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WHS Shows the hdd location as unknown RRS feed

  • Question

  • I recently purchased a couple of PCI SATA cards to use in my home server, as my motherboard doesnt have any SATA ports, the motherboard is a skt 478 with a celeron 1.7GHZ and 512mb RAM, so I manged to get the SATA cards installed usning Windows Server 2003 drivers. The Problems come when i connect HDDs to the cards, and cards 1 and  2 the pc doesnt boot and with card 3 the pc does boot I think this is because it is a different SATA card (previous Purchase) and I can hot plug the drive when windows has booted, but shows the drives location as unknown, so what will happen if I add the drive, will the computer boot or will it not. I know device manager recognises the cards and the hdds.


    Well a small update I added the 500gb SATA Hdd to the storage pool using the SATA PCI card, and it worked, but its still showing the location as unknown will this cause problems later if I try to remove a drive?


    I dont get it though as the hdd shows up in device manager as a scsi device, so why does the console show it as unknown is this a bug and should I be worried?
    HMG
    Friday, June 26, 2009 1:48 PM

Answers

  • I recently purchased a couple of PCI SATA cards to use in my home server, as my motherboard doesnt have any SATA ports, the motherboard is a skt 478 with a celeron 1.7GHZ and 512mb RAM, so I manged to get the SATA cards installed usning Windows Server 2003 drivers. The Problems come when i connect HDDs to the cards, and cards 1 and  2 the pc doesnt boot and with card 3 the pc does boot I think this is because it is a different SATA card (previous Purchase) and I can hot plug the drive when windows has booted, but shows the drives location as unknown, so what will happen if I add the drive, will the computer boot or will it not. I know device manager recognises the cards and the hdds.


    Well a small update I added the 500gb SATA Hdd to the storage pool using the SATA PCI card, and it worked, but its still showing the location as unknown will this cause problems later if I try to remove a drive?


    I dont get it though as the hdd shows up in device manager as a scsi device, so why does the console show it as unknown is this a bug and should I be worried?
    HMG

    I have a SATA drive in my server as well (and have had it for some time) and it also says "unknown", yet it still works.  I wouldn't worry about it. :)
    Saturday, June 27, 2009 1:02 AM
    Moderator
  • ... WD's RE edtion and Seagate ES range, ...
    Note that Western Digital is very specific that their RE drive line is not to be used outside an enterprise RAID environment. The "RAID Edition" drives have comparatively short timeout intervals when problems are encountered. This is called Time Limited Error Recovery, or TLER, by WD. This behavior is appropriate in a RAID environment where the RAID controller can deal with the error that is returned. In a single drive environment (and Windows Home Server is a single drive environment, because every drive stands alone) this will eventually result in a drive appearing to fail when it's actually fine. This white paper on the Western Digital site describes TLER in a bit more detail.

    Other drive manufacturers have similar lines with similar technology, so it seems likely that they have the same caveats.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Sunday, June 28, 2009 12:59 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Come on someone must have some idea
    HMG
    Friday, June 26, 2009 5:33 PM
  • Well you've not given people any time to respond - this isn't a chatroom :)

    I have not seen this issue, but what WHS component versions (from your WHS Console) are you using?
    Do you have a screenshot?
    Friday, June 26, 2009 5:48 PM
  • well I am sorry, but you dont need to be so rude about it

    here are the screenshots for all

    http://i262.photobucket.com/albums/ii89/demon148/Untitled-2.jpg
    http://i262.photobucket.com/albums/ii89/demon148/Untitled2.jpg

    one will show a pic of what version of WHS I am using which is PP2 and the 2nd will show the hdd location as unknown also I had popped out for a while leaving my server on and when I came back the hdd that is unknown was missing until I restarted the server.
    HMG
    Friday, June 26, 2009 9:25 PM
  • I recently purchased a couple of PCI SATA cards to use in my home server, as my motherboard doesnt have any SATA ports, the motherboard is a skt 478 with a celeron 1.7GHZ and 512mb RAM, so I manged to get the SATA cards installed usning Windows Server 2003 drivers. The Problems come when i connect HDDs to the cards, and cards 1 and  2 the pc doesnt boot and with card 3 the pc does boot I think this is because it is a different SATA card (previous Purchase) and I can hot plug the drive when windows has booted, but shows the drives location as unknown, so what will happen if I add the drive, will the computer boot or will it not. I know device manager recognises the cards and the hdds.


    Well a small update I added the 500gb SATA Hdd to the storage pool using the SATA PCI card, and it worked, but its still showing the location as unknown will this cause problems later if I try to remove a drive?


    I dont get it though as the hdd shows up in device manager as a scsi device, so why does the console show it as unknown is this a bug and should I be worried?
    HMG

    I have a SATA drive in my server as well (and have had it for some time) and it also says "unknown", yet it still works.  I wouldn't worry about it. :)
    Saturday, June 27, 2009 1:02 AM
    Moderator
  • my last post mentioned, that I went out for a while and came back and the drive was missing
    HMG
    Saturday, June 27, 2009 7:40 AM
  • my last post mentioned, that I went out for a while and came back and the drive was missing
    HMG

    You might be having an issue with the drive (or the power or data cabling for the drive).
    Saturday, June 27, 2009 2:10 PM
    Moderator
  • I think it's due to the sata timing, the controller and disk talk to each other sending keep alives etc. Not all disks are made equal and some can drop offline. A reboot often sorts it out. I've had similar problems. Desktop sata disks aren't certified for 24x7 use but most chugg along quite happily.

    I know of 2 makes that are certified, WD's RE edtion and Seagate ES range, there may be others. I believe that the WHS dsik subsystem ie demigrator, extender etc are written to a tight set of specifications and the odd disk falls outside these.

    I've hopefully cured my issues by reducing the disk count per controller, so i have 2 on the mobo and 2 on an add in card. I haven't had a disk drop offline for a few months now.
    Saturday, June 27, 2009 8:33 PM
  • well I am not 100% sure but I think it may be the motherboard, because after I got everything of it I did a complete re-installment using the wife motherboard and it worked fine, the console picked it up as a scsi drive. so I am going to try it again on the other notherboard as I dont want to use the wifes PC for it. I have some new drivers to try
    HMG
    Sunday, June 28, 2009 10:05 AM
  • ... WD's RE edtion and Seagate ES range, ...
    Note that Western Digital is very specific that their RE drive line is not to be used outside an enterprise RAID environment. The "RAID Edition" drives have comparatively short timeout intervals when problems are encountered. This is called Time Limited Error Recovery, or TLER, by WD. This behavior is appropriate in a RAID environment where the RAID controller can deal with the error that is returned. In a single drive environment (and Windows Home Server is a single drive environment, because every drive stands alone) this will eventually result in a drive appearing to fail when it's actually fine. This white paper on the Western Digital site describes TLER in a bit more detail.

    Other drive manufacturers have similar lines with similar technology, so it seems likely that they have the same caveats.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Sunday, June 28, 2009 12:59 PM
    Moderator
  • Well I think I may have got it now not sure, so please dont close this post yet. But I think I may have installed the wrong driver on the first installation instead of the Windows 2003 ones.
    HMG
    Sunday, June 28, 2009 1:43 PM
  • ok now have a new problem, WHS wont format the hdds and add them to the storage pool, I have successfully got Win2003 drivers for the SATA cards and WHS is recognising the HDDS as SCSI internally. But wont add them.
    HMG
    Monday, June 29, 2009 9:25 AM
  • Anyone


    HMG
    Monday, June 29, 2009 8:21 PM
  • There is a FAQ which may be of some help.
    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Monday, June 29, 2009 8:31 PM
    Moderator
  • OK So now I cannot use this hardware for the server I think its the motherboard causing the problem, imperial pile of S**t its from an emachines 270. I managed to get 2 500 sata drives added to the storage pool along side the 500gb IDE drive when not long after that the server wouldnt boot, I have been at it all day trying to get the drives working again, in the end I had to pull the sata cables out till I had typed in the password and then quickly connected them back up. So now I have to get all my files off before I find another computer to use.
    HMG
    Tuesday, June 30, 2009 10:56 PM
  • Not Sure if I should risk it and keep trying it on this hardware.
    HMG
    Wednesday, July 1, 2009 7:47 AM
  • Anyone got any ideas, has anyone else had problems with SATA cards on SATALESS motherboards or is it just my hardware?
    HMG
    Thursday, July 2, 2009 7:38 AM
  • I am thinking it's "just your hardware". I don't happen to have a server with the storage configuration you describe, but there are undoubtedly plenty of people here who do, and they don't seem to be having the issues you do.

    If you don't enjoy the challenge of sorting this type of issue out, you might want to consider a product from an OEM such as Acer or HP. The hardware is well-built, and these sorts of issues should have bene sorted out long before they release the product in the marketplace.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Thursday, July 2, 2009 3:03 PM
    Moderator
  • I built a previous Home Server whic I didnt really have a problem with, unfortuantly I had to sell the parts. I have a old PC not getting used so I thought strapping a couple of cards and HDDs in and it would be raring to go. As for a manufacture buy, I dont really have the money for it. Plus I like building systems, its fun.
    HMG
    Thursday, July 2, 2009 4:26 PM
  • I built a previous Home Server whic I didnt really have a problem with, unfortuantly I had to sell the parts. I have a old PC not getting used so I thought strapping a couple of cards and HDDs in and it would be raring to go. As for a manufacture buy, I dont really have the money for it. Plus I like building systems, its fun.
    Building systems is fun, yes. :) I build all my own desktops, for example. When things go poorly, though, it has the potential to be frustrating, and doubly so in the case of a product like Windows Home Server, which frankly isn't designed to be installed by an end user.

    And there's an "opportunity cost" involved, as well; you could be doing something even more fun, or something that pays the bills. Just a couple of hours of sorting out a subtle hardware issue can easily take a home built server that's less expensive than an HP MediaSmart Server, and turn it into something that costs significantly more for the same functionality. that opportunity cost is why my main production server is an HP; I want something that "just works" that I don't have to fiddle with. (Then there's the test/dev server, the other servers I run in VMs for more destructive testing, etc...)

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Thursday, July 2, 2009 4:49 PM
    Moderator
  • Truth be told I like fiddiling, plus i dont mind the odd fustration, just that this one is a little different, The last Home Server I had, ran perfect except fot the fact it didnt like tversity and caused problems when it was installed. The last motherboard had SATA ports onboard, so therefor I didnt really have a problem, had it running for over 9 months without incident, I was gutted when I had to sell it. I dint think I would have much of a problem when I bought the addin cards for this Home Server. Or is it because the hardware is old? The thing is I dont have a problem with one PATA and one SATA (Connected to SATA PCI Card, its when I add more and move things around.
    HMG
    Thursday, July 2, 2009 6:38 PM
  • Right I have 3 500gb HDD's in now. My Main OS Drive 500gb IDE and 1x500gb SATA drive on one SATA Card and the last 500gb SATA Drive on another SATA Card. and so far they are working, modding another case to try and put them in there, not sure if the board likes to be moves but its going to have to as the one the board is in is an old desktop case so not really any cooling. So the new one should work.
    HMG
    Friday, July 3, 2009 11:40 AM
  • Truth be told I like fiddiling, plus i dont mind the odd fustration, just that this one is a little different, The last Home Server I had, ran perfect except fot the fact it didnt like tversity and caused problems when it was installed. The last motherboard had SATA ports onboard, so therefor I didnt really have a problem, had it running for over 9 months without incident, I was gutted when I had to sell it. I dint think I would have much of a problem when I bought the addin cards for this Home Server. Or is it because the hardware is old? The thing is I dont have a problem with one PATA and one SATA (Connected to SATA PCI Card, its when I add more and move things around.
    HMG

    My guess would be some part of your old hardware.  I made that mistake during the WHS beta (fortunately I had everything backed up anyways because it was beta).  When WHS was released, I dumped the "recycled PC" idea and got all new hardware instead (except for one hard drive).  Mine's been flying 24/7 for almost 2 years now. :)
    Friday, July 3, 2009 12:30 PM
    Moderator
  • well I am happy to try and get it to work not all of the data is backed up as there is too much, but I am doing the best I can.

    Touching wood, so far so good chaneged the case over to one with adequet cooling and I have tidied the wires up so airflow is good also 3 500gb drives are in 1 IDE and 2 sata and so far Console picks them up as scsi and they are added and giving me the right amount of space.
    HMG
    • Proposed as answer by OzBrown Saturday, July 4, 2009 7:44 AM
    Friday, July 3, 2009 7:55 PM
  • A point to note with WHS is that the basic install is based on Windows Server 2003 and does not support some motherboards that Windows XP or Windows Vista may support. This is through the drivers supplied within Windows Server 2003 do not support all the Motherboards (we) use for general PC's. If you watch the WHS install you will see it installs Windows Server 2003 (Small Business Server version) then overlays WHS components. If the motherboard requires drivers for the chipsets on the motherboard to enable access to devices beyond then these will need to be loaded once WHS is installed.

     

    This is the same process for Windows XP or Vista, even though XP or Vista provide basic chipset support or drivers to see the Hardware or device within a PC install. This is highlighted within the Device manager by a yellow “?” mark(s) till the correct device driver(s) are loaded.

     

    The point to note is if you are going to build your own WHS check that the motherboard can be used for Windows Server 2003 – Small Business Server. This will enable all devices to be seen by WHS at install and then load additional drivers to give full/enhanced operation of the device. This is more relevant with the new generation Motherboards produced over the last year or older Desktop motherboards which Windows Server 2003 do not know about Sata Drive chipsets........

     

    Best of luck……..


    IT professional looking for the perfect Home System & Server......
    Saturday, July 4, 2009 7:45 AM
  • Just to note to everyone who reads this post and I do apologise if its rude, but I did say that I had install WHS succesfully on a IDE 500GB hdd, the only driver that needed to be installed on WHS was the sound card. The problem is nothing to do with the motherboard or the chipset or the ram or even the HDD. Its to do with the SATA Cards that my sata hdds are connected to as they are the only ones that go missing etc. The drivers installed for the 3 SATA cards are infact Windows 2003 drivers not xp.
    HMG
    Saturday, July 4, 2009 10:43 AM
  • Right got 4 500gb HDDs in now one IDE and 3 SATA, 1 SATA drive on each of the 3 add in cards. and got them up saying 1.82tb. so far its working the way it should, this will have to do until I can get everything backed up and new hardware. I will keep you poseted when I put the last of the drives in. Does anyone know if you can mix IDE and SATA on the addin cards.
    HMG
    Saturday, July 4, 2009 1:10 PM
  • Right got 4 500gb HDDs in now one IDE and 3 SATA, 1 SATA drive on each of the 3 add in cards. and got them up saying 1.82tb. so far its working the way it should, this will have to do until I can get everything backed up and new hardware. I will keep you poseted when I put the last of the drives in. Does anyone know if you can mix IDE and SATA on the addin cards.
    HMG

    It should work (as long as you have the correct drivers for it).
    Saturday, July 4, 2009 1:50 PM
    Moderator
  • well the Sata addin cards have been installed with Server 2003 drivers from the cd. I have a few IDE drives I want to use as backup instead of storage.
    HMG
    Saturday, July 4, 2009 2:14 PM