Reliable operation of Promise Technology storage devices is dependent upon correct assembly, cabling, and configuration. Incorrect assembly or cabling can result in various intermittent errors that can appear as drive failure or path loss. Incorrect configuration can result in data loss and poor performance.

It is also important that only fully qualified hardware is used. A list of fully qualified hardware, can be found on the Promise Technology website. Please check the download section for the latest VTrak EClass compatibility list.



Ensure that the following are correctly seated and locked in place. It’s recommended to reseat all removable FRU before installation.

  • Controllers
  • Power supplies
  • Fan trays

Ensure that all cables are fully seated and locked in place

  • SAS cables to HBA (Host Bus Adapter) snapped into place
  • Ensure there is no debris in the MiniSAS connector when connecting cables
  • MiniSAS cables between JBODs or JBODs and the RAID Head network connectors snapped into place
  • Power cables are fully seated with wire lock in place
  • Drive trays should be fully seated and locked
  • For adjacent drive trays, one tray needs to be seated and locked before the next drive tray is inserted

Code Set

Firmware for RAID head and JBOD expansion should have the latest qualified specified builds

  • Firmware/Software for RAID head is version 3.29.0000.00 or newer
  • Expander on JBODs known as SEP should be version 1.07.0000.04
    (check from JBOD IO Module RS232 connection using “enclosure –v” command or via CLI using “sasdiag” command)


Array and LD configuration is set by the customer according to their requirements or use the recommend Apple Scripts. The following steps are to ensure LD integrity.

  • A full initialization should be run on every LD to ensure media is free of errors and parity is established. Initialization is data destructive.
  • Synchronization will build parity on read. Synchronization is not data destructive.
  • Recommend to finish all BGA (Background Activity) before running Final Cut Pro. BGA will increase overhead and can result in dropped frames.

Error Notification

Make sure one of the provided error notification methods is used

  • Set Email or other notification


General Troubleshooting

Known Issues

  • Low performance in the Mac OS environment may be cased by not having both ethernet management ports on the VTrak EClass attached and configured to access your network. Please be sure both ethernet management ports are attached and active.
    This issue is fixed in firmware update SR 2.4 and later.

Low Performance when using custom settings

  • Ensure LUN Affinity is enabled and LDs are load balanced
  • Check BBU hold time. Marginal BBU with less that 72 hour hold time will trigger the Adaptive Write Cache feature and will set the LD Write Cache to Write Thru thus impacting write performance
  • Ensure MDD LD (Leopard XSAN environment) has the following cache settings
    • Readpolicy set to ReadCache
    • Writepolicy set to Write Thru
  • Check PD “stats” command to insure that a particular PD is not the root cause. Check:
    • Average Response Time
    • Maximum Response Time
  • Make sure you have at least two FC paths going to each host
  • Verify FC Current Transfer Speed is set to 4Gbit

Controller Fail Over potential root cause

  • Controller Failure o Very rare seldom seen
  • Broken Path RAID Head to JBOD
    • Cable on respective SAS domain has been broken
    • Link counter errors on expander (cable etc)
  • Broke Path from RAID Head to AAMUX dual path o One of the 2 controllers can see the PD the other cannot
  • Controller in maintenance mode
    • Most of the above
    • Memory mismatch (we ship 2 GB so unlikely unless controller purchased outside the Apple channel)
    • Firmware mismatch, replacement controller could have shipped with newer or older firmware (this may happen)

Controller Fail Over diagnosis

  • Connect both Serial Management ports to each respective serial console to interrogate which controller is in maintenance mode. Reference Quick Install Guide for instructions.
  • If the controller is maintenance mode issue the “event” command to understand the root cause.

Power up Sequence

  • Power the JBOD first then power up the RAID Head. Not doing so can lead to offline LD (reference Promise or Apple KB on how to force PDs online). Use extra caution; forcing a PD online with stale data can lead to data loss.

Debug Prints for Promise FAE

  • Enable debug prints to the “warning” state on both controller via CLI using “debug” command
  • Have two Terminal consoles open and capture output of each console to a file
  • Save “SubSystemInfo” and send information to FAE
    • From CLI use "export" command (type "? export" for instructions)
    • From WebPAM PRO. Click on IP Icon then click on “Save”
    • See link below for detailed instructions to save Subsystem Information.

Link Counters on JBOD Expanders

  • Check respective IO Modules on JBODs to insure there are no errors being encountered on the links (for additional insight reference “Link Error Workaround Procedure for VTrak E-Class”).
  • From CLI on the RAID Head using “sasdiag” command or from each respective RS232 serial port on each JBOD IO Module (JBOD CLI) make sure there are no link errors being reported. If link errors are present clear the link errors using “link –a clear” command. After Link errors are cleared generate IO either from host side or via BGA if there is no data on the LD (Background Activity such as Init, Sync, Media Patrol)
  • Issue “link” command again. Link output via CLI should be free of errors
  • Repeat procedure on each respective JBOD IO Module
  • If Link errors persist do the following
    1. Power down VTrak Ex10 and JBOD and reseat the JBOD IO Module
    2. Replace cable
    3. If the issue continues replace JBOD IO module with a known good working module
    4. The end result should be Link output via CLI being free of errors

End Notes

The steps above will help ensure data integrity and protect against unnecessary and preventable storage problems. If assembly errors are found in a storage chassis already configured, they should be corrected as soon as possible.