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SoftRaid 5.8.2 - Mac won't boot after install & driver update

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(@softraid-support)
Member Admin

I ran into this also and after a lot of thrashing around with Safe boots and Recovery boots and verbose boots and disconnecting every peripheral in sight, I succeeded by reinstalling Catalina from Recovery Mode, something that I tend to resist doing.

I would also note that at the same moment when softRAID requested a restart for the new driver, the system put up a dialog that softRAID was requesting an extension. The latter took me to the security panel of system preferences where I enabled OWC (and Dropbox which for some reason had joined the party). Then restarted and that's where the reboot failed and stuck at the end of the bar.

I agree that some very serious warning should have been given to avoid so much pain and wasted time.

On my system running Catalina (MacOS 10.05.3), I permitted the installer but when the system rebooted the boot routine and subsequent attempts to boot stalled at the same point. I was eventually forced to boot from the Recovery drive, and reinstall MacOS 10.15.3. After regaining the ability to boot the system, I disabled the boot drive protection and only then was I able to successfully install the softRAID 5.8.2 drivers and boot my system.

It would appear to be a simple matter for the installer to Catalina and display a warning about the boot drive protection issue until it is resolved or failing that a mandatory ReadMe when launching SoftRAID 5.8.2 the first time. Admittedly I might have blown past such a warning but on the other hand, it might have saved me some worry, time, and aggravation.

Had there been a clue, yes we would have and will build some additional notification in the next update (assuming we see why there is a problem with High Sierra)

Thanks

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Posted : 11/02/2020 7:17 pm
(@tonyp)
New Member Customer

I figured since I had issues and found a workaround, I'd share.

I too installed the 5.8.2 update, ran the driver updater, and couldn't get my Mac to completely finish the startup process. (MacPro 2013, macOS 10.15.2).

I did indeed get the System Extension blocked window, went into System Preferences -> Privacy and allowed it before restart. I did notice the developer had changed to OWC.

To fix the inability to boot normally, I re-booted into Recovery Mode and used Terminal to remove all the extension files that had been installed just before the restart: OWC_SATA_Command.kext, OWC_SCSI_Device_0E.kext, OWC_SCSI_Device.kext, OWC_SMART_Library.plugin, SoftRAID.kext. They all had modification dates and times of a few minutes ago.

Upon restart, I was able to boot completely and revert back to 5.8.1.

I've since updated to macOS 10.15.3. Felt confident and had time to kill so I figured I'd try the 5.8.2 update again.

I was once again presented with the System Extension blocked dialog (with the OWC developer name), but when going to System Preferences -> Privacy, I found no button to approve. I performed this installation right after a restart of the machine.

Instead of clicking the Restart button from the dialog that was presented after the driver update finished, I forced quit the SoftRaid app and re-launched. I was once again prompted for admin privs, and it was once again updating the driver. Only this time, I didn't receive a notice about blocked System Extensions, but instead a new dialog asking to allow SoftRaid access to my external drives. I hadn't seen this before. I allowed the access, the driver install completed, and it said I was ready to go. I was also NOT prompted to restart.

I shut my Mac down. Counted to 10. Powered back on and it booted just fine.

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Posted : 12/02/2020 9:16 pm
(@crhendo)
Active Member Customer

I also experienced the same problem on my 2012 Mac Mini after upgrading to 5.8.2 with the boot stalling at the same point (progress bar reached the end). Reinstall 10.15.3 was the fastest method to recover.

When is all this going to stop?

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Posted : 13/02/2020 12:04 am
(@softraid-support)
Member Admin

I will try to smooth those instructions out in case I see another case of this.

Catalina has been a mess for us. From the changes in the "final" beta before shipping, to the continual changes in how notarization works.

I would certainly rather be testing RAID 6 and new features than this!!

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Posted : 13/02/2020 12:51 am
(@null-root)
Eminent Member Customer

Just chiming in to say I'm having the same issue. Deeply troubling considering this Thunderbay is primary storage for our work files.

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Posted : 13/02/2020 10:09 am
(@softraid-support)
Member Admin

I agree and will do all I can can to help you get started. We know the cause, notarization is not working correctly and the driver is not loading.

If the PDF does not work, try "uninstall SoftRAID" from utilities menu. (This will erase your serial number, though.

Then go through the steps in the PDF and "Allow" OWC as an Identified Developer. Should work then

https://www.softraid.com/pages/support/5.8_Volumes_Not_Mounting.pdf

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Posted : 13/02/2020 11:33 am
(@aztyytza)
New Member Customer

I recently purchased OWC Express 4M2.

iMac27 2019
Catalina 10.15.3

Driver installation fails. After that, when you restart, it will not boot.

https://srforums.wpengine.com/pages/support/5.8.2_Volumes_Not_Mounting.pdf

I read this and followed the instructions, but the driver installation always failed. And it will not boot.
if uninstall before restart, it will not boot.

I'm off. There is no point in purchasing OWC Express 4M2.

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Posted : 15/02/2020 10:21 am
(@softraid-support)
Member Admin

Is your machine in a situation where it is not bootable?

How did you get it to boot both times?

Can you do a check in internet recovery mode with terminal?

I think I know the cause of this, but it is a theory, I do not know for sure.

We call a command with "kextstat" to delete the prior extensions cache after installing (updating) the SoftRAID driver.

Apple informed us that the command we are using was deprecated, and we need to use a new command, kextstat -invalidate, to tell the OS to delete the cache and rebuild it. We implemented this change in 5.8.2.

(the extensions cache is what OS X uses to speed up booting, all the extensions are pre-loaded into a special file, and load very quickly, rather than reading each file during boot and loading them individually)

My suspicion is there is a bug in this command that is deleting more files than it should, or is damaging for example, the /Library/ directory.

If we could prove this to Apple, we can send a bug report and fix it so the next person won't get this issue. It has happened to about 5 other users, so it is rare, but should never happen.

Let us know.

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Posted : 15/02/2020 11:51 am
(@andresena)
Eminent Member Customer

Just chiming in to say I had the same issue: boot routine not working

Mac OS X 10.15.3
Imac 5K 27" late 2015

Followed the steps described at the PDF file, but when the system rebooted the boot routine and subsequent attempts to boot stalled at the same point. Booted in Recovery mode and reinstalled MacOS 10.15.3. Boot routine OK.

Opened System Preferences and checked: SoftRAID 5.8.2 has "Full Disk Access“

Launched SoftRAID 5.8.2. No line appeared saying “System software from developer ‘Other World Computing’ was blocked from loading.” . Updated SoftRAID driver.

Everything have been working fine since.

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Posted : 15/02/2020 7:42 pm
(@aztyytza)
New Member Customer

Press Command and R to launch and easily return with a time machine rollback.

I also tested on Catalina, which was just installed for verification.

The same is true until the driver update fails. After that, I did not restart immediately, but restarted SoftRaid and the driver update went well. And even if it restarts, it starts well.

But another problem occurred. Catalina for verification is installed on the external disk. When I removed the external disk and started on the Mac of the main body, it did not start brilliantly.

I tried again with iMac. Even if SoftRAID is restarted, the message prompting to install the driver is not displayed for some reason. Of course, after that, it fails to start.

It is certain that the driver update is a major issue, starting from 5.8.2. You should fix it as soon as possible.

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Posted : 15/02/2020 10:59 pm
(@softraid-support)
Member Admin

Can you leave this as is for a day? I want to gather some information on your internal system.

I want to gather a few pieces of info from your /Library and /Library/Extensions folders.

The main difference in 5.8.2 that could be responsible here is following the Apple developer recommendation to change our method of deleting the extensions cache, to using the new command, "kextcache -invalidate". There is likely to be an issue here. It is only affecting a very small amount of systems, so it might be difficult to find the difference that causes this on one system, but not another. that is our task. ;-)

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Posted : 15/02/2020 11:50 pm
(@softraid-support)
Member Admin

Just chiming in to say I had the same issue: boot routine not working

Mac OS X 10.15.3
Imac 5K 27" late 2015

Everything have been working fine since.

Can you run this command in terminal.app? It will confirm that the 5.8.2 driver is loading:

kextstat -b com.softraid.driver.SoftRAID

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Posted : 15/02/2020 11:54 pm
(@aztyytza)
New Member Customer

My Extensions folders.

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Posted : 16/02/2020 3:45 am
(@andresena)
Eminent Member Customer

5.8.2 driver is loading.

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Posted : 16/02/2020 4:53 am
(@softraid-support)
Member Admin

If the driver is loading (per the kextcache command above, then there is another issue, perhaps a directory problem. You need to send us a SoftRAID tech support file to support at softraid.

When we see that, it will be easier to diagnose the problem.

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Posted : 16/02/2020 11:18 am
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