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WHS Console & Transfers Slow/Sluggish/Lag RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi guys, 

    I built a PC for WHS to store all our photos. Dual-core AMD Athlon II x2. 4x1.5TB drives, 1x250GB System drive, 2GB RAM, 450 Watt PSU. 

    Right now I have 3.6TB used out of the 5.8TB available, folder duplication is on. I don't use the WHS to backup any computers, just to store files. Remote Access is turned off. It is up to date. 64% of the 4 internal drives are used.

    Initially the system was very snappy. But recently it has become very sluggish. The only plug-in I have is Disk Management, so I can keep an eye on the drive temperatures. I tried uninstalling this plug-in, no performance increase. I ran Core Temp for awhile on the system, to make sure the CPU wasn't running hot. It wasn't (30-36C). The Home Server Console runs incredibly slow... maybe 10 seconds after I click it performs. The CPU load while it is balancing storage is about 30-50% per core, drive activity is reasonable (less than 1000 KB/s activity normally).  Drive temps are all between 30-40C.

    Is there any reason why the WHS Console would be so slow? It also lags during transferring files, pausing for maybe 10-15 seconds then continues to transfer the files. Any advice? I'm not sure if there is any maintenance I'm supposed to be running. I also shut down the server every night if that helps.

     

    Thanks,

    Steve

    Friday, March 26, 2010 7:32 PM

Answers

  • The problem has been resolved. I believe the issue was either a corrupted WHS installation (trial upgraded to full version) or a failing system drive. Either way, I replaced the system drive and did a clean install. Server runs fine now.
    Monday, April 19, 2010 7:25 PM

All replies

  • Hi Steve

    I would start with running chkdsk on the server, just to see that nothing is wrong with the drives.

    There's a great guide posted by Ken how to do this. You can find the guide here: http://social.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/whsfaq/thread/b5372407-1f24-4eff-9092-069c4b4f0cee

    Friday, March 26, 2010 7:37 PM
  • I'm going to run this now. Will post results.
    Friday, March 26, 2010 7:43 PM
  • It helps to leave the server on the whole time - the server will do it's own maintenance but that usually occurs at midnight.  That's why a lot of people go for a low powered solution.

    Don't have a RealTek network card in there by any chance do you?  Also the 4 1.5TB Drives are they Low Power devices?
    --
    Friday, March 26, 2010 9:32 PM
  • Hi Al,

    I don't leave the server on the whole time because it is unnecessary for our use. I understand the server does need time during idle when it performs system maintenance (Sundays, right?), so I try to make sure it is on during those times, but it sits idle for most of the time and I try to turn everything off at night to save power.

    Realtek 8111C is integrated into the motherboard. The 1.5TB drives are Western Digital Caviar Green WD15EADS 1.5TB drives. 

    The troubling issue is I can understand if it was slow/sluggish from the get-go, but I have had it running for 4 months on the Beta/Trial with no problems. Then I upgraded to the full-version and it started fine, then started getting sluggish.

     

    Thanks,
    Steve

    Friday, March 26, 2010 9:42 PM
  • Realtek drivers have been known to cause problems which with a Windows Update may explan why it was okay for a while and then slow.  You might want to look at that too.
    --
    Saturday, March 27, 2010 1:27 AM
  • Al, thanks, I'll look into that. 

    I finished running the chkdsk and it rebooted. No errors reported in the event viewer (other than 1 performance error that said writing something took an abnormally long amount of time). Seems to be running slightly quicker.

    Any other ideas?

    Saturday, March 27, 2010 4:32 AM
  • I just checked and all my storage drives are showing 87% used. Any idea why the chkdsk would cause this?? In Server Storage it is showing 1.3TB for System. Do I need to run a maintenance cleaning or something?

     

    Update:

    I have reduced the 87% by taking off Folder Duplication. But I still have 1.3TB of "System" files somewhere... I have no idea how to find these files or how to delete them, but they appeared after I ran chkdsk (as suggested earlier). Should I run it again?

    Saturday, March 27, 2010 4:46 AM
  • Another update:

    Tried to eject a drive. No dice. Checked the event viewer and now I have a bunch of errors, all the same:

     

    Source: ESENT

    Category: Database Corruption

    Event: 447

     

    Does this mean my system drive is failing or that the WHS OS is corrupt??

    Monday, March 29, 2010 5:27 PM
  • If you are able to copy the photos and other important data to any other computer, I would reccomend that you do so just to make sure you have a backup just in case something goes wrong.

    As you don't have any important client backups, I suppose you could try to repair the database (Console -> Settings -> Backup). To completely wipe the backup database, remove the computers from the Computers & Backup tap, and in the setting perform the Backup Cleanup to remove all old backups.

    However, I noticed that your system space increased after running chkdsk. This is not normal, and I'm unfortunatelly not experienced enough with whs myself to draw any conclusions what could have caused this. Hopefully someone else in this forum will be able to assist you with this one.

    Tuesday, March 30, 2010 11:49 AM
  • Are you storing files outside of the d:\shares?  Looks like your system drive is completely full which would make for a sluggish home server.  Have you added your own shares outside of the Windows Home Server console?


    --
    Tuesday, March 30, 2010 12:19 PM
  • If you are able to copy the photos and other important data to any other computer, I would reccomend that you do so just to make sure you have a backup just in case something goes wrong.

    As you don't have any important client backups, I suppose you could try to repair the database (Console -> Settings -> Backup). To completely wipe the backup database, remove the computers from the Computers & Backup tap, and in the setting perform the Backup Cleanup to remove all old backups.

    However, I noticed that your system space increased after running chkdsk. This is not normal, and I'm unfortunatelly not experienced enough with whs myself to draw any conclusions what could have caused this. Hopefully someone else in this forum will be able to assist you with this one.

    I've tried resetting the backup databases. No dice. Took 1/2 second. I don't back up any computers on the the WHS, just images and videos.

     

    Oddly enough, with the 1.3TB of "System" storage, once I disabled duplication on a folder with a lot of images, let it slowly delete the duplication, then re-enabled duplication, that part went away. But the system is so slow at this point, it is hard to tell what is going on.

    Tuesday, March 30, 2010 7:12 PM
  • Are you storing files outside of the d:\shares?  Looks like your system drive is completely full which would make for a sluggish home server.  Have you added your own shares outside of the Windows Home Server console?


    --

    No files are outside the d:/shares (there are some, but they take up 8.0kb or something tiny like that).

    System drive is not full at all. All the storage drives are registering as full, but the system drive is 8% (250GB drive). 

    Not added any shares outside of the WHS console.

     

    I suspect it might be the system drive failing. It is the only old piece of hardware in the machine and it was added during the upgrade from the 120 day trial and the actual purchase. I suspect that the drive is failing. I was able to look at my storage drives the other day (before the system got too slow to operate) and it looks like all my files are still interspersed throughout the storage drives. So I'm not worried about that (I have duplicates on externals, but I've spent time organizing the files on the WHS (centralization is why I decided on it in the first place)... so I'd rather not lose that. 

    I have ordered a replacement (weird how 250GB-320GB HDs are $50, and 1.5TBs are $100... doesn't make sense to not put a 1.5TB in the system drive, does seem to be a waste of space, since WHS doesn't use the system drive for storage from what I've heard). I will report back when I know something. I'm just going to let the WHS still off until I get the drive, since it took an hour to shutdown yesterday and the hard drive activity light has been on nonstop for 2 days.

    Tuesday, March 30, 2010 7:18 PM
  • I suspect it might be the system drive failing. It is the only old piece of hardware in the machine and it was added during the upgrade from the 120 day trial and the actual purchase. I suspect that the drive is failing. I was able to look at my storage drives the other day (before the system got too slow to operate) and it looks like all my files are still interspersed throughout the storage drives. So I'm not worried about that (I have duplicates on externals, but I've spent time organizing the files on the WHS (centralization is why I decided on it in the first place)... so I'd rather not lose that. 

    I have ordered a replacement (weird how 250GB-320GB HDs are $50, and 1.5TBs are $100... doesn't make sense to not put a 1.5TB in the system drive, does seem to be a waste of space, since WHS doesn't use the system drive for storage from what I've heard). 

    It does use the primary drive for storage, it just does it last (when there is nowhere else to put the data).

    I will report back when I know something. I'm just going to let the WHS still off until I get the drive, since it took an hour to shutdown yesterday and the hard drive activity light has been on nonstop for 2 days.


    Thursday, April 1, 2010 1:53 AM
    Moderator
  • Hi Kariya,

    I'm aware it does use the drive, and right now, it is using the Primary drive for storage (since it wouldn't let me re-install WHS, I had to do a new installation). I'm slowly copying my storage drives onto the WHS, then adding them to the DE pool once the data is copied. I'm about 50% done and so far no problems.

    At this point I do not know if it was the system drive or a corrupt WHS installation or both, since I had to do a new reinstall of WHS and it has a new System Drive. But so far it seems to be very quick and working well.

    Once I've gotten all the drives copied over and back into the DE pool, I'll post a follow-up to confirm that the issue is resolved.

    Thursday, April 1, 2010 4:52 AM
  • The problem has been resolved. I believe the issue was either a corrupted WHS installation (trial upgraded to full version) or a failing system drive. Either way, I replaced the system drive and did a clean install. Server runs fine now.
    Monday, April 19, 2010 7:25 PM