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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 6:31 am 
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Hi,

I am having a very hard time finding compatible 512K 2TB disks to go with WHSv1. It is currently populated with WD20EADS (native 512K), ST32000542AS (native 512K), WD20EARS (with jumper setting set for 512K) and as of late ST2000DL003 (which I chose because it advertised Smartalign that's supposed to make it compatible with 512K OS).

I even contacted Seagate support to see if their new disks (for example ST200DM001) are compatible with WS2003. The response I got was negative, they even said that older ST2000DL003 (which I already have installed) are not compatible. The answer about the SmartAlign technology (why it is advertised to make a disk compatible with 512K systems when they now say this is not the case) I didn't get. Their answers were very carefully composed not to include any information about SmartAlign questions I had.

So, now, not any of this disks is available, so I am left finding alternatives. If you don't mind could you please help me in this regard - what (new) 2TB disks are you using?

The ones I am looking at now are:
1. ST200DM001
2. WD20EFRX

Are any of these able to work properly with WHSv1 without any need for additional settings? Do WD drives still support jumper setting for compatibility with legacy OS? This is the only step I am comfortably doing, as all other solutions I read about make use of alignment tools which then make the disk unrecognizable to WHSv1. I am not comfortable doing a long and complicated registry changes that are necessary after alignment.

Please help me by sharing your experiances with new AF disks and WHSv1, or any links to manufacturers information about the use of new disks with legacy OS.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 8:15 am 
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Its been quite some time since I have added drives to my WHS v1 servers but the drives which I was adding back in 2011 were Hitachi Deskstars and WD Blacks. Hitachi in now part of Western Digital.

Now if we look at Western Digital they do have alignment software to align their drives. What I found out about this software if installed on a Win 7 system the software does not properly identify drives as being AF or not. So I installed the software on my WHS v1 server to properly identify AF Drives.

If I had to install a new drive in my WHS v1 server I would go with the WD Blacks and would run the Align Utility and simply align the drive and get things over with rather than opt for the jumper.

What I have found is that Drive Manufacturers are not providing good information as to the use of their drives in a Legacy OS situation.

If you look at the newer WD RED Drives designed for NAS operation you will not find any information from WD for using these drives in other applications. Typically a NAS will format the drive specific to the NAS and maybe that's why there is little to no information the last time I checked. I currently have 5 x 2TB Red Drives running in my WHS2011 server since Dec 2012 they appear to run fine there but others have reported issues with them in WHS v1 servers. Others are running them without issue. So the suitability for these drives are still up in the air.

With many Seagate Drive warranties now at 1 yr one has to ask why since they use to offer a 5 yr warranty. Seagate drives were reported to be plug and play with WHS v1. With the reduction of the warranty period I have to wonder if this was a means to reduce the cost to the consumer or is it for other reasons. You can still find some Seagate drives with a 5 yr warranty but you have to read the box carefully.

If I were to add or replace a drive in my WHS v1 server I would go with the WD Black and would check them with the WD Alignment Software and simply align them and then take comfort that they have a 5 yr warranty. I do not believe I would add a WD Red.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 8:26 am 
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But, if I run alignment utility (on WD) then I have to do all that registry edits (posted somewhere in the forum) for storage pool to recognize the drive again? I am not comfortable with that all that much...
Or am I mistaken?


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 10:01 am 
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The registry edit was mentioned in Alex's write up on AF Drives: http://www.mediasmartserver.net/2010/12 ... me-server/

The last time I worked with known AF drives in a WHS v1 server was with the WD GRN EARS Drives. I ran those initially with a Jumper then removed the drives because I was not comfortable with them. Then I decided to run them again only I ran the alignment utility on them from within the WHS OS and then added them to the storage pool. I since pulled the drives out of the pool because of issues reported with HomeServerSMART and not because they were giving me any grief.

What I do not like about AF Drives is that the information available for them by the Drive Manufactures is unclear on how to properly prepare them for use in a LEGACY OS for which WHS is and the issues its caused the end users.

Seagate drives were reported to be plug and play when they first put out their AF drives while WD Drives needed some additional preparation work which was initially printed on the Antistatic Bags with a White Label which is now printed and hard to read. Some effort was done on the WD Drive Labels but the jumper option may or may not be on that same label.

While WHS v1 has served many of us well over the years and continue to do so the issue with AF Drives and using them properly is a problem. While I continue to run WHS v1 I know my time with it is limited as I have built a WHS2011 server to take its place. My WHS v1 servers are still active only because they house the backups of older clients on and off site but I have also repurposed them for other tasks to make them useful.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 11:16 am 
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So, if I understand you correctly - it is possible to use WD Align utility before adding a drive to the pool (thus avoiding post pooling aligment and readding a drive to pool via registry edits)? How do you do that? I taught that adding a drive to the pool automaticaly formats it and thus unaligment problem is present again. Do you have some step-by-step procedure for this?


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 11:39 am 
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One article exists on alignment that I found.
http://www.mediasmartserver.net/2010/12 ... me-server/

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 11:59 am 
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Ruben Rocha wrote:
One article exists on alignment that I found.
http://www.mediasmartserver.net/2010/12 ... me-server/


This is only for system drive, not pool drives. I don't believe there is a chance to use aligment tools without having to do registry edits afterwards, please somebody corrct me if I am wrong.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 12:10 pm 
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nathan.never wrote:
Ruben Rocha wrote:
One article exists on alignment that I found.
http://www.mediasmartserver.net/2010/12 ... me-server/


This is only for system drive, not pool drives. I don't believe there is a chance to use aligment tools without having to do registry edits afterwards, please somebody corrct me if I am wrong.


You need to keep reading.
Step 4 addresses pool drives.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 12:14 pm 
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Figured I would chime in here instead of over PM.

So far I have used a variety of AF drives in my WHSv1 machine. I avoided the first gen WD drives because of the whole jumper thing. I think I got a Hitachi one which pretty much brought my system to a halt so I removed. Aside from that, I have installed many of the Seagate LP drives, later WD Green Drives, and the WD Red drives (all 2TB), and have had zero issues with using on my WHSv1 (no jumpers, simply plug n play)

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 12:40 pm 
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Ruben Rocha wrote:
You need to keep reading.
Step 4 addresses pool drives.


Yes, but this is the jumper method - not the aligment procedure.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 1:24 pm 
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@ Damian ~ That's good to know.

The last time I added any drives to my WHS v1 was before July 7, 2011 which is when I put Highlander Online and since then I started moving drives over to Highlander until well I fully populated it last Jan. I have been happy with Hitachi Deskstar and WD Black but added 5 x 2TB WD Reds last Dec and Jan which have worked out well (Knock on Wood).

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 1:31 pm 
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Comp1962 wrote:
@ Damian ~ That's good to know.

The last time I added any drives to my WHS v1 was before July 7, 2011 which is when I put Highlander Online and since then I started moving drives over to Highlander until well I fully populated it last Jan. I have been happy with Hitachi Deskstar and WD Black but added 5 x 2TB WD Reds last Dec and Jan which have worked out well (Knock on Wood).


Think I am up to maybe 3 2TB Red Drives, to go along with 16 2TB Seagate LP or WD Green drives :D

However, given all the limitations with drives, that is the reason why I am looking for a new build. That Lian Li case came, whoa nelly is it big!!! Now the fun part, picking out the hardware!

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 2:52 pm 
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I have too many drives to keep track out but what I do know is Highlander has 23. That Lian Li enclosure is very nice. I think I want to see you populate it first to see how the drive temps go. My Norco Enclosure is loud but it keeps the drive temps nice and cool. Be we can talk about that in your new Blog Post.

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~ Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD5
~ AMD Phenom II X4 995 3.2 GHz
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~ 3 Supermicro AOC-SASLP-MV8


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2013 3:06 am 
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Just an update of the compatible drive information.

I wrote a mail to WD support asking them if the new WD20EFRX support the jumper option for pre-alignment of the unformated drive (like previously with WD20EARS). There is no information about this on the disk label or documentation, but I found some information on the internet that this option is still there, just not advertised. So I checked with WD support. This is the answer I got:

Quote:
Thank you for contacting Western Digital Support.
I check everything and you can use jumper setting 7 and 8 to adjust the advanced setting on the model WD20EFRX.
So the jumper settings are the same for all of our drives.
Please reply to this e-mail, and we will be happy to assist you further.


According to this, the option is still there to be used. So, it seems the WD20EFRX is currently the only drive that can be used in WHSv1 hassle free, just using a jumper solution.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2013 8:37 am 
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nathan.never wrote:
Just an update of the compatible drive information.

I wrote a mail to WD support asking them if the new WD20EFRX support the jumper option for pre-alignment of the unformated drive (like previously with WD20EARS). There is no information about this on the disk label or documentation, but I found some information on the internet that this option is still there, just not advertised. So I checked with WD support. This is the answer I got:

Quote:
Thank you for contacting Western Digital Support.
I check everything and you can use jumper setting 7 and 8 to adjust the advanced setting on the model WD20EFRX.
So the jumper settings are the same for all of our drives.
Please reply to this e-mail, and we will be happy to assist you further.


According to this, the option is still there to be used. So, it seems the WD20EFRX is currently the only drive that can be used in WHSv1 hassle free, just using a jumper solution.


So the jumper solution is still needed? I have yet to ever do a jumper (even on those REDs which I own 4)

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