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Direct Copy to WHS primary hard disk from another OS. RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hey guys,

    Ok here is my situation:

    I had a Win 08 server with a software raid 1 (two 1.5tb drives)

    I decided to move to WHS for its fantastic drive extender feature.

    I unplugged one of the 2 raided drives with the thinking that I could install WHS on the other and then plug the second back in to copy the data over.

    This didnt work because the second disk was dynamic and WHS couldnt read it.

    So right now I have my whs sitting on one drive with no duplication enables or any other drives added.

    What I want to know is if I boot into the Win 08 os and copy the data directly into the shares folder on the data WHS disk. Will that break drive extender?

    My thinking is that WHS will just see data in its shares folder when it boots back up and go about its business normally. Unless its doing something special?

    Please answer nice and technical if you can ;)
    Monday, April 13, 2009 3:13 PM

Answers

  • You will probably not be able to tell the difference; Windows Home Server Drive Extender has been changed in a number of ways to hide the actual process from the end user. This was probably done just because it was confusing for some users to see a file that they knew was several GB in size (say a .iso of a DVD) was reported as having a size of 4 kb on disk.

    Also, note that Windows Home Server will not move files from one disk to another just because you have added a disk. Files on your system disk will stay there; there is no supported way to get them to move elsewhere. And there should be no need to; if you have duplication turned on for all shares, the files are on two drives, and if you don't, you're implicitly accepting the chance of data loss anyway.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    • Marked as answer by Ben42351253 Monday, April 13, 2009 6:13 PM
    Monday, April 13, 2009 4:50 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Options that come to mind: 
    • Boot Windows Server 2008 and copy the files off onto an external hdd ...
    • or onto another computer via a share on that computer or the Windows Server 2008 installation ...
    • or connect the drive to another computer and copy the files to your server.
    There are doubtless many other options.

    Also, you should check in the Disk Management MMC snap-in on your server. It's possible that you just don't have a drive letter allocated, but the disk is recognized.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Monday, April 13, 2009 3:28 PM
    Moderator
  • Ken,

    This still does'nt answer my question. All of your solutions require extra storage or computers which Is simply not practical. I am talking well over a Terrabyte of actual data. The only way I can see that getting transfered in under 24 hours is direct drive to drive. If anyone knows if copying directly into the data folder in WHS from another windows os will break it. Personally I think whs will just process it when it boots backup.

    I am talking about copy data from Hard disk (A) which is win 08 to Hard Disk (B) which is WHS direct into the data/shares folders. (WHS is not running during the copy)
    Monday, April 13, 2009 3:32 PM
  • I understood what you were asking; what you proposed is unsupported, so I gave you several options that would be supported. Using another computer and mounting (as just another drive, not as a boot device) the drive with the data you want to copy is probably the best (least complex) of those options; presumably if you're using Windows Home Server as a file server/backup device, you have other computers. You're probably right about the time it will take, however. In theory it could take as little as 7 hours or so assuming gigabit ethernet and average performance, but in reality it will take several times that long.

    You can try what you propose, but as I said it's unsupported, and I know that at one time Windows Home Server would leave the actual files in the shares, not process them when it boots. It's possible that it will still do this, because it's designed expecting that no access to any part of the storage pool will occur except through Drive Extender.

    As for the practicality of using additonal storage, 1 TB drives cost as little as $90 plus S&H at NewEgg. To be honest, that seems pretty practical to me because at the end of the day you come out ahead; you have another drive to use for something. :)

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Monday, April 13, 2009 4:00 PM
    Moderator
  • So if when I have copied all my data across using my method and then I add the additional disks to WHS. If my files I put in the data/shares folders start showing up as 4kb tombstones will that mean my method has worked?

    I appreciate your help with this ;)
    Monday, April 13, 2009 4:06 PM
  • You will probably not be able to tell the difference; Windows Home Server Drive Extender has been changed in a number of ways to hide the actual process from the end user. This was probably done just because it was confusing for some users to see a file that they knew was several GB in size (say a .iso of a DVD) was reported as having a size of 4 kb on disk.

    Also, note that Windows Home Server will not move files from one disk to another just because you have added a disk. Files on your system disk will stay there; there is no supported way to get them to move elsewhere. And there should be no need to; if you have duplication turned on for all shares, the files are on two drives, and if you don't, you're implicitly accepting the chance of data loss anyway.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    • Marked as answer by Ben42351253 Monday, April 13, 2009 6:13 PM
    Monday, April 13, 2009 4:50 PM
    Moderator