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Solved! Dell R710 RAID PERC H700 Foreign Configuration(s) issue

Stealthrtt

Junior Member
Nov 12, 2017
6
1
36
Hey all.

Just getting around to setting up my server from it setting some 2 years without plugging it in or running it at all.

Now prior to it sitting I did have it running for awhile and I know it does run as it sits today but there seems to be some configuration issue with it now?
error.png


This R710 that i have is the 6 x3.5" version. They consist of:
r710.png

0-256GB SSD      2-Seagate 6TB HDD    4-Seagate 6TB HDD
1-Seagate 6TB HDD   3-Seagate 6TB HDD 5-Blank

I am running the above with a H700 raid PCIe card with Cache Memory of 1GB.
Upon startup the lights look like this:
r710l.png

Drives 1, 2, 3, and 4 are all lite up solid green. However, drive 0 does not have any lights on at all.

I took out the 256GB SSD in drive 0 and hooked it up to my external USB adapter on my other computer and it came up just fine with all the files on it being correct and not corrupted. I also hooked up a regular HDD to drive 0 and it gave me a solid green lite without that error.

The below image is what it looks like when I tested out drive 0 with a 320GB HDD.
raid1.png


The RAID with the 256GB SSD looks like this:
raid2.png


So before I do anything on the server I would like an expert on this to let me know what I need to do in order to boot to my Windows Server that's on the 256GB SSD. The 6TB drive(s) have a lot of stuff on them that i do not want to erase or destroyed by losing the raid 5 array.

I tried pressing 'F' but it didn't seem to do anything but continue on? And it comes up each time i reboot. Sometimes the drive blinks orange really fast and other times its just off. Am i missing something?

Here are some screen shots of the RAID controller config:
raid6.jpg


raid5.jpg


Oddly enough when I hit F5 (on the VD Mgmt screen) to refresh it starts blinking the 256GB ssd...

It has shown up once.... But then I did a Initialization and i chose OK when i wanted to choose Cancel...Hence I had to clone the SSD with the image I made prior to doing all of this. Ever since doing that it has not shown up on the list.

It was suggested to create a new VD without Initialization should fix the issue but It doesn't seem to be selectable. Its grayed out.

raid7.jpg


raid8.jpg


raid9.jpg
 
Last edited:

ch33zw1z

Lifer
Nov 4, 2004
30,469
9,404
136
There's something going on with the 256GB from what I can tell. IMO, shut down, unplug power, cam out the RAID 5 array, and reload windows on the 256GB, after you're done, shut down and unplug, cam in the 4 drives and it should see the array just fine. In one of those pictures, the 256 is saying smart error, plus you cloned it which can confuse the controller.

Got any backups of the data, gotta have a last resort type of plan. If no backups, proceed with caution.

I most often see this problem with a raid battery is on the fritz, or a cache card / dimm, so a physical inspection is a good idea as well. Bad batteries will be swollen (usually), bad card cards can be harder to confirm without a spare part to test with

Also, this topic should go in the storage forum
 

ch33zw1z

Lifer
Nov 4, 2004
30,469
9,404
136
There's something going on with the 256GB from what I can tell. IMO, shut down, unplug power, cam out the RAID 5 array, and reload windows on the 256GB, after you're done, shut down and unplug, cam in the 4 drives and it should see the array just fine. In one of those pictures, the 256 is saying smart error, plus you cloned it which can confuse the controller.

Got any backups of the data, gotta have a last resort type of plan. If no backups, proceed with caution.

I most often see this problem with a raid battery is on the fritz, or a cache card / dimm, so a physical inspection is a good idea as well. Bad batteries will be swollen (usually), bad card cards can be harder to confirm without a spare part to test with

Also, this topic should go in the storage forum
 

Stealthrtt

Junior Member
Nov 12, 2017
6
1
36
Sorry but what does CAM mean (or stand for)? And it doesn't have a battery but its always never had one even when this was working back then.
 

Stealthrtt

Junior Member
Nov 12, 2017
6
1
36
So to make sure I understand correctly and not erase all my data you are telling me to:
1) Shutdown.
2) Unplug.
3) Take drive 1,2,3 and 4 out.
4) Boot from USB install Windows Server again onto the 256SSD that's still in drive 0.
5) Steps 1 and 2 again.
6) Place drive 1,2,3 and 4 in.
7) Boot and it should have my original RAID 5 intact.
 

ch33zw1z

Lifer
Nov 4, 2004
30,469
9,404
136
So to make sure I understand correctly and not erase all my data you are telling me to:
1) Shutdown.
2) Unplug.
3) Take drive 1,2,3 and 4 out.
4) Boot from USB install Windows Server again onto the 256SSD that's still in drive 0.
5) Steps 1 and 2 again.
6) Place drive 1,2,3 and 4 in.
7) Boot and it should have my original RAID 5 intact.
Yep. You can also do this without removing the raid array, but I would be VERY cautious with what you point windows at. Remote server admins do it all the time.

Also, you can try to run diags on the 256 GB before anything else, the smart error is a bit odd. In the case that you replace it, you'd follow the same basic steps to reload a new drive anyways.

Edit: before jumping head long into a reload, consider a couple things:

1. You may not be able to create a VD with just a single raw disk
2. The foreign config is likely the 256GB disk
3. You can try booting a support Live disk and recover data, assuming you have 16TB worth of storage somewhere
4. Raid isn't a backup, if the data is critical make a backup solution plan.
 
Last edited:

SamirD

Golden Member
Jun 12, 2019
1,124
184
66
www.huntsvillecarscene.com
I love your server images! Where did you generate them?

I think I'm following what the issue is and may have a solution that's pretty easy, but I need to clarify a few points.

First, is your raid 5 just the 4x 6tb drives? If so, just pulling them out will keep them secure--don't mix up the order though. I usually just unlock mine and pull them out a bit from the backplane.

Second, if your ssd isn't in the raid at all and you have a cloned backup, write that backup to your 320gb drive and boot up. If it works, you should be able to put your raid drives back in and everything will work like it originally did, sans the ssd, which for some reason doesn't work properly with the r710 anymore. But your data and everything would be okay, and I would recommend a backup if you don't already have one.
 

Stealthrtt

Junior Member
Nov 12, 2017
6
1
36
Yep. You can also do this without removing the raid array, but I would be VERY cautious with what you point windows at. Remote server admins do it all the time.

Also, you can try to run diags on the 256 GB before anything else, the smart error is a bit odd. In the case that you replace it, you'd follow the same basic steps to reload a new drive anyways.

Edit: before jumping head long into a reload, consider a couple things:

1. You may not be able to create a VD with just a single raw disk
2. The foreign config is likely the 256GB disk
3. You can try booting a support Live disk and recover data, assuming you have 16TB worth of storage somewhere
4. Raid isn't a backup, if the data is critical make a backup solution plan.
Doesn't look like it finds it in order for me to do that?

Trying to install windows gives an error because it can not find a drive to install it to.6
 

Stealthrtt

Junior Member
Nov 12, 2017
6
1
36
Well..... after a long long battle I finally won :)

1) Shutdown.
2) Unplug.
3) Take drive 1,2,3 and 4 out.
4) Go into the RAID config and create a new VD since the ssd shows up finally
raidfix1.jpg

5) Steps 1 and 2 again.
6) Place drive 1,2,3 and 4 in.
7) Boot and it should have my original RAID 5 intact.
raidfix2.jpg

8) Reboot with your windows server on a bootable usb drive.
9) Proceed to install windows....
raidfix3.jpg

10) Once the above step is completed and it counts down to restart be sure to take out the USB.
11) Windows login screen should come up
raidfix4.jpg

Wow... that took a lot. I wish i knew what happened that made the SSD not be recognized since all it did was site in storage few a 1 year or so.

But of all of the above I'm most happy to see this
raidfix5.jpg

@ch33zw1z ! I couldn't have done it without you're help! And I really, really appreciate you sticking with me throughout this!
 
Last edited:
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Reactions: ch33zw1z

Stealthrtt

Junior Member
Nov 12, 2017
6
1
36
I love your server images! Where did you generate them?

I think I'm following what the issue is and may have a solution that's pretty easy, but I need to clarify a few points.

First, is your raid 5 just the 4x 6tb drives? If so, just pulling them out will keep them secure--don't mix up the order though. I usually just unlock mine and pull them out a bit from the backplane.

Second, if your ssd isn't in the raid at all and you have a cloned backup, write that backup to your 320gb drive and boot up. If it works, you should be able to put your raid drives back in and everything will work like it originally did, sans the ssd, which for some reason doesn't work properly with the r710 anymore. But your data and everything would be okay, and I would recommend a backup if you don't already have one.
I got the images from the R710 Owners Manual. Page 12.
 

ch33zw1z

Lifer
Nov 4, 2004
30,469
9,404
136
@Stealthrtt - good job, glad it worked out. Fwiw, I'm still suspicious of the SSD 😉 but at least you can run consistency checks on the array now and get a backup of critical data.

On to robocopy learning for you! 😀
 

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