Caviar Black in RAID5 failed?

I have an ASUS motherboard which uses an ICH10R chip and Intel Matrix RAID BIOS. I’ve had 3 Caviar Black 500GB drives running fine as a 1GB data drive (“Monster”) on my Windows 7 64-bit desktop for a year.

Yesterday, I noticed a long pause, and checked the event log. It said there had been IAStorDataMgrSvc “Disk on port 0: failed”, and “Volume Monster: Degraded”. The Intel RST application said that Disk 0 was offline, and the RAID volume was Degraded. It looked clear-cut - the drive had failed.

I took the failed drive out of the RAID set to put it back online. Finding it hard to believe that the drive had failed ‘just like that’ I (maybe foolishly) added it back to the array, and the rebuild completed successfully early this morning, although there were a couple of ‘iaStor error 9: device timeout’ events during the rebuild.

Today, I am noticing long delays accessing some of the volume’s files. I need to work out what’s faulty, but there are no new errors in the event log, and the WD Data Lifeguard Diagnostic software doesn’t seem to work with RAID.

Another google suggests that it’s not definite that the drive is faulty, and it could be a cabling or motherboard fault. I tried reconnecting the drives yesterday, in case there was a bad connection.

How can I properly diagnose the faulty component?

actually, wd does not recommend using its desktop drives in any raid configuration other than raid 1 or 0.  what you may be experiencing is the drive going into error checking mode, which in turn causes the drive to drop out of the raid.  I’d download dlg diagnostics and do both a quick and extended test on the drive to make sure that it’s okay.  you can do it in dos or windows.

Yes, I’ve noticed, from various forums, that there have been several versions of this drive, and some will not work with RAID.

I have contacted WD support, and they suggested I break the array and test the drive on its own. I did this and it failed the DLGDIAG quick test. Support then agreed I should get a replacement, and mention its RAID use in the request. Presumably, this is so they can make sure I get a RAID-compatible version.

Manufacturers do know what the “I” stands for in “RAID”, don’t they?

then that explains it.  the drive was going into error checking mode. I do doubt that they will trade your drive up to a commercial raid drive, though.  to do a proper raid 5, you should be using raid edition drives.  but I’m not a salesman, so I hope you can get the next one to work.

by the way, the “I” used to mean inexpensive, but now it means independent. 

Ha ha ha. I missed that one. That’s a bit sneaky!

Apparently it was dispatched today, and tech support said that it was definitely flagged for use in a RAID set. The email said: WD5001AALS-00L3B2, which is different to my failed drive in the last four characters, but I’ve no idea what the code means.

the last four characters are probably referring to any manufacturing changes made in the drives. 

The drives that are raid compatibile are STILL inexpensive… compared to the alternatives.

Redundant arrays used to be entirely the baliwick of SCSI disks.   The best RE4 SATA disk is still hugely inexpensive compared to a comparable SCSI (now SAS) disk… :slight_smile: