Is it normal for initialization to occur when new?

I just purchased an 8TB DX4000 today. After completing the setup, I was surprised to a message in the window that said “Initializing…” along with a percent. It’s progressing very slowly, about 0.02% a minute. At this rate, it will take several days for it to finish. The system is brand new and has no data on it at all (other than the default folders, of course). I only completed the initial setup. The manual says that “Initializing” means “The RAID system is initializing the storage; this is similar to Verifying.” Looking at the description of “Verifying,” it says “RAID system was shut down inadvertently. It is validating and correcting the integrity of the RAID array.”  The system hasn’t lost power unexpectedly and was only restarted during the initial setup, which IIRC the manual states will happen.

Is this normal? Has anyone else experienced this? It’s very frustrating to have spent so much money on this system, only to not be able to use it for 4 days.

I believe this is normal, I have the 2 bay unit and that one took a few hours to initalize. I’m guessing that since the drives are new, they must be setup in the RAID. This should only happen once. Unless you loose power, then it could take up to 5 days for the 4 drive units according to other posts. This is why you should use a UPS and also get the 2nd power brick.

If this unit had a high end RAID controllers then the initization or rebuild would be a lot faster, but that would cost a lot more and for this form factor, it would not fit.

Well, it seems I have no choice to wait.  Strange that no review I was able to find mentioned anything about a long initializing process when the unit is new. I would think they would mention that.  Several did talk about how long the rebuild process is after a drive is removed (as part of their testing of the unit), but that seems like a different case. I haven’t removed any drives and there haven’t been any abrupt power losses or hard shutdowns. The unit is on a UPS.

Just FYI, I think that SmallNetworkBuilder’s review talked about it. As a general rule, I think they have some good reviews.

Having just setup an 8GB DX4000 for our office, I can say this did NOT happen on our unit.

Initializing/verifying a RAID array is only needed when there is believed to be a chance of inconsistency between drives/parity. Since the array was started fresh during unit setup, there is no data to verify originally, and thus no need for a consistency check.

I would contact WD support and submit a ticket with whatever information they request, as this sounds like a bug in the setup process.

You can still use it, performance just may be a bit slower

I purchased mine a couple of days ago and it has been working on initializing ever since.  Should it be doing this out of the box?  It does not seem normal for it to do this unless it is rebuilding.  Dashboard is slow and so are file transfers due to “initialization”.  I called tech support and they said that it is the initial formatting of the raid 5.  I thought that that is done in the factory to raid 5.  I did have a server update running out of the box-Microsoft push.  Maybe there was an abrupt shutdown and that is why it is rebuilding?

I am getting another unit in a couple of days and if that one does it as well, then it is the way it was designed.

I just picked up one of these 8 TB servers last night and my experience is the same as yours. From a fresh startup of a new system, it does want to initialize the RAID 5 array and I’m guessing, based on the rate of progress, is going to take several days to complete. Hope this is a very occasional thing, slows the box to a crawl. I had considered returning it, as this is a bit ridiculous, but since it replaces my failed Windows Home Server, going to a Drobo or other non-Windows server based solution doesn’t appeal to me. So, I’ll let the RAID 5 do it’s thing and hope it’s fast and useful once it’s complete. Not having dealt with RAID 5 rebuilds before, is it OK to use the server while it’s doing the initial RAID 5 initiailization or do we need to wait until it’s complete?

You can use it no harm, it will just be slow.  I mean if you really want to, install connectors and let it start backups.  OTH, you may say GEEZ this slow and throw it out the window :angry:

Reguardless, you will “eventually” be as happy with this as you were WHS V.1  Good Raid and tons of space. (Better than DE)


That’s what I figure, I’ll just be patient and wait for it to complete the initialization. I would imaging they get a lot of unhappy customers when they find themselves having spent a small fortune for a shiny new server only to find that it needs to spin away for a week before it’s useful.   

The good news is that all the user folders on the now-deceased HWS drives are intact, so at least I can restore that data, but I’m considering the system backups essentially gone, unless there is some automagical way to recover them as well.

Well the backups do not transfer from V.1 to V.2  so that does not matter I suppose.  Good news if you have your User Data.  You might consider the Keep Vault add-in to back up your user data on this new box, or do a Robocopy or similar script to a USB drive to back it up now.


Here is an update.  I had bought  4 units of the 8TB and only one did the “initializing” for 5 days.  The rest have been wotking without ever “initializing”   That one unit was essentially rebuilding the array for some unknown reason.   Also, I bought 2 of the 12 TB models and  one “initialized” and one didn’t.   Just an FYI that not all units “initialize”.  Strange.

Good info Thanks

And you must love the box !  GREAT

Purchased a 12TB a week ago from Amazon.  It took 6 DAYS to “Initialize”.   Once done…shut down…hooked up to ups and rebooted.  Don’t want to have to go through that again.


The server only goes into RAID Initialization or RAID verification mode when the server experiences an unclean shutdown or inadvertent power loss. 

The first time (and only first time) the server  experiences the unclean shutdown, it will go into RAID initialization mode.

If the server experiences another unclean shutdown thereafter, it will go into RAID verification mode. RAID verification is somewhat faster than RAID initialization, depending on amount of data stored on your server.

It is highly recommended that with any type of NAS/server with RAID, you use a UPS to protect your systems from sudden power loss and WD Sentinel DX4000 is no exception to that.

Here’s a KB that’s posted on WD Support Knowledge base regarding the supported UPSs: Answer ID 9403 


I spoke with one of the managers at WDC today and I am going through the same thing. I was looking for an instant  8TB network storage solution like the WD Sharespace that we had and this was far from being instant. I was told that this is basically SBS software in a small footprint and that it does take anywhere from 3-5 days depending on whether you purchased the 8TB or 12 TB model. I am at a loss why they are not initializing these units before they ship them to us. The manager I spoke with was very helpful, but I let him know that they need to place a warning in the marketing material that 2-5 day time requirement for device setup is required before the unit can be functional. I guarantee the customers will think twice about buying something they have to wait 2-5 days on before they can use it. I am hoping the WD will rethink this process and develop a more expedient setup solution for this device. Other than the extensive amount of time to set this thing up, it looks like a great little box. That’s my nickel on the matter.

I have just purchased the 12TB system. The system went through the config and now says WDSENTINAL with the IP address. There is no initialization in progress but when I go to the ip address\connect it states Forbidden: Access is denied. You do not have permission to view this directory or page using the credentials that you supplied. Should the panel be displaying the progress of the initialization?

You are fine

just type http://Ip address  first.  You have to go through setup.

If you want a video :)

You have to run the basic setup first, servername, password etc first, then it will tell you, you can do Http://servername/connect

I need the software to get to the point your video starts at. To get that software you need to goto IP/connect and download it. Do you know where this software can be downloaded from the net?