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WHS Full Server Backup and Recovery when Changing All Hard Drives RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi there. I am obtaining a repeated yellow alert "SYS Volume is Failing" error, and I already ran chkdsk /f once. So I am using this as a sign to replace my hard drives. I wish to replace all three ATA-100 drives to the largest capacity available (500GB each). I believe I have a couple of options to accomplish a full server backup and restore, and I humbly request your suggestion on which option to pursue:

    Options:

    1. Do a full backup to an external Windows XP share folder using WHS Backup utility via WHS Console, including system state. Replace the hard drives. Install WHS and all OS patches. Then perform a full restore using the same utiility via WHS Console.

    2. Dismount/remove one drive at a time, install new drive, and let the WHS pseudo-RAID setup repopulate the drive. Since my hard drives are not hot pluggable, I will have to shutdown the server every time I want to remove the drive.

    3. Create another server (I have two identical servers down to the BIOS version, one as a hardware spare). Put the new drives in this server. Clone the server using a third-party utility (what, I have not determined) or perform a manual WHS backup and restore. Once completed, move the hard drives from the spare server to the primary server and shutdown the spare server (which is planned to be used for a future non-priority project).

    Note that I do external data backups on 2 separate USB hard drives on a scheduled basis, and one is stored off-site. These backups are performed manually.

    Any suggestions? Thanks.



    Monday, May 9, 2011 4:22 PM

Answers

  • I have used the product "SpinRite" from www.grc.com on a number of marginal disks with good results.  Does very low-level maintenance....
    • Marked as answer by treet007 Wednesday, July 6, 2011 2:11 AM
    Saturday, June 4, 2011 2:08 PM

All replies

  • You might do a chkdsk /r to scan for bad sectors and see if that
    straightens things out.  It will take a long time to run...
     
     

    Bob Comer - Microsoft MVP Virtual Machine
    Monday, May 9, 2011 4:33 PM
  • Thanks Bob. I'll give /r option a try tonight. Will report back with the results.
    Monday, May 9, 2011 6:59 PM
  • Hi Bob. Ran chkdsk /r, and the DATA partition reported no errors. I have no idea about the problematic SYS: partition. chkdsk /r ran after server reboot, but it did not record anything in Event Viewer and I ran the command overnight, so I was not watching the screen. Is there a log anywhere with the results of chkdsk /r for SYS:?

    Thanks.

    Thursday, May 12, 2011 4:56 PM
  • The results really should be in the event viewer, but a copy of the
    log may be in c:\windows\system32\chkdsk.log
     
     

    Bob Comer - Microsoft MVP Virtual Machine
    Thursday, May 12, 2011 7:07 PM
  • Hi Bob. I did another repair in WHS Console, and it shows no bad sectors. I also cannot locate the chkdsk.log file. So far, it is green. If it faults again, I will do the replacement.
    Friday, June 3, 2011 3:00 AM
  • I have used the product "SpinRite" from www.grc.com on a number of marginal disks with good results.  Does very low-level maintenance....
    • Marked as answer by treet007 Wednesday, July 6, 2011 2:11 AM
    Saturday, June 4, 2011 2:08 PM
  • Thanks jerryyyy. I purchased SpinRite and found that the drive was getting seek errors, not bad sectors. Looks like the hard drive mechanism is aging. I did level 2 and found the problem.

    I found out later that the power supply on this server is also making noise, so it is time to move to a different chassis.

    I now use SpinRite to check hard drives to see if they work correctly before committing to the server.

    Thanks again.

    Wednesday, July 6, 2011 2:11 AM