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Windows 7 64bit - Fibre San Problems

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Matt Wright
Windows 7 64bit - Fibre San Problems
on Mar 11, 2010 at 5:46:17 pm

Hi There.

I am hoping that someone (Bob, maybe, please be nice) can help me, I seem to be chasing my tail, getting our fibre system back up and working.

So the story so far.

I have a Xyratex F5402e Fibre raid, with 12 x 1TB drives attached, These are raided as 2 x raid 5 arrays of 6 drives, each array is a single LUN, and each LUN is available to our systems, as a 4.8TB drive. So each system will see 2 separate LUNs each being 4.8TB, which we will then software stripe in the OS, to make a single volume of near 9TB.

All the systems are Windows 7 Professional 64 bit systems, these are all MacPro’s running BootCamp, and at the moment, I am just trying to connect up 3 systems.

One of the systems is running a dual channel Qlogic fibre 2464 card, and the other 2 systems are running a single channel Qlogic 2460 fibre cards. These fibre connections run into a Sanbox5600 and from there 2 connections to the Dual Controller 5402e Raid. Also each system is connected to a 1GB Network Switch (we are using MetaSan, and this is for the MetaData, and all systems can Ping each other.)

So my problem is, that I just cannot get the systems to work properly.

I booted up one system (system A), and formatted the drives as a stripe set, I have set the drives as GPT and of course they are Dynamic disks, as they are being striped.

I then turn off system A, and boot up system B, I can import the foreign drives, and I can access the stripe set, I then turn off System B, and Boot system C, again I import the foreign drives, and I can access the stripe set.

So all the systems can see the Fibre Raid.

If I now turn off system C, and boot system A, I now have to re-import the stripe set again, as the system is seeing it as a foreign drive set. When I was on XP64, this drive set would automatically be imported. (although in that case the SAN was MBR not GPT, and thus smaller)

At this point I install MetaSan 4.2.1xxxx (the latest version anyway) on system A, whilst System B & C are turned off. The install seems happy and I create a SAN, I reboot the system, activate the software, and I can access the protected SAN quite happily.

I leave system A on, and power up system B – (Again, when system B boots it CANNOT see the Drive Set, unless I import the foreign disks again), so I import the foreign drives, and I can see on the drives in Disk Manager. So I now install Metasan, and the install seems to go o.k. I specify to join a SAN, and it shows me the SAN name, which I select, I reboot, and then activate the software. I do the exactly the same for system C. SO as far as I can tell, everything should be fine.

I am actually getting a couple of issues, the first issue, is that if I now reboot System A, it will boot, but the SAN will be accessed over MetaSan LAN Failover, not over the Fibre connection, also the stripe will not show up in disk management, it will just show a foreign stripe set. If I import this stripe set, the San will bounce back to using the fibre and not the Lan Failover. So basically on all systems every time they boot they will default to LAN Failover, and until we re-import the foreign stripe set, they will stay as LAN connected.

The second issue, is even worse, basically although the systems seem fine and can all see the SAN, randomly when one of the systems browses the SAN, the explorer window in Windows 7 will freeze, and say Not Responding, this will freeze the system for about a minute, in most cases the system will have to be rebooted, in some cases, windows explorer will just die, and restart itself after about a minute. This error happens very consistently. Basically one of the three systems will crash with this error within 2 minutes of using the SAN

I have spent a good couple of days trying to alleviate these problems and really hope someone can shed some light on my problems. I hope that this email makes sense, it’s always very hard to remember all the steps when writing out the email.

Thanks so much, I hope someone can help, its driving me nuts.


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Bob Zelin
Re: Windows 7 64bit - Fibre San Problems
on Mar 11, 2010 at 8:25:00 pm

Hi Matt -
have you contacted Tiger Technology ? They make MetaSAN, and they have great support. I unfortunately do not know the answer to your question.

Bob Zelin

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Matt Wright
Re: Windows 7 64bit - Fibre San Problems
on Mar 11, 2010 at 8:51:54 pm


Yes, I'm in communication with Tiger support, they haven't been able to help so far, and its been 3 days now, of trying different things. I thought I would try some forums, just in case anyone has come across similar problems, or any hints that I can follow up on.

Thanks anyway Bob

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christian urbanski
Re: Windows 7 64bit - Fibre San Problems
on Mar 12, 2010 at 11:21:38 am

Well...welcome the nightmare :D
I´m in the same situation like you.With 7 pc-client and 1 pc-server.
I´m in mail contact with tiger tech,and sending info of the stations,memory dumps etc...and i suppose they are working in the problem.
The disk managment problem appears sometimes in our systems,not all time.
But the 2º problem the freeze issue apeears in all machine´s after a windows update ( is a supposition )but the server works fine.Also we´ve the theory is a sumatory of a windows update + adobe cs4 pack.
one mac is under the san too,and works fine.
I hope tiger make a fix soon....

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Borko Grujic
Re: Windows 7 64bit - Fibre San Problems
on Mar 28, 2010 at 8:05:50 am

Are you using dedicated meta server?

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Mark Crabtree
Re: Windows 7 64bit - Fibre San Problems
on Apr 21, 2010 at 7:10:50 pm

We have an Atto 8500 8gig fiber san. Three edit stations and one dedicated metadata master. The master is an 8 core intel machine running win xp 64 and the edit systems are 8 core intel machines running windows 7 64 bit. We are editing with Adobe cs4 Premiere and After Effects. We were getting a problem when all machines were running xp 64 that when you saved a project it would not really save. We upgraded one of the three edit stations to windows 7 as part of our beta testing cs5. We noticed that the windows 7 machine did not have this problem. So we decided to update all of our machines to widows 7. We had huge issues with slow file transfers, slow file reading with all machines as window 7, so we rolled back our metadata master to xp 64. This solved most of our problems but it is far from perfect. We get sometimes slow to connect to the san, we get sometimes slow file reads. We did search the web on windows 7 issues and found certain "fixes", like the best drivers for using legacy hardware like firewire drives, and like setting windows explorer not show too much detail when looking at file structures, but nothing really fixes all our issues. There seems to be a lot of agreement that windows 7 has issues with large files. This is why we moved our metadata master back to xp 64. We also made a separate ethernet network using each computers second ethernet connection and a separate business class switch to keep all the metadata away from our internet traffic. Still we have issues connecting and we have issues running at performance speeds. When only one edit machine is running, making it the metadata master, we have NO problems. We've talked to Tiger as well, even letting them be a remote user, but they have not found any problems. Anyone have any ideas?

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