Warning About Seagate Diagnostics & Mountain Lion

Just was setting up my new awesome, cheap RAID backup array. All was going well. Took an old, unibody plastic MacBook and put Mountain Lion on it. I then created an encrypted CoreStorage RAID-0 array of two 3 TB Seagate Backup Plus (formerly GoFlex drives).

Now I have a 6 TB Time Capsule which is encrypted end-to-end. If I need to backup/restore in a hurry, I can plug any machine directly into the RAID via USB 3.0, and Time Machine will still backup to the sparsebundles created for each machine. Otherwise, it will backup over Wi-Fi and Gigabit Ethernet.

To help monitor the drives remotely, I then downloaded and installed Seagate Diagnostics.

Boom. Kernel panic.

Turns out Seagate still offers the old, cruddy 1.0 version of Seagate Diagnostics, that is incompatible with Mountain Lion. The updated 1.1.2 of Seagate Drive Settings (the successor to Seagate Diagnostics) is what you want, but there is no standalone download.

What you need, is to download the GoFlex for Mac original software installer, and run Seagate Diagnostics that comes with that. It’s the latest version for both GoFlex and Backup Plus drives. If you are going to use 3TB+ drives Thunderbolt, however, you will need the 3TB/4TB Thunderbolt driver for Mac, which is also a separate download.

Now, if you will excuse me, I have to go clean up the mess made on my boot drive.

Afterword: While I got the app working, I discovered that there isn’t any way to monitor SMART status on FreeAgent USB drives very well, once they are added to an encrypted RAID array on Mountain Lion. Today’s tools don’t see the drives, including Seagate Drive Settings, since they “become” part of a CoreStorage volume. Even SMARTreporter and smartmontools don’t list the array’s drives.

As such, the only way to perform SMART diagnostics, that I’ve found, is to offline the RAID array and test the drives separately. Not an ideal solution, but I’m not complaining that much… it wasn’t even possible to create an encrypted CoreStorage RAID until recently.

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  1. Thanks. This was useful in preparing to upgrade my 2007 iMac to Mountain Lion.