Using RAID1 as a system backup method

By Neon Samurai ·
Can RAID1 be used as a viable method of full system backup?

I've been doing a bit of reading and while others have asked this question elsewhere, I'm not yet convinced. Here's the idea.

Server has hot swappable DriveA and DriveB under hardware RAID1. During initial system building, we test this setup by pulling randomly pulling a drive to confirm that the system continues as if nothing is wrong and re-syncs the drives when the pulled drive is replaced. This provides the basis for my theory.

(Hardware raid is fantastic. It does it's thing without the notice or interaction of the OS ruining on top.)

It's come time to plan the OS upgrade. While there is no reason to expect it to go poorly, not having a system backup that can easily be restored is just poor planning. Here is what I'm thinking:

a. remove DriveB from RAID1 hot-swap

b. follow standard OS upgrade procedure on DriveA

c+. if upgrade goes well; replace DriveB allowing hardware to resync DriveB from the now good DriveA image

c-. if upgrade goes poorly; pull DriveA and replace DriveB returning system to previously known good state. Replace DriveA allowing hardware to resync DriveA from the known good previous image on DriveB

d. fire up the BBQ and celebrate (or commiserate before trying planB)

Does anyone see an issue with this strategy? Is anyone out there using a similar "pull one of the drives" backup strategy using RAID1?

(software, hardware and security because the first two are involved and the last one is includes system continuity)

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All Answers

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Sounds good

by markp24 In reply to Using RAID1 as a system b ...


I would still recommend a full backup, and if the install fails for some reason, i would wipe that uopdated disk just in case so it goes back in as blank. (just in case,

otherwise in theory its fine.

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Reponse To Answer

by Neon Samurai In reply to Sounds good

Cheer for the second opinion. I've also been pondering a full backup strategy to suppliment the plan. Luckily, a hundred gig is not such a huge amount to back up these days though I don't forsee it being a DVD backup.

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let us know how it works out

by markp24 In reply to Using RAID1 as a system b ...

im curious myself how it works out for you

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