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How to identify disk to be removed when all are same model? RRS feed

  • Question

  • My buddy's WHS installation is a home built pc with 4 x 500g identical model SATA disks.  I'm trying to upgrade (2) of the disks with larger 1.5TB disks.  I cleaned up some old backups, turned off file duplication,  executed the drive removal wizard and it has released a disk.  Now how do I correlate the disk that it cleared off with the physical SATA connection to identify the physical disk to be removed?
    Thursday, January 7, 2010 5:55 PM

Answers

  • OEM units are required to have a way of identifying disks, normally via drive lights that change color. For home-built units, you can carefully label disks, or you can use the Disk Management add-in, which will let you build a server wireframe that will help you with identifying disks. Given that you haven't done this yet, you'll have some trial and error to go through. Install the Disk Management add-in, then disconnect disks one at a time to equate the physical disk with the disk in the console.

    It's safe to disconnect a disk; Windows Home Server will complain that there's a missing disk, but as long as you just shut down and reconnect it won't cause any long-term problems.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Thursday, January 7, 2010 6:30 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • OEM units are required to have a way of identifying disks, normally via drive lights that change color. For home-built units, you can carefully label disks, or you can use the Disk Management add-in, which will let you build a server wireframe that will help you with identifying disks. Given that you haven't done this yet, you'll have some trial and error to go through. Install the Disk Management add-in, then disconnect disks one at a time to equate the physical disk with the disk in the console.

    It's safe to disconnect a disk; Windows Home Server will complain that there's a missing disk, but as long as you just shut down and reconnect it won't cause any long-term problems.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Thursday, January 7, 2010 6:30 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks.  I did some initial labelling when I built the server for him but I didn't think to correlate the disk number in WHS with the physical drive as I added them into the server during the build.  Glad to hear that I can pull them one at a time and id them through process of elimination :)    I work with enterprise class servers and storage for my day job, and I know that I can pull and replace disks "hot" in that world, but I have never done it with "desktop" PC's.  Since WHS is built on "win2k3 server", and these are SATA disks, can I pull them with the box up and running, or do I need to shutdown/power off to do this?
    Thursday, January 7, 2010 6:40 PM
  • Safest is to shut the server down to disconnect a disk. Windows Home Server doesn't have built in "hot swap" capacity; it would be added by storage drivers if at all...
    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Thursday, January 7, 2010 9:53 PM
    Moderator
  • I highly recommend the disk management add in, however there might be an easy way of identifying the drives...

    In my case at least on the server storage tab where it has the drives listed, at the end of the model number there is a subset of the drive serial number, but it's slightly off. 

    So for example my actual HD serial number ends in 168077, but in the Server storage tab after the model number it has a number and the last 6 digits are 610877, the numbers are all there, just in the wrong order.   (Note this is only something I've noticed on my rig, and I've never seen this documented anywhere so your mileage may vary, also this only works on internal drives, the ones I have connected via USB only show a model number)  This is the case with all of my internal drives except for the system drive, which has no number. 

    So if you look at the server storage tab and look at the number, then compare those last 6 digits to the drives as you pull them out with the power off you have a pretty good shot at picking the right one.

    Hope that helps.
    Friday, January 8, 2010 12:10 AM
  • The serial number is also shown in the informations the Disk Management add-in can provide. So you can validate with the labels on the disks (not that those are easy to read, while the drives are mounted) and disconnect the proper one.
    Best greetings from Germany
    Olaf
    Friday, January 8, 2010 1:52 PM
    Moderator