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871 posts

Ultimate Geek

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#114995 9-Mar-2013 16:53
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Hey guys,

I've recently picked up a new client wanting me to upgrade their server. It's a HP ProLiant ML330 G6 running Windows SBS 2008, with a HP P410 RAID card and two 146 GB SAS 15k disks. 

Now, all they asked was for more disk space but while investigating I noticed whoever did their setup previously set up an array on one disk without using RAID, so there's a completely unused disk in there. Their staff do rotating off site backups nightly but I still feel uncomfortable about leaving the machine like this, especially when there's a perfectly good drive sitting there.

The system is currently partitioned 50% system/50% data, and both partitions are full. I'd like to migrate the data partition to 2x new SATA disks and expand the system partition. SAS disks are absolutely overkill for their requirements (<10 staff, used for Exchange, file sharing and a small database app).

What I imagine I need to do is image the drive, destroy the array, recreate it in RAID 1 then reimage the system back onto it, and then add another two disks to a separate RAID array and migrate the data partition onto that.

My questions:

1. What software should I use to perform this? I'm not sure if the RAID card is going to introduce any headaches.

2. If I set up the new data array with the same data and same drive letter as the previous partition, would that be an issue?

3. What's the best way to set up the arrays without an OS installed?

Cheers!




 


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3607 posts

Uber Geek

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  #777412 9-Mar-2013 17:09
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My suggestion would be to virtualize the operating system that is already on there using a physical to virtual migration to an external disk, perhaps your laptop etc. Then put the new drives in (SATA) and install your hypervisor e.g. Hyper-V or ESXi. If going ESXi use a USB on the motherbaord (if it's a newish HP it will have a USB female on the motherboard).

I did exactly this process around 6 months ago for a client with an old ML110 G5 (I think) who were running server 2003. I did the above process and then I could also run a PFsense router, Asterisk based phone system and also setup a new 2008 r2 server and migrate them accross - all on the same server.

It also means if they want to switch to datacentre hosting or install new servers further down the track you are already virtualized.




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  #777413 9-Mar-2013 17:12
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Hi,

Does the P410 have BBWC and/or cache modul?. If so the ACU can do an in place upgrade to a RAID 5, meaning you only need to add an 146gb extra drive. This gives you 290ish. Then extend the data drive as required

This assumes the drives are connected to the raid controller not the main board.


Might be easier than cloning

Clint

 
 
 
 




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Ultimate Geek

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  #777415 9-Mar-2013 17:21
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Zeon: My suggestion would be to virtualize the operating system that is already on there using a physical to virtual migration to an external disk, perhaps your laptop etc. Then put the new drives in (SATA) and install your hypervisor e.g. Hyper-V or ESXi. If going ESXi use a USB on the motherbaord (if it's a newish HP it will have a USB female on the motherboard).


Good idea. I'll have a look at some virtualisation options. It does indeed have a USB on the motherboard.  I only have the machine for another 24 hours., so worst case scenario with a virtual machine I can get them back up and going if things do go pear shaped.

clinty: Hi,

Does the P410 have BBWC and/or cache modul?. If so the ACU can do an in place upgrade to a RAID 5, meaning you only need to add an 146gb extra drive. This gives you 290ish. Then extend the data drive as required

This assumes the drives are connected to the raid controller not the main board. 


Might be easier than cloning

Clint


I did look into this, unfortunately it doesn't have a BBWC or cache module installed.




 


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  #777425 9-Mar-2013 17:57
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If the CPU supports it I would run Virtualize it like Zeon said and run Hyper-V Server 2012(Free and well ranked when compared to the Paid Version of VMware).

Even if you just make a clone of the current system in to a VM it allows for easy expansion & migration to new OS / cloud and any failures that you need to restore from in the future


On the disks..... Use the two 15k SAS drives in RAID 0 for Operating System Performance, and 2x Large SATA drives for Storage in RAID1 for redundancy.

Just remember make backups of the VM's so if you muck something you can just restore instead of starting fresh. :)

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  #777471 9-Mar-2013 19:39
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boby55: If the CPU supports it I would run Virtualize it like Zeon said and run Hyper-V Server 2012(Free and well ranked when compared to the Paid Version of VMware).

Even if you just make a clone of the current system in to a VM it allows for easy expansion & migration to new OS / cloud and any failures that you need to restore from in the future


On the disks..... Use the two 15k SAS drives in RAID 0 for Operating System Performance, and 2x Large SATA drives for Storage in RAID1 for redundancy.

Just remember make backups of the VM's so if you muck something you can just restore instead of starting fresh. :)


I honestly wouldn't suggest making the SAS disks RAID 0, too risky. The P410 will already have pretty good performance and it doesn't sound like the system is that heavily utilized. I do think the suggestion of using the SAS disks for system is a good re-use of them though.




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  #777472 9-Mar-2013 19:39
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boby55: If the CPU supports it I would run Virtualize it like Zeon said and run Hyper-V Server 2012(Free and well ranked when compared to the Paid Version of VMware).

Even if you just make a clone of the current system in to a VM it allows for easy expansion & migration to new OS / cloud and any failures that you need to restore from in the future


On the disks..... Use the two 15k SAS drives in RAID 0 for Operating System Performance, and 2x Large SATA drives for Storage in RAID1 for redundancy.

Just remember make backups of the VM's so if you muck something you can just restore instead of starting fresh. :)


I honestly wouldn't suggest making the SAS disks RAID 0, too risky. The P410 will already have pretty good performance and it doesn't sound like the system is that heavily utilized. I do think the suggestion of using the SAS disks for system is a good re-use of them though.




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871 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  #778734 12-Mar-2013 18:44
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Thanks for all the suggestions! Didn't want to mess with VM setup in the short time I had (1 weekend) with the machine. Ended up making a VMWare image and using Acronis True Image Home to migrate the SAS disks to a new SATA RAID array, and then back the other way. Windows forgot all of the shared folders so had to set that up again.

The damn caddys for the drives were $85 each at PBTech. What a rort.

Of course after I had done all that they asked about web filtering. Immediate regret that I didn't look into virtualisation at that point so I could run PFSense.




 


 
 
 
 


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  #778752 12-Mar-2013 19:10
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I don't think I would have run virtual in that environment. I think people "over virtualize". Nothing stopping you adding pfsense to another $50 PC you get from TM or I am sure you have something lying around.

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