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Did WHS corrupt my files? RRS feed

  • Question

  • I have a home-rolled setup of WHS running on XenServer 5.5. In the XenServer host I have three storage locations, one on the boot drive, then one each on two 1TB drives. My WHS install has the system drive on the XenServer boot drive, and one large drive on each of the 1TB drives. So WHS sees three disks total.

    I few months ago I finally took the plunge and moved my files over. I haven't noticed any problems with the exception of a number of ISOs downloaded from MSDN that have become corrupted...their SHA-1 hashes don't match what is published on MSDN. I haven't checked each and every ISO, but so far I've found 5-10 out of 50+ ISOs that are corrupted. I've moved these files around from drive to drive a number of times without any issues. I can't remember exactly, but I was either running Windows 7 x64 RC or RTM when I finally copied them to the home server. I do have file duplication turn on for the ISO share.

    I know that this setup more than likely isn't a support setup, but is there really that much different going on at such a low level that running it virtualized would have this effect? If this is the case, would a pass through disk in Hyper-V be any different? Or was it possibly something network related from the RC? Or some incompatibility between Windows 7 and WHS? 

    Thanks!
    John
    Monday, October 19, 2009 2:26 PM

Answers

  • My honest recommendation: if this is to be a production system, rather than something you play around with when you feel like it, put Windows Home Server on dedicated hardware. You really don't want to run production systems in an unsupported state. (Not that there's any support other than these forums and others like them for Windows Home Server...)

    As for the rest, I'm going to tell you to "try it and see". One note: you may not be able to make iSCSI volumes visible to Windows Home Server for use in the storage pool. And using iSCSI volumes is, of course, unsupported.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    • Proposed as answer by kariya21Moderator Thursday, October 22, 2009 1:40 AM
    • Marked as answer by JohnClayton Thursday, October 22, 2009 1:46 AM
    Monday, October 19, 2009 4:06 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • You're correct: virtualization of Windows Home Server is unsupported. :)

    It's quite possible that XenServer introduced the issues you're seeing. I've never used it, but virtualization (including virtual HDs) requires drivers, and those drivers can potentially cause issues with Windows Home Server. You could try HyperV passthrough disks, as they basically expose the actual hardware to the guest OS, but you will still be operating in an unsupported state.

    One thing that you don't make clear: are you running XenServer or are you running the open source Xen hypervisor? If the former, you have a support option, since it's a Citrix product. If the latter, you have fewer options...

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Monday, October 19, 2009 3:13 PM
    Moderator
  • You're correct: virtualization of Windows Home Server is unsupported. :)

    It's quite possible that XenServer introduced the issues you're seeing. I've never used it, but virtualization (including virtual HDs) requires drivers, and those drivers can potentially cause issues with Windows Home Server. You could try HyperV passthrough disks, as they basically expose the actual hardware to the guest OS, but you will still be operating in an unsupported state.

    One thing that you don't make clear: are you running XenServer or are you running the open source Xen hypervisor? If the former, you have a support option, since it's a Citrix product. If the latter, you have fewer options...

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    I am running the Citrix XenServer, but the free version so support from them is likely not available other than the forums.

    Do you know if, when using pass through disks, the VM uses native hardware drivers? Or does it still need special drivers that are simply exposing a different kind of disk to it?

    Any guesses if turning off disk duplication would help? I've been wanting to put together an OpenSolaris iSCSI server for this type of thing, and the protection provided by ZFS would allow me to safely turn off duplicated shares.
    Monday, October 19, 2009 3:39 PM
  • My honest recommendation: if this is to be a production system, rather than something you play around with when you feel like it, put Windows Home Server on dedicated hardware. You really don't want to run production systems in an unsupported state. (Not that there's any support other than these forums and others like them for Windows Home Server...)

    As for the rest, I'm going to tell you to "try it and see". One note: you may not be able to make iSCSI volumes visible to Windows Home Server for use in the storage pool. And using iSCSI volumes is, of course, unsupported.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    • Proposed as answer by kariya21Moderator Thursday, October 22, 2009 1:40 AM
    • Marked as answer by JohnClayton Thursday, October 22, 2009 1:46 AM
    Monday, October 19, 2009 4:06 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks, Ken. While I really would have liked to keep WHS virtualized to minimize the amount of hardware I have sucking up power, it really scares me to not be able to trust what should be rock-solid storage. I'll be looking at getting some cheap hardware and pulling those big disks into their own system.

    Thanks!
    John
    Thursday, October 22, 2009 1:52 AM