WHS seems to be "Balancing Storage" all the time RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello I have had my WHS for about 3 weeks now and all seems fine.

    Untill the last couple of days or so when I have noticed it is always "Balancing Storage" which seems to be affecting is performance.

    It there any this I can do to make it do this in the night in stead of all day?


    Please help as this is starting to stop my enjoyment of it use. thanks.



    Saturday, January 5, 2008 5:17 PM

All replies

  • Do you have any SATA hard drives in your computer?  If so what controller do you have?  I had the same issue with the Silicon Image 3112 and 3114.  Drivers from the manufacturer worked but always getting balancing storage.  I was able to download hardware updates from Windows update that fixed the issue for me.



    Saturday, January 5, 2008 5:33 PM
  • Hello and thanks for trying

    I installed WHS on a PC that was about 1.5 years old (So I new it was stable) abd it has 3 ATA drive on it a 300 gb and 2 500 gb IDE drives


    But you have given me a idea of try to find mother board drives that may inprove things.


    Do you know if the schedual backup affects the "Balancing" at all?


    Thanks once again


    Saturday, January 5, 2008 5:51 PM
  • My understanding of balancing was any data that is copied to your WHS storage pool goes onto your primary drive first then moves the data onto the other drives that are part of the storage pool.  If your currently doing a backup, it will copy the data to the d: drive of WHS then move them into the pool and will "balance" during this period.


    If they are just scheduled and not actively backing up then it shouldn't be balancing for a long period of time unless a lot of information has changed on the system you are backing up.


    Check windows update for hardware updates.  I don't have any ATA drives in my server so I haven't had to play with that.







    Saturday, January 5, 2008 8:06 PM

    mine dose balancing storage a couple times a hour. but only lasts a few minutes.
    Monday, January 7, 2008 9:43 PM
  • There have been a few threads on this topic so far. One in particular covered it pretty thuroughly with Marc Moon giving some explaination as to all the tasks that fall under Demigrator.exe's ruling. Basically, Demigrator could be balancing and/or several other duties too and still show up as "balancing" in console. 

    This thread has hundreds of posts, but the final entry on the final page gives a summary of Demigrator's many jobs that can pose as "balancing." Read thread here: Still Balancing

    Not to sound negative, but there was no real resolution to the issue of constant balancing, HD activity and CPU usage. (There is currently no way to adjust Demigrator's priority or set schedules.)  I say this only because it seems tha Demigrator never stops doing any of it's many jobs and seems to tax my HD's and CPU 24/7.   This has to increase power consumption and wear on my drives. I could see if I was frequently adding data to the server, but I've not added anything in 3 weeks. My Hard drives have been buzzing 24/7 for three months now. Except for the noise, I've had no performance issues.  When I serve a large AVI file to my first Gen Xbox, Task Manager shows Demigrator reduces it's CPU usage from 90% to 1%-2% as it is designed to do.... So, I'm cool with that.  Though some have experienced performance sluggishness and streaming issues.

    So, before you go too crazy buying Mobo's and yanking drives..read the thread. There maybe something in there that applies to your problems. Then again, this all seems to be normal.

    As stated, I've seen no performance issues. So I've adjusted and live with the contant activity. I guess many may be making a big deal out of the constant buzzing of their HD's. Traditional thinking would stand that something must be wrong in WHS-ville...Well, maybe there isn't after all.  It's normal activity for this new territory called Windows Home Server.

    Hope this helps.....
    Thursday, January 10, 2008 2:29 AM
  • Let me start by saying I am an HP employee.  I have almost all HP computer products, but I am very unhappy with this experience.  I have been to the Consumer Electronics Show each of the past 5 years, and this is the first year that I felt compelled to order something the DAY after I returned home.  It was the HP EX470 MediaSmart Home Server.


    In short, my extreme dissatisfaction lies with two events, one a singular one and the other ongoing.


    #1 - It corrupted my PASSWORD FILE.  In the process of retiring and old laptop to move to a new one, I COPIED all of my data to the server.  After the copy was finished, I checked critical files (the most critical of which was my password file).  Of all files, I had to be sure that my password file was secure.  I then turned on folder duplication to be sure that it would be doubly backed-up.  After "balancing" was complete, I knew that the duplication was done, so I formatted my old laptop harddrive so that no one getting it could get any of my files.  A few days later, I discovered that the file was corrupted.  Wonderful - hundreds of passwords, lost forever, and the very reason I put them on the HP EX470 was to PROTECT THEM!


    #2 - The constant rebalancing.  I talked to tech support at HP tonight.  The first thing they said was that Microsoft acknowledged the potential for corrupted files.  That did me no good when it was a) not fixed before launch, when it was known in April, b) not mentioned in the manual by HP, and c) not loaded automatically as an update upon my first boot of the system.  Anyway, the rep said that there would be an Operating System Update from Microsoft in the February timeframe.  I just don't know if I want my HDD's to spin constantly, eroding their useful life by half or more in the meantime.


    Finally, I have read the blog entries about replacing the RAM with 2GB fixing the constant balancing problem.  I did not buy this thing to eat my passwords and then force me to spend another $70 and an afternoon turning it into a skeleton and back.


    This was terribly executed and supported by HP.  Don't buy the EX470 or EX475 until the confirmed fix is out by Microsoft.

    Wednesday, January 30, 2008 2:31 AM
  • AdaDude,

    Well, given the HUGE amount of comments on this WHS forum regarding balancing and corruption, everyone is aware of the problem.  Well, most are. You didn't read any of the forum threads?  Working for HP , you did not hear about these topics concerning your company's product line? 

    Please read some of the posts here on the forum and the HP/MS Knowledge Base articles.  It's not as bad as the competiton wants to make it out to be.

    Wednesday, January 30, 2008 4:09 AM
  • I guess I had more faith that an OS based on another OS that has been out since 2003 would at least be stable enough that it would not EAT my data.  Second, no, I did not come and read all these threads on the forum because I did not come here until I started experiencing issues with the server I bought.  I think it is unreasonable to imply that I should have investigated in this way before buying the product.  There is a certain expectation that something should be READY before it is launched.


    I don't know what competition you are referring to in your winks about my employer.  My point in mentioning that I work for HP is that I am NOT out to tar and feather them, but this launch was inexcusable.  I'm not a mac guy.  I know Steve Jobs talked about some kind of "time capsule" or some such backup device, but I don't know the first detail of it.


    So, believe me when I say it IS as bad as I am experiencing it to be.  Constant spindle activity when there is no change in the data on the server makes for much shorter life of each HDD.  CORRUPTION of data is intolerable.  It does not get much worse than that.


    My post was simply to inform anyone else experiencing the same issues to know what the HP support person told me - that an update is due in Feb.

    Wednesday, January 30, 2008 1:20 PM
  • Adadude,

    You never said whether you added more RAM.  I understand your disappointment but you need to do what you need to do now.  The HP comes with "only" 512 Megs ram.  That really is not much for an XP or 2K3 OS.  If I were you I would add memory to your machine and see if it helps. 

    I built my own machine, and it is waaay upscale, so I cannot comment about the effects of adding memory to that model of machine, but I can comment in general that XP and 2K3 run better with more memory.  You might well get by with only 1 gig, but as cheap as memory is I would go to at LEAST 2 gigs, and perhaps 4. 

    Better to cry at the cost and be happy with the performance than cry at the cost and be unhappy with the performance.
    Wednesday, January 30, 2008 6:17 PM
  •  judgeschambers wrote:

    <snip>You didn't read any of the forum threads?  Working for HP , you did not hear about these topics concerning your company's product line? 

    I have to agree with AdaDude that is a pretty silly thing to say.  HP is like GM, just because you work there doesn't mean you know anything at all about another division.  And I also never even knew these forums existed until I came looking for them.

    Wednesday, January 30, 2008 6:21 PM
  • John, the HP MediaSmart Server has a single DIMM socket, and will accept a maximum of 1x 2 GB DDR2 DIMM.
    Wednesday, January 30, 2008 6:45 PM
  • John,


    No, I did not say, but I have not done this.  I was upset enough at losing all my passwords that I could not picture myself taking this thing apart down to its core (have you seen the pictures??) to upgrade the RAM.  Not that I have not considered it. If someone else could tell me from experience that the EX470/475 resolved the constant balancing issue with an upgrade to 2GB of RAM, I would probably do it tomorrow, but then that still leaves the potential file corruption issue.  I assume that is related to the constant balancing, however, which would reduce its liklihood.  I'm just not sure I want to take this step, although it is probably no more work than shipping this back to HP (I got an RMA this morning) for full credit and the re-purchasing it after MS fixes the issues.


    Does anyone else reading this have a story to tell about upgrading from 512MB in the HP EX470 or HP EX475 MediaSmart Server?  Any input would be appreciated.


    Realizing how cheap memory is now, I too was suprised that HP only put 512MB in this machine.


    Thanks for your comments, John.


    Thursday, January 31, 2008 2:07 AM

    Does anyone else reading this have a story to tell about upgrading from 512MB in the HP EX470 or HP EX475 MediaSmart Server?  Any input would be appreciated.


    I have an EX475 (about 3 weeks now).  I bought 2GB of memory from newegg.com for $49. ($20 mail in rebate - net $29). I bought it because the price was so good. I have not installed it yet. I have been told it will invalidate my HP warranty.


    I have had 2 reports of a drive failing. In checking the event logs at the times of the warnings I have noticed an error with VolSnap not creating a snapshot because of low system memory (and an associated event in the Application Event Log from chkDsk: "Chkdsk was executed in read-only mode. A volume snapshot was not used. Extra errors and warnings may be reported as the volume may have changed during the chkdsk run."


    I really think the drive failure warnings are coming from this situation. The first time, I ran a repair to resolve the problem and it took quite awhile. The 2nd time it happened, I merely restarted the server and everything came up green. 


    I think HP was pinching their pennies a bit too much in sending this out with a mere 512MB of ram. And prohibiting a memory upgrade seems counterintuitive.


    If I get the drive failing warning again, I'm getting on the horn with HP and in a worst case I'll push to get their blessing to add the additional memory.


    That's my story so far...

    Thursday, January 31, 2008 9:27 PM
  • Adadude,

    Sorry you took my comments so personally, but this topic is a majorly whipped dog here.  And many make the corruption issue a mucho bigger deal than it really is.  Mostly competitors trying to strike frear into the hearts of consumers. Yes, propaganda is used by large businesses for this very reason in forums.  Which kinda bothers me because I love WHS for what it does for my home, family entertainment and data management.

    I too work for a large firm that sells its own products and resells other manufacturers goods.  Being that I work there, I'm aware of the product lines and any issues or praise a particular product has.  Especially one I'm looking to purchase.  I was just surprised that you had not read any materials, surfed forums or run across this topic prior to your purchase.

    I guess some of us are tired of the absolute badgering WHS is getting from posters (many first timers) that post huge doom and gloom articles, claim huge data losses, claim WHS is junk and toss in some pokes and jabs. Ken, Marc and Andrew have done an excellent job of fending off the wolves.  But I guess I'm the guy that's sick of hearing it and I call it like it is.....or seems to be....and I challenge the doom and gloomers an those with overzealous expectations.

    The WHS forum was fun at first, but peeps complaining about what WHS does not have to suit their needs and the doom and gloomers has put a major damper on the party.

    Have fun with WHS and hope you can wait it out until MS/HP issue the fix....

    Friday, February 1, 2008 1:24 AM
  • Adadude,

    I don't think you posted any specifics about your corrupted file. I.E. file type.  Anything at all like that described in the MS KB article?  Becaue that is where the issues have been.

    If not, this single corrupted file might just be an isolated incident from network noise, bad write or something....  JMHO. 
    Friday, February 1, 2008 1:40 AM