Testing the “limits” of WHS: 37 Drives = Fail
I had heard rumors of 32 drives being the limit, so I figured, why not? I had more than 32 1.5TB and 2TB disks in hot swap bays, and could easily handle the connectivity. Plus, since I am booting the new WHS from a VHD, I knew that WHS could mount VHD’s meaning I could somewhat quickly test 32+ disks with VHD’s and 32+ physical disks, and also virtualized and standard configurations. See the below picture for what this looks like:
The results on both old and new WHS boxes were the same, SCARY! The quick summary is if you have the need to run over 64TiB today, build a second WHS or something! Here is a quick summary of what happened when I installed over 32 disks on both the physical and virtualized WHS machines.
First I used the old WHS with 27 VHD’s and 10 “physical” disks (10x raid 6 2TB volumes):
Then I tried installing 37 physical drives on the new WHS, passing through the MBR formatted disks to the WHS virtual machine running in Hyper-V:
That is not something you want to see, ever, on a WHS that has data on it. I have backups, but copying TB’s of data is not fun.
Bottom line: I won’t be experimenting with more than 32 drives again anytime soon, or at least until WHS V2/ Vail comes around. It seems like the current version of WHS does not like that many drives.
Has anyone else tried over 32 drives in a WHS? If so, does anyone have workarounds for the errors encoutnered above?