11 Replies Latest reply on Jul 14, 2018 4:53 PM by RonOnThePond

    RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)

    RonOnThePond

      I have a Dell T7600 with a 3TB RAID-1 array (net 2,795 GB) on an Intel C600 series chipset SATA AHCI Controller. One drive in the array recently failed, and I replaced and rebuilt it with no issues. I've also now replaced the other drive, which began showing signs of imminent failure. Again, the replacement drive was recognized and the array was successfully rebuilt (which takes more than all night). The system seems to be working fine, other than an occasional hang on "shutting down" which has plagued me for a long time. In that case, I manually power down the system, restart, and Windows 7 boots normally. I have also made a habit of manually closing all running applications before a restart/shutdown.

       

      The problem I'm having is that every time I restart the system, the RAID-1 is seen as degraded. It rebuilds fine, but the cycle continues. I read one post here suggesting the need to verify the array after a rebuild before shutting down or restarting. I did that, too, with the same results.

       

      The drives are both Seagate with identical specifications, but not the same model. Hard Disk Sentinel finds no problem with either drive, reporting 100% health. Intel's RST software shows no parity errors or media errors after verifying the array. The system runs normally while in operation. I ran the Intel Driver & Support assistant, which reported no software updates are available for my system.

       

      So why does it rebuild after every reboot? Is there a step I'm missing, or maybe a simple conflict that prevents a registry entry from being updated correctly? I am guessing (or at least hoping) the solution is simple but easily overlooked. I am not a hardware expert, so this is a little bit outside of my wheelhouse. Any help would be much appreciated.

       

      Ron

        • 1. Re: RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)
          Intel Corporation
          This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

          Hello, RonOnThePond. Thank you very much for taking the time to reach the Intel Communities Team. I will do my best to assist you further.

          In order for me to assist you better, please provide me with the .txt file that the System Support Utility will generate. To attach a file, you must click the “Attach” option on the bottom right-hand corner of the response box.
          Furthermore, please attach an Intel® Rapid Storage Technology report.


          Antony S.

           

          • 2. Re: RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)
            RonOnThePond

            Antony, thank you for your quick reply. I hope you can help. I've attached the two files you requested. I can also generate a detailed report from Hard Disk Sentinel, so let me know if that might help.

             

            Ron

            • 3. Re: RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)
              Intel Corporation
              This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

              Thank you for your reports, RonOnThePond.

              Allow me to transfer this case to the proper support group.


              Antony S.

              • 4. Re: RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)
                RonOnThePond

                Thank you. I am eagerly awaiting your advice.

                • 5. Re: RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)
                  Intel Corporation
                  This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

                  Hello RonOnThePond,

                  Thanks for contacting the Intel® Rapid Storage Technology enterprise (Intel® RSTe) support forum, thanks for the Reports you've shared with us and after researching on them we recommend you to do the following: please detach one of the RAID-1 Disks and then format it into another equipment, and then attach the formatted disk once again and launch the RAID Rebuild process so the RSTe Software will recreate the RAID information. Once you've done this process please test your equipment to see if the situation persists. 

                  Please remember that because this involves a RAID change, we strongly recommend you to make a backup of all the important information you've on the Volume.

                  Also, please remember that if you require more assistance or want to add additional details, we'll be glad to assist you

                  Best regards,

                  Chris

                  • 6. Re: RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)
                    RonOnThePond

                    Chris, thank you for the reply, but I'm not sure I understand. Are you recommending that I remove either one of the two RAID-1 drives from my computer, install it in a different computer, format the drive in that second computer, and then replace it into my Dell and rebuild the array? I don't see how this is possible. I have only one computer (my Dell T7600) that can accommodate this drive, so I am out of luck if that's the only solution. In that case, I'll have to live from one reboot to the next.

                     

                    This leads me to three questions. First, if reformatting a drive is your recommended solution, can that be done in my existing computer? If so, can you provide the specific steps for removing it from the array, and then safely reformatting it while leaving the other "good" drive intact with my data?

                     

                    Secondly, once the rebuild that occurs after each reboot is complete, is the RAID-1 functioning properly to achieve data redundancy?

                     

                    And lastly, to help me understand the situation, what leads you to believe that reformatting a drive will solve this?

                     

                    Thank you for your help and patience.

                     

                    Ron

                    • 7. Re: RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)
                      Intel Corporation
                      This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

                      Hello RonOnThePond,

                      Thanks for your reply and the recommendation it's to remove one of the RAID-1 disks from the array to format/clear that disk and rebuild the RAID; we can achieve this by going into the Option ROM from your PC by pressing Ctrl+I.

                      Please see attached the OptionROM Example image with your current Configuration (4 Drives with 2x 3TB on RAID1), the instructions are as the following: 

                      1. Turn Off your Equipment and Turn it On; press Ctrl+I to enter into the RSTe Option ROM Utility
                      2. On the OptionROM select the Option 3 "Reset Disks to Non-RAID" and press Enter
                      3. You'll have a screen with the title "RESET RAID DATA", in that screen highlight the Second Disk from the RAID and select it with Space
                      4. Press Enter, you'll be asked "Are you sure you want to reset RAID data on the selected disks? (Y/N):", press Y to confirm the reset.
                      5. You'll got a screen titled "DEGRADED VOLUME DETECTED", presenting you the available drives to rebuild the RAID, Highlight the 3TB drive you've removed previously and press Enter.
                      6. You'll be returned to the Main Option ROM screen, it'll show the RAID on "Rebuild" Status and a message telling "Volume with 'Rebuild' status will be rebuilt within the operating system"; at this point you can reset your equipment and let RSTe rebuild the RAID normally. 
                      In regards to the redundancy question, actually it's normal that RSTe rebuilds a RAID if it finds that the data it's not full-synced; in that situation it'll automatically rebuild the RAID data to ensure redundancy across drives, however; isn't expected that it'll do the rebuild every system reboot; and about the reformatting, actually the intention it's to force a Rebuild of the RAID Information as the persistent Rebuild on every reboot could be caused due to different drive models could be causing the situation you have, since both drives have different Physical Sector Sizes (512 bytes and 4096 bytes).

                      Please let us know of the results and remember that if you require more assistance or want to add additional details, we'll be glad to assist you.

                      Best regards,

                      Chris
                      • 8. Re: RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)
                        RonOnThePond

                        Thank you for that detailed reply, and for the extremely helpful example simulation image. May I clarify a few things before I initiate those steps? First, as I understand it now, I do not need a second computer, do not need to physically remove either drive, and do not need to manually initiate the formatting of a drive. Is that correct?

                         

                        Second, do I understand correctly that when I remove drive #2 from the array, the data on disk #2 will be erased while the data on disk #1 remains as-is, unchanged?

                         

                        Third, will the outlined procedure automatically set the physical sector size of disk#2 to 4096 instead of 512 to match that of disk#1?

                         

                        While I await your confirmation of the above I will make an external local backup of drive D: (just in case).

                         

                        Thank you again for your excellent responsiveness. I really appreciate it.

                         

                        Ron

                        • 9. Re: RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)
                          Intel Corporation
                          This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

                          Hello RonOnThePond,

                          Thanks for your reply and that's correct, with this procedure you don't need a second computer to do the process as it can be done completely locally into your equipment. 

                          When you remove one of the RAID1 Drives, the first will remain unchanged and the second will become available to be part of a RAID Array, so when you attach the Drive again following this procedure, the Rebuild process will begin to sync the information from the First Drive into the second rebuilding the RAID Structure. 

                          And in regards to your last question this will not Sync the Physical Sector Size of the drives as it's defined by Hardware and Drive Geometry, however; the RAID Structure Information will be rebuilt and that it's what we want to do to ensure that all the information it's properly synced. 

                          We always recommend to make a Full Backup of the contents on the RAID Volume as this will affect the RAID Structure; please let us know of the result of the RAID Rebuild Process and remember that if you require more assistance or want to add additional details, we'll be glad to assist you.

                          Best regards,

                          Chris

                          • 10. Re: RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)
                            RonOnThePond

                            Hi, Chris. I made a backup of drive D:, etc., and the array has begun rebuilding. Interestingly (in case it's relevant), the first reboot did not show a degraded array. The following reboot did, and I began your instructions.

                             

                            Question: after the rebuild completes, should I also verify the array? I would think that's not necessary immediately after a rebuild, but just to be sure ...

                             

                            Thanks,

                            Ron

                             

                            UPDATE: The rebuild is complete and I'm ready to reboot to see if this worked. Is anything to be gained by verifying the array before I reboot? It takes about a day, so if there's no gain, I won't bother. Let me know ... thanks!

                            • 11. Re: RAID-1 rebuilds after every reboot (Dell T7600)
                              RonOnThePond

                              Chris, after the rebuild completed I also ran the verification from Intel RSTe. No problems. Then I did a full shutdown. Restarted. The array was "normal." So far so good. I started no programs, manually closed any that autostarted, and instead of shutdown/restart I simply restarted the system in a single step. This time the array showed as degraded. Windows started, and the array is now rebuilding for the um-teenth time.

                               

                              So these steps have apparently left me where I started. Can I provide you with any other data that might lead to "plan B" to solve this?

                               

                              I appreciate your help, and will keep my fingers crossed that my array can become healthy somehow.

                               

                              Ron

                               

                              UPDATE 7/14/18: I have a new theory, but don't know if it makes any sense. I've now done a couple total shutdowns, and the array is normal when I power up. If I remember correctly, previous shutdown/powerups have not shown a degraded array. It is the one-step "restart" that seems to result in the array rebuilding. This is based on memory, not extensive repeated testing (which would take days).

                               

                              Is there anything different about a shutdown/powerup versus a restart that would cause the latter to see the array as degraded, but not the former?

                               

                              Just an uneducated guess based on observation. There may be nothing to this theory.

                               

                              Waiting for you to weigh in, Chris. Thanks!

                               

                              Ron