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Raid 1 on Sever 2003

By raymondogden58 ·
I'm in the process of setting up a Raid 1 mirror on SBS 2003.

After spending the last 2 days reading about RAID and the steps for implementing the software support for it on this platform, I'm confused.

I have two identical drives.

I've divided the first drive into 4 paritions:

One for the OS, one for data, one for user shares and a small one at the end for logs.

I converted this drive and it's empty twin to Dynamic discs.

Now the directions say that I right-click on the Volume and choose "Add Mirror".

I assumed this meant I would right-click on the gray part that represents the entire physical drive, because all the articles I've read on RAID refer to mirroring whole disks.

But the option doesn't appear there. If I right click on each of the partitions in the first drive the "Add Mirror" option appears.

So I add the first parition and everything looks like it's going OK. I go to add a mirror of the second parition to the second drive and there's the yellow triangle with an exclamation point in it on the selection for the target drive.


No specific warning is listed anywhere, but I have to assume that some risk is present. It does, however, allow me to add the mirror, as well as the mirrors for the remaining 2 partitions.

Now the graph for the second drive looks identical to the first and all of the elements in it say they are "Resynching".

The yellow triangle is present on the gray part of the graph which represents the whole drive.

So my questions are:

Am I doing anythig wrong?

Does RAID work with multi-paritioned drives?

If so, does doing it this way effect performance?

Will the yellow triangle go away when all the partitions are done sycning?

As I was adding mirrors to each partition the wizard gave me a choice of which drive to use for each one. Could I have the mirrors for different paritions on different drives?

If so, and the paritions are much smaller than the target drives, can I still use the remaining empty space on them?

Do pancakes grow on apple trees?

:)

Thanks in advance for your help.

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All Answers

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couple thoughts....

by ---TK--- In reply to Raid 1 on Sever 2003

What hardware platform are you running on? Is it a HP, dell, Custom made? If its custom made, what Motherboard do you have? Model number would be sufficient.

With my experience in dealing with RAID's there are a couple steps in the process.
1. Config the BIOS to load the RAID controler
2. Build the RAID in the Controller, usually after POST hits you will be prompted to do so.
3. boot to the CD, hit F6, load the RAID drivers, create a partition size, and load the OS.
4. Once the OS is installed, you should only see one drive. and you will need to install the RAID drivers.

In your case, since you have already loaded the OS, I would make a backup ghost image the drive, and take the steps I stated above above (generic guess, i don't know what hardware you have it a little different for each system). When you create the RAID in the controller, this process will **** away your current OS (which is why we ghosted the drive) install the OS, and ghost over the fresh OS, load the RAID drivers and you should be good to go.

Hopefully this helped, any questions feel free to post up. Stating your system make and model would allow us to be more specific...

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2nd post

by ---TK--- In reply to couple thoughts....

once you have your RAID properly installed, you can partition out the drive to your liking, the normal way...

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Software RAID

by NormH3 In reply to couple thoughts....

It sounds as if he is trying to implement software RAID too me.

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More Info

by raymondogden58 In reply to Software RAID

Yes, sorry.

I was refering to setting up software raid in the Disk Management section of the Computer Management tool in SBS 2003.

And once all the the Volumes finished syncing everything seemed to be OK. When I reboot the server now it asks me after POST whether I want to boot from the primary drive or the Mirror.

So I think it's all good. At least I believe the OS parition is being properly mirrored. I really don't know what scheme the other three partitions are being mirrored with, if at all.

Here's what's showing in Disk Management console...

http://www.fileden.com/files/2007/9/17/1438454/Drives.PNG

However, everyone's questions got me to thinking. This is really the first time I'm messed around with SATA and RAID and I've been trying to figure out if my MB has native RAID support or not.

So here's what's involved:

Shuttle Prima SP45H7 Bare Bones kit with a Intel P45 + ICH10 chipset.

http://us.shuttle.com/barebone/Models/SP45H7.html

2 Western Digital WD RE2 160gb SATA Hard Drives

http://www.westerndigital.com/en/products/products.asp?driveid=403

2 Western Digital EXTHD 500gb eSATA drives

http://www.westerndigital.com/en/products/products.asp?DriveID=334

I installed the OS once without doing anything special. When I stuck the disk in to install the MB drivers the setup program that auto-runs mentions nothing about SATA or RAID intallation.

But then later I browsed the disk manually and found a directory named AHCI_RAID_drivers. I remembered when looking through the BIOS that there was a selection under the OnChip SATA device section to choose between IDE and AHCI modes.

Originally I left it on IDE. I tried switching it to AHCI and it wouldn't read my drives anymore. Since I had some time to kill I decided to try an experiment.

I copied the contents of the AHCI_RAID-drivers folder onto a floppy, reformatted the drives
and re-installed the OS using the F6 option to load the supplied drivers.

Everything appears to work fine. In the device manager the controller shows up as "Intel(R) ICH10R SATA AHCI".

Now this is what's confusing me. From what I've read, the difference between ICH10 and ICH10R is that the latter supports RAID.

The Spec sheet found at the URL above for the MB makes no mention of ICH10R or RAID support. Yet the controller shows up in the device manager as ICH10R.

When I boot the machine, after POST, a page appears that says...

"JMicron Technology Corp. PCIE-to-SATAII / IDE RAID Controller BIOS v1.06.70

Detect drives done, no any drive found."

(apparently English was the author's second language)

To make things more confusing, I've tried two different CD/DVD drives in the setup. One being a SATA drive and the other being an IDE. When the SATA drive is installed I get the "No any drives found" message. If I install the IDE drive it stops for a second and lists the hardware ID string for this Sony DVD burner. "0DD0: Sony DVD RW DRU-800A"

At one point I also tried installing XP using the F6 method as well. Under that setup a JMicron controller showed up in the device list as well as the Intel ICH10R. But that's not the case with SBS 2003.

There was also an option to install the "Intel Matrix Storage Console" on the installation CD. It wouldn't install before I used the F6 option on my second SBS 2003 OS attempt. After including the AHCI drivers it did install, but I can't seem to figure out what it can be used for. Here's a link to what it looks like...

http://www.fileden.com/files/2007/9/17/1438454/Matrix.PNG

The only functions I've discovered are that if I right-click on any of the drives an option appears to "Activate Port LED". Which is apparently supposed to help me locate which port a drive is attached to.

Anyway, I'm not really sure what's going on. If I had to guess I'd say my MB has no native RAID support.

All I'm really concerned with now is whether or not my ENTIRE first drive, and all of the paritions on it, are being properly mirrored.

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test your raid 1 config

by andrasbabos In reply to More Info

It's very easy to test your raid.
1. Backup your system.
2. Remove one of the drives.
3. Try to boot with one disk, it must work if your raid is ok.
4. Put the removed drive into another computer, and completely erase the disk.
5. Put back the erased drive and try to boot.
In normal case Win server will resync your system to the empty disk.

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