IBM x3650 Server HDD upgrade

By myteched ·
have above type server with RAID5 (stripped data & parity) on 3 SAS 2.5" HDD of mere ~80GB.
I went thru past posting here on RAID5 rebuild but in my case the Server on W2K3 Std Ed runs ok but has just run out of space.
Can I swap - one at a time- with 300GB drive? would the rebuild occur automatically? Intention is to replace all 3 existing drives with bigger 300GB capacity.
I'm not that worried about rebuild time as the Server can be left offline for few days.
Comments much appreciated.

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All Answers

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In keeping with the definition of RAID 5,

by seanferd In reply to IBM x3650 Server HDD upgr ...

Yes, you should be able to replace one at a time without data loss, as RAID 5 can suffer a single failure without issue.

If your system supports hot spares & hot swapping, you should just be able to connect a new drive, then remove one. If not, shutdown and replace drive.

I have no idea if this will occur automatically, or if you need to issue a command. This may depend on whether this is hardware (looks like) or software RAID.

Ah, here:

edit: copy and paste link, as aspx URLs with non-standard reserved URI characters break normal URL HTML when posting in the forum. Thanks, MS.

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Well yes and no in answer to your question.

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to IBM x3650 Server HDD upgr ...

If you replace one drive at a time and allow the system to rebuild the Array it will only use the same size as the existing drives and not the full drive.

It would be better to Clone the System to some form of external storage replace the drives and then use the same Cloning Utility to rebuild the Server but this time use all of the available HDD Space.

Or maybe replace all the drives one at a time rebuild the RAID and then use a Partitioning Utility like G Parted to increase the size of the drives. I'm not sure how well that would work in a case like this though.

If you don't have a Cloning Utility it would probably be easier to just replace the drives and rebuild the system.


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Oooh. Very good point there.

by seanferd In reply to Well yes and no in answer ...

I dinna know that about drive space.

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thanx guys for the feedback

by myteched In reply to Oooh. Very good point the ...

I think will go by the external clone method and reload back the image. However, does this mean I'll have to first create fresh RAID5 set on new disks just prior to reimage process?

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Not necessarily

by TobiF In reply to thanx guys for the feedba ...

One RAID system is still one logical drive to the computer. So, if you can find one drive, which is at least as big as the combined logical drive, then that should do. Just have in mind that during this transition, you won't have the same level of fault tolerance, so carefully keep your old drives until everything has rebuilt correctly.

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Depends if this is a Hardware or Software Raid

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to thanx guys for the feedba ...

If it's a Software Raid you may have problems but then again may not.

If it's a Hardware Raid it should just be a matter of clone swap the drives and clone back as the RAID is already set.


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post upgrade status

by myteched In reply to Depends if this is a Hard ...

performed clone of existing smaller capacity RAID5 to external media; attached bigger capacity disks; had to re-create array and RAID5; recloned back the image onto new set successfully however:
on Server restart/reboot W2K3 Std doesn't go past 'boot phase' ie. black screen with Windows Server 2003 and dice moving left-->right.
Will I have to perform inplace repair?
Any thoughts guys?

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no advice just what to see what everyone recommends

by CG IT In reply to post upgrade status
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pls ignore my earlier post

by myteched In reply to no advice just what to s ...

Server on post-upgrade of higher capacity SAS drives boots up now OK. Earlier it wasn't booting due to reason that onboard RAID Controller was still 'auto-synchronising' the array. Once this process was completed successfully, OS boot-up was normal.
Just to summarise:
* cloned existing set of RAID5 array to ext media
* swapped with higher capacity drives
* rebuild/initialise fresh RAID5 array
* clone back to new array set
* allowed array controller to auto-sync
* few hours later, booted the Server OK.

All feedback & comments much appreciated.


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Now that it's working

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to no advice just what to s ...

Have you run any Diagnostics on the HDD's in the new Array to check their function?

It's not going to hurt and may save you a lot of time latter.


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