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Hard Drive Predictive Failures on Linux and Exadata

This post also applies to non-Exadata systems as hard drives work the same way in other storage arrays too -- just the commands you would use for extracting the disk-level metrics would be different. Scroll down to smartctl if you wan’t to skip the Oracle stuff and get straight to the Linux disk diagnosis commands.

I just noticed that one of our Exadatas had a disk put into “predictive failure” mode and thought to show how to measure why the disk is in that mode (as opposed to just replacing it without really understanding the issue ;-)

SQL> @exadata/cellpd
Show Exadata cell versions from V$CELL_CONFIG....

DISKTYPE             CELLNAME             STATUS                 TOTAL_GB     AVG_GB  NUM_DISKS   PREDFAIL   POORPERF WTCACHEPROB   PEERFAIL   CRITICAL
-------------------- -------------------- -------------------- ---------- ---------- ---------- ---------- ---------- ----------- ---------- ----------
FlashDisk            192.168.12.3         normal                      183         23          8
FlashDisk            192.168.12.3         not present                 183         23          8                     3
FlashDisk            192.168.12.4         normal                      366         23         16
FlashDisk            192.168.12.5         normal                      366         23         16
HardDisk             192.168.12.3         normal                    20489       1863         11
HardDisk             192.168.12.3         #ff0000;">warning - predictive       1863       1863         #ff0000;"> 1          1
HardDisk             192.168.12.4         normal                    22352       1863         12
HardDisk             192.168.12.5         normal                    22352       1863         12

So, one of the disks in storage cell with IP 192.168.12.3 has been put into predictive failure mode. Let’s find out why!