physical move. If the device has been operational for a long period of time, the restart itself could simply be reason enough for the configuration to now appear corrupt. Restoring configuration on some of these devices can damage the data that you have stored, so be a little wary of attempting to change the configuration. I would, at this stage, be imaging the drives before doing anything else as a means of minimising the chances of data loss.
Christopher HillMedia TechnicianAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the comments and help. So far haven't been successful with the less invasive approaches. Handed it off to a professional to do the more invasive approach of pulling the drives. Appreciate the rapid assistance!

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Martyn SpencerSoftware Developer / Linux System Administrator / Managing DirectorCommented:
You're welcome. It would be appreciated if you would mark any of the comments you found helpful so that at least some points are awarded for the time spent assisting. Best of luck with the professional recovery.
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