RAID-5 Disk Replacement...

Discussion in 'OT Technology' started by dtfromep, Feb 7, 2008.

  1. dtfromep

    dtfromep New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2003
    Messages:
    1,674
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Saint Paul, MN
    ...for capacity expansion.

    I have a 7x320GB RAID-5 array, and it has the capability for online capacity expansion (performed ~4 times already). The problem is that I am running out of space here, and am out of ports to add additional drives after #8 is installed.

    Is it possible to replace the 320's with 750's without losing data? Have you tried it? Sources?
     
  2. 5Gen_Prelude

    5Gen_Prelude There might not be an "I" in the word "Team", but

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2000
    Messages:
    14,519
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC, CANADA
    Yes you can. Of course only the first 320 MBs would be seen so that's probably not very helpful.
     
  3. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2005
    Messages:
    19,712
    Likes Received:
    0
    You can do this, I've done it on one of my old servers at work, but it's tricky. Basically, if you don't want the computer to go offline at all during the process, you're going to replace the disks one at a time, allowing the array to rebuild itself completely after each disk is replaced before replacing the next one.

    Once that's done, the next step depends on the policy of your RAID controller; if it automatically expands the array to include all the extra space on the new disks, then you can skip this step; otherwise, you need to destroy the array and then reassemble it EXACTLY like it used to be, except that the size of the array should be based on the size of the new disks. DO NOT INITIALIZE THE NEW ARRAY; if you do, the data you just spent god-knows-how-long copying will get erased.

    The third step is to reboot and use something like Norton PartitionMagic to expand the partition(s) on the array to make the extra space available for use.

    There. Wasn't that fun?
     
  4. DAN513

    DAN513 OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2003
    Messages:
    10,089
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    204
    I did it at work during the summer on one of my dell servers running SBS 2003.

    Replaced the drives one at a time, let the backup run overnight, then replaced the next drive. I did that till all 5 drives were done, then ran Acronis disc director server to expand the array.
     
  5. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2005
    Messages:
    19,712
    Likes Received:
    0
    ^^^ Yep, that's the short version of what I said. So that makes two who say it can work.
     
  6. 5Gen_Prelude

    5Gen_Prelude There might not be an "I" in the word "Team", but

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2000
    Messages:
    14,519
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC, CANADA
    I guess there's no reason it wouldn't work, I'd just be scared shitless expanding the partition after you're done. It's something I wouldn't even attempt if I didn't have a backup.
     
  7. dtfromep

    dtfromep New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2003
    Messages:
    1,674
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Saint Paul, MN
    Expanding the partition is easy using built-in NTFS tools. Basically the command is "diskpart", then select your volume, and use the "extend" command. I have done it several times without issue, and it only takes a matter of seconds once the array has grown.
     
  8. 5Gen_Prelude

    5Gen_Prelude There might not be an "I" in the word "Team", but

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2000
    Messages:
    14,519
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC, CANADA
    Oh I know it's easy - I've ruined two volumes because of it.
     
  9. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2005
    Messages:
    19,712
    Likes Received:
    0
    That only works on dynamic volumes, and only if those dynamic volumes weren't ever converted from basic volumes, and only if the OS isn't installed on the volume. Which makes it pretty fucking useless, all in all.
     
  10. dtfromep

    dtfromep New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2003
    Messages:
    1,674
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Saint Paul, MN
    Well, the OS part is true, but this array is what I have been expanding for years using above commands:

    [​IMG]

    (my host is being retarded, so this is through public uploader)
     
  11. deusexaethera

    deusexaethera OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2005
    Messages:
    19,712
    Likes Received:
    0
    Huh. I could've sworn Microsoft said it wouldn't work on basic volumes.
     
  12. dtfromep

    dtfromep New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2003
    Messages:
    1,674
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Saint Paul, MN
    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/325590

    Straight from the source...just needs to be contiguous space.
     

Share This Page