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Hot-swap Sata Drives. Possible?

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I was under the impression that you could Hot-swap SATA drives. I'm using 3Ware 8506-8 and WD SATA 200GB drives and the 3Ware Hot Swap cage RDC-400 and when I try to Hot-swap, the OS freezes for about 30 seconds and then locks. Upon reboot it wants to scandisk the drive before it will allow me to use it.

What am I missing here.

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What am I missing here.

Are you trying to unplug the drive without disabling it in windows first?

You need to remove/disable the device in device manager first.

This info is from the silicon image website:

SATA: Hot Plugging Drives Under Windows 2000/XP

This feature is not explicitly highlighted in our current drivers, but all SATA controllers from Silicon Image do support hot plug capability. To remove a drive from a powered up system, do the following:

+Enter the Windows Device Manager (through Control Panel or right clicking on My Computer and going to Properties)

+Go to Disk Drives and find the disk you want to remove

+Right click on the desired disk drive and select Remove/Disable

After performing this operation, you can remove the hard drive without risk of losing any data that is currently stored in cache memory.

To plug in a new SATA drive in the array, you just need to plug in the power and serial cables and Windows will automatically detect the new HD. NOTE: If you are re-attaching a drive after a remove operation as explained above, you must make sure that the HD is power cycled (power cable unplugged) before re-attaching the HD serial data cable.

Comments/Special Instructions:

It is not recommended to perform these hot plug/unplug actions on earlier versions of Windows such as Win9x or WinME since system lockups can occur.

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Answering my own question to some degree, I talked with a 3Ware Tech that gave me this link:

http://www.3ware.com/support/download.asp

Choose the CLI (Command Line Interface) to download.

Does this just do what cold c is suggesting I need to do (like via WMI or such)?

What about the newest SATA drives that "supposedly" have built-in support for Hot-Swap.

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Does this just do what cold c is suggesting I need to do (like via WMI or such)?

I don't know, best to use the CLI thing. Shame I can't edit my post to make clear that method is only for Silicon Image controllers. :blink:

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http://www.mobilexperts.com/SwapMgr/SwapHome.cfm

They have a software called SwapManager which is generic mounting/unmounting software for windows. I've tested it with p-ata, s-ata drives and works fine with a generic p-ata rack also which doesn't even mention support of hotswapping.

I am not sure, but the free trial download version may be a older one, so it may not work so good as the latest..

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For us, the CLI thing actually works better because we are using these drives for Backup purposes and we just have Veritas BackupExec run the CLI before and after the backup job.

Are you saying that is what I'm missing? I don't get your point in posting that link. I have the 3Ware RDC-400 4 Drive Mobile Rack and I don't think it or the SuperMicro have anything that add to the ability to do this (aside from making it easier to pull the drive out).

IIRC, I read that the newest Seagate SATA drives have "real" support for Hot Swap. This would indicate that the "old" ones like what I'm using, don't. Can anyone shed more light on this?

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I don't know of any OS that will allow you to pull a logical storage device without complaining loudly. :)

Since you have one parition per drive (Yes?) you have to stop the drive or unmount the volume before removing it.

The drive cage simply makes it easy to remove the drive, typically the connect/disconnect (i.e. "HOT Swap") is handled buy the drive adapter card.

First off, if a utility is provided to *remove* and *add* drives then use it.

The key words in the link you provided are "remove" and "rescan"

Under Linux (the link showed Linux as an OS) I would think you could just unmount the drive and remove it. The windows equivalent is "stopping" the device.

Now if you had multiple drives in a hardware RAID array, then you could swap physical drives since the "logical" device still exists.

If you have a RAID array and the system locks after removing one of the drives, then you'll have to use the utility...and then ask the card manufacturer "Why?"

DogEared

8^D

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