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Does duplication duplicate bad sectors?? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi - the short question is:  Will shared folder duplication actually duplicate the imprint of bad sectors from one drive to another?

    Here's the detail leading me to this question:

    I was periodically getting file conflict errors with the vague error message "The group or resource is not in the correct state to perform the requested operation" which per the FAQ indicated tombstones were pointing to shadows which no longer existed.  I had to delete the offending files, luckily nothing critical.  But finally I got the dreaded CRC error, indicating drive failure.  I ran the chkdsk first on the sys volume (no errors ,thankfully, then across all drives by using the command line "for  /d  %1  in  (c:\fs\*)  do  chkdsk  /x  /r  %1" and found (and corrected) errors in two separate drives!  Chkdsk found one drive with data in the bad sectors and tried to relocate them; the other (2TB) drive had no data to be moved.  I successfully removed the offending drive and in a separate computer re-ran chkdsk and confirmed the bad sectors (about 350GB on a 1.5TB drive, reformatted and checked again and found the same results.  So I RMA'ed the disk (a WD Caviar Green 1.5TB drive) and got a replacement, which was clean according to Windows format.

    So I then removed the 2TB Hitachi Deskstar drive (after re-running chkdsk and confirming about the same amount of bad sectors - around 350GB), took it out and ran Windows format using another computer.  Chkdsk found no bad sectors!  I downloaded the Hitachi drive tester and it proclaimed it clean.  I'm now running the advanced, comprehensive checker, which will take all night.

    So this got me to wondering if the short question is true: Does WHS duplication also duplicate bad sectors?  It seems too crazy to be true, but I need to raise it.  I'm hesitant to RMA this drive, because outside of WHS I cannot find any problem with the drive.  I should also note that I always run a Windows format on my drives first, before putting them in WHS, to check the integrity of the drive, and at the time both drives checked out fine.  Well, the WD drive definitely went bad later, but the Hitachi...

    I should also mention I'm running WHS with PP2 on a stable Core 2 Duo E7200 machine, which I had used with XP for a year prior to WHS.

    Sunday, April 18, 2010 7:38 AM

Answers

  • To "wrap" this up, although there never was an official answer, I am concluding that my bad sector issue was the "ghost bad sectors" issue with Win2003 server and HDD's >1TB when using IDE mode.  Even though the version of WHS I installed had SP2, which is supposed to include the hotfix that resolves the issue of Win2003 not recognizing sectors over 1.1TB, a server install with a 1.5TB drive ended up with 390GB "bad sectors" acc. to chkdsk, and one with a 2TB drive had 930GB of "bad sectors."  Installing with a 500GB drive as the system drive...so far no problems.  It sounds like SATA AHCI works, but WHS doesn't natively support AHCI format so it CAN make installs and reinstalls tricky (getting there by slipstreaming my drivers into a new WHS install disc, but losing my motivation and moving on to other things).  So I'm happy again (so far) and playing with Vail as my next install option.  Cheers.

    • Marked as answer by Bardmaster Thursday, November 18, 2010 6:15 AM
    Thursday, November 18, 2010 6:15 AM

All replies

  • Bad sectors aren't (can't be) duplicated, but if the data on them is readable but corrupted, that data can be.

    It's possible that you have a hardware issue of some sort other than failing drives which is resulting in the appearance of failing drives anyway. Or, if you ran chkdsk with the /r parameter, it will have repaired and locked out the bad sectors, which means that other tools would no longer find them (once a sector is marked bad, it's assumed bad and ignored in further testing).


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Sunday, April 18, 2010 12:05 PM
    Moderator
  • What other hardware issue, something with the mobo's SATA bus, perhaps?  The mobo IS an ECS, I must admit...junkiest of motherboards...but it has always worked fine for me.  And like said I was running an XP-based media server for over a year prior on this same h/w platform (in fact more like 2+) with all the SATA buses in use (with different, smaller HDD's) and nary an issue.

    It just seems bizarre that chkdsk would have found and marked as bad virtually the same amount of sectors on the Hitachi as the WD.  And both are using the same SATA bus but of course on different ports.  Even if DE had duplicated corrupted data from the WD to the Hitachi, chkdsk wouldn't have (shouldn't have) marked the Hitachi sectors as bad...

    The advanced (sector-by-sector) disk scan found no errors either.  I'm going to try again, perhaps after backing up my critical data to an external source.  But this is scary!

    On another note, Ken have you heard of any issues with these "Green" HDD's in WHS?  To conserve power they go to sleep when not in use, but I was under the impression that's the standard modus opperandi for HDD's in WHS anyway.  No issues with WHS having trouble re-awakening the WD Green drive that could be causing some kind of physical damage...?  I know I'm kind of reaching here...this is not being used for the SYS volume, a reliable Seagate 1.5TB Barracuda is.  (I also have a 1TB Maxtor in there too, so quite a mix of brands...)

     

    Sunday, April 18, 2010 6:37 PM
  • What other hardware issue, something with the mobo's SATA bus, perhaps?

    Hi.
    Are you sure chkdsk reported "bad sectors" or just data errors. The first indicates uncorrectable errors on disk sectors that can not be read or written to.

    Concerning harware issues. The first that comes to mind is a troublesome or overstressed power supply. A bad power supply can introduce data errors, bad sectors or even drive failure.

     

    ... any issues with these "Green" HDD's in WHS?

    I have been using several WD Greens in both my WHS Servers for pool storage and/or USB-Connected drive backing up shared folders. No problems at all.

    Just do not use them as a USB connected drive in the storage pool. (I was told) USB connected drives in the pool give problems with disks going into power-down mode. You can use a USB connected WD Green drive safely for backing up WHS however.

    - Theo


    No home server like Home Server
    Sunday, April 18, 2010 9:35 PM
    Moderator
  • Hi Theo - yes I printed out the chkdsk results and it clearly shows "368104956 KB in bad sectors" when I ran it vs. the Hitachi 2GB drive.  These mysteriously disappeared after a reformat and chkdsk from a different computer - and again the aforementioned Hitachi HDD tester (self-booting CD) showed no errors after a comprehensive sector-by-sector test.

    The WD 1.5GB showed 391,386,164  KB in bad sectors.  These were re-marked as bad after a reformat and chksk from a different computer.  And WD confirmed the drive had bad sectors and sent me a replacement.

    Thanks for the tip on the power supply - I did notice that I had 2 of these big drives daisy-chained on the same cord.  When I reinstalled the 2GB I switched it to a cord only used by the system fans, which hopefully will help distribute the power more evenly (presumably).  I am running a 350W Ultra "V-Series" power supply which may be a bit suspect, since I've got 4 huge HDD's in this server - 1 2TB, 2 1.5TB and 1 1TB.  I originally had fewer and smaller drives in the rig, and also figured there was little power consumption elsewhere as everything but the PCI ethernet card is on the motherboard, including simple video, and the sound is disabled.  But perhaps it is time for an upgrade here.

     

    Monday, April 19, 2010 7:40 PM
  • The story continues here, in a thread I somewhat hijacked from another Brad...

    http://social.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/whshardware/thread/2e4896b9-d7be-41c4-ad5b-a39eac14867c

     

    Sunday, July 11, 2010 8:07 AM
  • To "wrap" this up, although there never was an official answer, I am concluding that my bad sector issue was the "ghost bad sectors" issue with Win2003 server and HDD's >1TB when using IDE mode.  Even though the version of WHS I installed had SP2, which is supposed to include the hotfix that resolves the issue of Win2003 not recognizing sectors over 1.1TB, a server install with a 1.5TB drive ended up with 390GB "bad sectors" acc. to chkdsk, and one with a 2TB drive had 930GB of "bad sectors."  Installing with a 500GB drive as the system drive...so far no problems.  It sounds like SATA AHCI works, but WHS doesn't natively support AHCI format so it CAN make installs and reinstalls tricky (getting there by slipstreaming my drivers into a new WHS install disc, but losing my motivation and moving on to other things).  So I'm happy again (so far) and playing with Vail as my next install option.  Cheers.

    • Marked as answer by Bardmaster Thursday, November 18, 2010 6:15 AM
    Thursday, November 18, 2010 6:15 AM