ONTAP 9.14

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How hot spare disks work

A hot spare disk is a disk that is assigned to a storage system and is ready for use, but is not in use by a RAID group and does not hold any data.

If a disk failure occurs within a RAID group, the hot spare disk is automatically assigned to the RAID group to replace the failed disks. The data of the failed disk is reconstructed on the hot spare replacement disk in the background from the RAID parity disk. The reconstruction activity is logged in the /etc/message file and an AutoSupport message is sent.

If the available hot spare disk is not the same size as the failed disk, a disk of the next larger size is chosen and then downsized to match the size of the disk that it is replacing.

Spare requirements for multi-disk carrier disk

Maintaining the proper number of spares for disks in multi-disk carriers is critical for optimizing storage redundancy and minimizing the amount of time that ONTAP must spend copying disks to achieve an optimal disk layout.

You must maintain a minimum of two hot spares for multi-disk carrier disks at all times. To support the use of the Maintenance Center and to avoid issues caused by multiple concurrent disk failures, you should maintain at least four hot spares for steady state operation, and replace failed disks promptly.

If two disks fail at the same time with only two available hot spares, ONTAP might not be able to swap the contents of both the failed disk and its carrier mate to the spare disks. This scenario is called a stalemate. If this happens, you are notified through EMS messages and AutoSupport messages.

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