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Running Disk Utility/DiskWarrior on my 5D would take close to 12 hours
09-01-2013, 07:07 AM
Post: #11
RE: Running Disk Utility/DiskWarrior on my 5D would take close to 12 hours
(08-30-2013 02:03 PM)bhiga Wrote:  Just for sanity's sake, I would try using a different port and cable.

Just did that.
USB 3 on a current Mac mini as well as USB 2 on an old Mac Pro. Both came out with the same results: Disk Utility taking forever (not finding anything).

I booted my Mac Pro from the Disk Warrior CD and Disk warrior (in addition to taking 2 hours) reports "reduced speed due to disk malfunction".
The error report also included some necessary fixes to the volume information, but it wouldn't let me replace the volume information blocks because of the disk malfunction.

Now I borrowed a friend's 5D to see if it makes a difference. After migrating the drives (which worked fine) and letting Drobo 5D do it's housekeeping, I re-ran those tests above - same results.

Thus, it seems that really there seems to be something wrong with my raid rather than the device, which is really scaring me.

To be honest, I am quite clueless now, as it am not able tot rebuild my volume blocks with disk warrior and the whole system behavior just seems odd and not correct...
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09-02-2013, 02:42 AM
Post: #12
RE: Running Disk Utility/DiskWarrior on my 5D would take close to 12 hours
The problem with DW giving the disk malfunction error is an old one. I have/had the same issue on a Drobo S and now 5D.
No worry here, it's a DW problem! Sometimes it works but most of the time it gives this supid error. In the past I informed the dvelopper but he doesn't seem to care, it's poorly maintained.
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09-02-2013, 08:55 AM
Post: #13
RE: Running Disk Utility/DiskWarrior on my 5D would take close to 12 hours
(09-02-2013 02:42 AM)manfredell Wrote:  The problem with DW giving the disk malfunction error is an old one. I have/had the same issue on a Drobo S and now 5D.
No worry here, it's a DW problem! Sometimes it works but most of the time it gives this supid error. In the past I informed the dvelopper but he doesn't seem to care, it's poorly maintained.

Agreed. DW doesn't seem to get that much dev attention anymore. On the other side, it's a rock solid tool that (so far) has found many errors, which DU didn't.

It would feel great to know that my 5D passes a DW test and that I could rebuild my 5D directory with it. Guess we are stuck with DU for the time being.

Do you guys use any other tools for this purpose instead?
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09-02-2013, 10:28 AM
Post: #14
RE: Running Disk Utility/DiskWarrior on my 5D would take close to 12 hours
I've used TechTool Pro on a regular drive. How does that compare to DiskWarrior?

You earn respect by how you live, not by what you demand.
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09-04-2013, 04:58 AM
Post: #15
RE: Running Disk Utility/DiskWarrior on my 5D would take close to 12 hours
btw if you can still access your data in the meanwhile, maybe its a good idea to borrow your friends unit a bit longer, and copy a bkp of your existing data onto a fresh set of drives.

(btw i have XP home SP2, a Drobo v1 with 2x 1TB/2x 1.5TB WD greens, & a bkp Drobo v2 with the same + a DroboShare: unused)
& a DroboS v2 with 3xWD15EADS &2x1TB in DDR mode on win7, & a drobo5D (all usb)
  • btw i did a sustained (write) operation for about 6 hours, and got 13.2MB / sec ...objection? "sustained" :)
    (16.7MB/s on a v2 & 47-96MB/s drobo-s)
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09-04-2013, 08:50 AM
Post: #16
RE: Running Disk Utility/DiskWarrior on my 5D would take close to 12 hours
(09-04-2013 04:58 AM)Paul Wrote:  btw if you can still access your data in the meanwhile, maybe its a good idea to borrow your friends unit a bit longer, and copy a bkp of your existing data onto a fresh set of drives.

While it would be a great way to make sure all is fine, it is a very costly option, as it would require to buy at least 6GB odd redundant disk storage in order to copy my files to the second 5D.

Thus, this is not an option right now, unfortunately
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09-04-2013, 09:34 AM
Post: #17
RE: Running Disk Utility/DiskWarrior on my 5D would take close to 12 hours
tl;dr - You're overthinking it, let Drobo handle bad blocks.
Okay, let's try to decipher what happened here play-by-play...

(08-30-2013 04:52 PM)oirudleahcim Wrote:  Apparently as the Drobo neared its maximum capacity, the app I was using to create the backup disk image on the Drobo slowed to a crawl, or the Drobo itself slowed to a crawl trying to find spaces for the data. This persisted after multiple attempts over several days.
Yes, Drobo slows to a crawl when it reaches 95% fill. This is by design and documented here.

(08-30-2013 04:52 PM)oirudleahcim Wrote:  So I removed GB of unneeded data on the Drobo and tried the clone drive to disk image on the Drobo again. Again, the routine failed, and this last time Drive Genius 3's Drive Pulse menu item reported a number of bad blocks on the Drobo. One of the Drobo's drives also started giving me the red light warning. At least no foreboding drive noises—yet.
1. Only a flashing/blinking red light means a bad drive.
A solid red light simply means "Drobo is really running out of space, fill this slot with a drive, or replace the drive here with a larger drive."
This is what happens when Drobo gets close to full.

2. Assuming this description is correct (I have no reason to believe otherwise), Drive Pulse is scanning for bad physical blocks and therefore should not be used on a Drobo!

Because Drobo uses Thin Provisioning, there will be blocks addresses that don't have "real" storage behind them. Think of them like empty lots of property. They have a street address, but there may not be a house actually built on the lot.

When a drive utility tests for bad blocks, it's like the inspector going down the street checking everyone's house for livability and condemning lots that have problems.
Thing is, when the inspector reaches an empty lot, they might ignore it (good), but more likely they'll condemn it (bad) because there isn't a house there.

Long story short, testing for bad blocks on a Drobo is bad and more than likely will result in a huge number of reported bad blocks, even though there may be nothing wrong with the physical storage. Let Drobo handle bad block management.


(08-30-2013 04:52 PM)oirudleahcim Wrote:  I powered the Drobo down to do some cable reconfiguring so I could work on some other projects via external HDs on FW800 while trying to run a block repair utility on the Drobo. When Drobo came back up, there was no red drive warning light! I tried to run Disk Warrior but got errors similar to what's reported here.
This probably was caused by the fact that Drobo's housekeeping had not "caught up with" your previous mass-deletion yet. When you do very large deletes, Drobo will mark the delete, but it can take a little bit of time before the freed blocks are actually ready for re-use. In the street analogy I used earlier, this is like demolishing a house and rebuilding it. There's some amount of clean-up time required between the demolition and when you can start building the new house on the lot.


(08-30-2013 04:52 PM)oirudleahcim Wrote:  I powered the Drobo down again, reordered the hard drives (just for chuckles) and powered it on. After four days of data protection rebuilding (orange flashing lights), again no red light on a Drobo hard drive. No more warnings from Drive Genius, though I would expect this because I wasn't writing massive GBs of data to the Drobo.
This I find strange. Reordering the drives should not have caused a rebuild. Drobo doesn't care about the drive positions - it cares that all the drives in the disk pack are there.

It's possible that Drobo found some problem that forced it to rebuild, but we're already in muddy waters, so it's difficult to say.


(08-30-2013 04:52 PM)oirudleahcim Wrote:  I've tried to run several disk utilities to check for bad blocks on the Drobo drives.
Bad block scans are bad for Drobo. It'll cause "phantom" errors and unnecessary worry.

(08-30-2013 04:52 PM)oirudleahcim Wrote:  After that, remembered having recently read a Drobo FAQ webpage that suggested booting off the Disk Warrior DVD and having the Drobo plugged in directly to the computer via USB to get around the non-rebuilding index issue.
That should be safe as long as you're just repairing the filesystem and not scanning for bad blocks.


(08-30-2013 04:52 PM)oirudleahcim Wrote:  I am going to attempt this in a little while and see what happens. Maybe if I can at least rebuild the directory I can resume running a program to check for bad blocks.
Please don't do that. Smile

(08-30-2013 04:52 PM)oirudleahcim Wrote:  I'm also considering pulling each drive out of the Drobo, putting it into a Voyager Q external enclosure and running the block check on each disk separately, eventually putting all four drives back into the Drobo.
That doesn't hurt. I would shut down Drobo completely, check all the drives, then put them all back though. That way you'll avoid a lengthy rebuild.
If there really is a problem with one of the drives, boot the Drobo as normal with all drives, then eject the drive that has errors. Drobo will rebuild with the remaining drives (as long as there is sufficient available storage) and your data will be safe. Then you can replace the drive with errors.


(08-30-2013 04:52 PM)oirudleahcim Wrote:  (Feel free to advise if you have any experience doing this or if you know: does the Drobo data protection routine itself weed out bad blocks?)
I think rdo addressed this... Drobo handles bad blocks on its own.
How it finds the bad blocks (whether during use, or periodic scans) depends on the model. The early 4-bay models do not actively scan for bad blocks ("scrub") so they will only find and deal with bad blocks during use (remember that the data redundancy allows for correction of bad blocks so there is no data corruption unless there are bad blocks corresponding to the same data on multiple drives) but the 5-bay and larger models do, so they will scan for and correct bad blocks during idle times.

--Brandon | WHS2011+Drive Bender/2x Drobo v2/Drobo S G1/ Drobo S G2/Transporter
Drobo provides fault-tolerance, it's NOT a substitute for regular backups.
Drobo Best Practices - Official and Community-sourced.
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09-05-2013, 12:46 PM
Post: #18
RE: Running Disk Utility/DiskWarrior on my 5D would take close to 12 hours
(09-04-2013 08:50 AM)ovq Wrote:  
(09-04-2013 04:58 AM)Paul Wrote:  btw if you can still access your data in the meanwhile, maybe its a good idea to borrow your friends unit a bit longer, and copy a bkp of your existing data onto a fresh set of drives.

While it would be a great way to make sure all is fine, it is a very costly option, as it would require to buy at least 6GB odd redundant disk storage in order to copy my files to the second 5D.

Thus, this is not an option right now, unfortunately

ok ovq, i can understand that...
(am guessing you mean 6TB which is huge... if it was 6GB id send you a blank dvd Smile but yes 6TB is a lot.

the only thing i can think of which "might" be useful in some way, would be to try signing up for a free trial at mozy.com or crashplan or another cheapish provider, with the aim of at least being able to backup some of your more important stuff while you have access to it, just in case. (i know it wont be as effective as hooking up an actual local drive but it might be a lot cheaper than one, and might help a bit)

(btw i have XP home SP2, a Drobo v1 with 2x 1TB/2x 1.5TB WD greens, & a bkp Drobo v2 with the same + a DroboShare: unused)
& a DroboS v2 with 3xWD15EADS &2x1TB in DDR mode on win7, & a drobo5D (all usb)
  • btw i did a sustained (write) operation for about 6 hours, and got 13.2MB / sec ...objection? "sustained" :)
    (16.7MB/s on a v2 & 47-96MB/s drobo-s)
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09-06-2013, 01:56 PM
Post: #19
RE: Running Disk Utility/DiskWarrior on my 5D would take close to 12 hours
Although I'm a big fan of Diskwarrior, I stopped using it on Drobos for the exact reasons stated earlier here. It would often and frequently come back with the "disk malfunction" errors when in reality, nothing was wrong with the drives. I even had it do this with a newly formatted Drobo with no data on it. Each individual drive tested fine with DW, but not in the 4 bay Gen II Drobo I've had for years.

Bottom line is that while it works for everything else, I stopped using it for Drobo volumes.
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