Avoid problems with Storport for host bus adapter removable storage

Storport, which replaced SCSIport as the storage driver in Windows Server 2003, offers improved performance, reliability and manageability over its predecessor.

That's the good news. The bad news is that Storport can produce a number of peculiar problems unless the newest version is installed.

In Windows storage architecture, Storport sits directly above the hardware level and connects to the miniport driver provided by each storage device manufacturer. Storport connects to the device class driver, and from there to the rest of the operating system.

When you use Storport for host bus adapter (HBA) removable storage, you may experience a number of problems.

For example, when you surprise-remove a Storport adapter, as much as 4 MB of non-paged (Kernel mode) memory may not be released. If you get a STOP D1 error when an adapter is removed, it's a sign that there's a problem.

What is happening is that Storport is not correctly maintaining the list of adapters it manages. Normally, Storport adds adapters to the list as they are created, and the adapter list points to memory that is freed or reallocated. However, when an adapter is removed, the list may not be properly updated, resulting in memory corruption or an error.

The other symptom is that the Fibre Channel bus type is incorrectly identified, and the BusTypeScsi bus setting is ignored.

You can solve the problem by using the latest version of Storport

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-- 5.2.3790.274 -- which is available as a hotfix from Microsoft. It comes in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows Server 2003.

For more information about the problem and to obtain the latest version of Storport, see KB article 891793.

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About the Author:
Rick Cook has been writing about mass storage since the days when the term meant an 80 K floppy disk. The computers he learned on used ferrite cores and magnetic drums. For the last 20 years he has been a freelance writer specializing in storage and other computer issues.

This was first published in September 2005

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