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JaredDM

Need an Areca Expert For Odd Situation

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So I've been using an Areca 1880ix card for some time for two RAID 6 arrays I use for some huge DAS needs.  I've dealt with the normal issues of a drive dropping offline or failing plenty of times.  However, today I come in to find a rather odd situation.

I've got 16x 4Tb HGST drives in an external enclosure connected to the card.  This morning I come in to find that 12 of the 16 are showing as 0Mb size and as "failed".  I took out and tested some of the "failed" drives on another system and they're perfectly fine.  No hard drive issues at all.  Then I was thinking that perhaps the enclosure (which uses SAS multipliers) had failed.  So just to test I used the "set failed disk to active" option on one of the drives and sure enough it now shows correct size and ID.  So the enclosure must be fine too.

So at this point it seems that all the hardware is perfectly fine, but the controller thinks that 12 drives are failed when they're not.  I've got about 30Tb of data on this thing.  None of it doesn't exist somewhere else, but it'd save me a ton of time if I can get this array to go back online.  I'm just not sure how to proceed here.  I see that the "failed drive" which I Activated now shows as free and not as a part of the RAID set anymore so it looks like it got kicked out of the RAID set when I reactivate it (good thing it's RAID 6 and I can afford to lose a disk or two).

So my question is, how do I get this thing to realize that the other 11 disks are actually still good and try to go back online?

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Normal procedure if memory serves, you set all the failed disks to active, then delete and recreate the entire array without re-initializing.

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On 1/17/2019 at 2:56 AM, continuum said:

Normal procedure if memory serves, you set all the failed disks to active, then delete and recreate the entire array without re-initializing.

That is entirely the wrong procedure.  Fortunately, I knew better than to listen to this as it would have nuked the metadata. (unless you're talking about restoring from backup, but that would have required moving around 30+Tb of data, and I didn't want to even consider that).

Fortunately, Areca support was very helpful (albeit slow to reply to messages).  Turned out I had to set the "failed drives" (not really failed) to be active.  Then I could attempt to do a Rescue RAID set (which didn't work in my case).  Finally what I had to do was to go to the menu where you normally would type the word "RESCUE" in the rescue RAID set menu and instead type in LeVeL2ReScUe (just like that) and reboot.  It was able to reassemble the array with all data still intact and has been fine since then.

Also, I was told to be sure to only have one RAID set physically attached when doing the level 2 rescue.

Hopefully this is helpful to someone else with a similar issue.

Edited by JaredDM

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Oh yeah, and after you get your array back online the first time, you have to go back to the RAID rescue menu and type in "SIGNAT" to regenerate the metadata on all member disks.  Otherwise, the rescue won't survive a reboot.  Learned that the hard way, but no big deal.

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Have they changed things since the ARC-1680i days? We had a few failures and my notes definitely include what I described above when LeVeL2ReScUe did not work.

I don't see any mention of SIGNAT in my notes at all, so I assume that is a significant change from the ARC-1680i-series to the ARC-1880i's...

That said, glad it worked! (also, derp on me forgetting about LeVeL2ReScUe as a key step to do before what I described above...)

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