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Thread: disk hot swap advice

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    disk hot swap advice

    Hi

    I have recently added an eSATA PCI card to my PC (Windows Vista SP1) and this made me think about hot swapping disks and wondered if this was possible for the new external disk.

    The motherboard is an Intel DG965WH. The onboard SATA ports are used for a RAID 10 4 disks + 1 spare disk via Intel RAID manager. The last port is used for a Startech.com removable disk drive drawer.

    As I had no spare internal ports I puchased a Startech.com PCI Express single port eSATA card. This shows up as Silicon Image 3531 SATA controller under device manager. I have plugged this via the eSATA connection to a Western Digital My Studio and have configued the two drives in this to be mirrored.

    The external device does not show up in "safely remove hardware". Does anybody have any thoughts on if this can be setup so I can safely remove the "Western Digital My Studio" and then add a different eSATA device without having to shutdown Windows?

    Many thanks

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    Re: disk hot swap advice

    eSata is hot swap compatible, go to device manager then properties of the external drive, then policies, then tick the optimize for quick removal, that will ensure your data is safe. I believe that will be fine, i hope someone else can confirm this.

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    Re: disk hot swap advice

    Many thanks for the prompt reply.

    I had look in device manager. The Policies tab is grayed out so can not be changed but for the eSATA drive optimized for performance is checked and it does say: "To disconnect this device from the computer click the safely remove hardware icon in the taskbar notification area."

    Unfortunatley the only item in safely remove hardware is a USB card reader.

    I am puzzled by this. Any ideas?

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    • ma10's system
      • Motherboard:
      • ASUS P5W64 WS Pro
      • CPU:
      • Q6600
      • Memory:
      • 4gb Corsair TwinX XMS2
      • Storage:
      • Adaptec 5405+ICP5165 RAID5
      • Graphics card(s):
      • ATI 3850HD
      • PSU:
      • Corsair HX620W
      • Case:
      • Rebel9 + Sata Hot-Swap Cages
      • Operating System:
      • XP/Ubuntu 64bit
      • Monitor(s):
      • Hyundai ImageQuest Q17
      • Internet:
      • 24mb ADSL2

    Re: disk hot swap advice

    eSata is supposedly "hot-plug" technology but it also depends if the hardware manufacturer implements it properly in its drivers.

    I know that other people have reported that the drivers included with motherboard on-board eSata ports usually allows for hot-plug but not so sure with your add-on card. Best to check if there is any more info/drivers on the manufacturers' website or even at Silicon Image's website...

    Failing that, a quick google found this little app that supposedly helps you to "Safely Remove Hardware"... although I don't know much about this nor have I tried it myself so try at your own peril!

    HotSwap!

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    Re: disk hot swap advice

    I've asked the question over on StarTech's web site. Hopefully they have some more information but there are no driver updates available at StarTech for the card.

    If that fails I'll try Silicon Image next.

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    Re: disk hot swap advice

    I have had a reply from StarTech.com who have confirmed that the PCI Express single port eSATA card supports hot swap so this must mean the Western Digital My Studio does not support hot swapping via eSATA connection :-(

  7. #7
    Registered+
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    • ma10's system
      • Motherboard:
      • ASUS P5W64 WS Pro
      • CPU:
      • Q6600
      • Memory:
      • 4gb Corsair TwinX XMS2
      • Storage:
      • Adaptec 5405+ICP5165 RAID5
      • Graphics card(s):
      • ATI 3850HD
      • PSU:
      • Corsair HX620W
      • Case:
      • Rebel9 + Sata Hot-Swap Cages
      • Operating System:
      • XP/Ubuntu 64bit
      • Monitor(s):
      • Hyundai ImageQuest Q17
      • Internet:
      • 24mb ADSL2

    Re: disk hot swap advice

    Did StarTech offer anything more apart from it does support Hot-plug? e.g. driver/instructions?

    in theory, if it supports hot-plug then it doesn't matter what hard drive you wanna hot-plug as it is solely dependant on the sata controller/driver/OS to manage the whole process....

    did you have a look at that app HotSwap that I mentioned earlier? Apparently, near the top of his page in the "About HotSwap" section the author refers to a Silicon Image knowedgebase article that suggests that all their sata controllers are "hot-swappable" and gave some basic instructions on how to "hot-swap"....

    Assuming this was the basis of the author's inspiration for his hot-swap app then it should be legit... check on google if other people have used the app and maybe you could try it??

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