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Building WHS - Need Help! RRS feed

  • Question

  • I am about to embark on a journey to set up a computer using WHS. My trouble is I have read so much out there about not using a RAID setup or to use a RAID setup that I don't know which way to go. One of the better solutions I read was that someone said to the OS itself on a RAID 1 and then plug in all the drives later so that if the one of the drives running the system/OS goes, i can replace and move on.

    But then I read that if you lose the system drive you can just pop in a new drive and reinstall and be well on your way to not losing your data.

    Here's how I planned to set it up initially, please tell me the drawbacks and any pros as well. I have 4 drives, 2 160GB SATA drives and 2 1TB SATA drives. I was going to install WHS with all four drives attached from the beginning. Should I do it differently. If not, does it matter which is the system drive, how would I know which of the four drives is the system drive.

    Thank you for any help.
    Ok, ok... So not everyone can be as cool as me, but it's like I tell my kids... NEVER GIVE UP!
    Tuesday, April 14, 2009 4:30 PM

Answers

  • I attempted to go RAID too, and was corrected by the fine moderators in here.

    what i learned:

    RAID is not supported by WHS becuase it has its on layer for monitoring HDD health, and if a drive failed, WHS would have no way of dealing with the issue.

    the partition limit with WHS is 2TB, therefore if your array is larger it will not allow the partition above 2TB to be seen and accessed.  Example:

    I had a RAID 5 array setup that was 5 1.5TB drives.  the total usable space was 5.86TB.

    when WHS saw the drive space (which it saw 5.86TB in total) I added in the space, and it only took 2TB of that space. 

    Under Disk Management, I saw that 2TB of the array was taken and 3.86TB was left over 'unallocated'

    there was NO WAY to access this unallocated space.  right clicking on it only showed its 'properties', and under the WHS Storage Console page, that extra 3.86TB was just gone.

    I ended up breaking apart my array and adding in each drive separately.  Granted I gained a bunch of space due to not 'losing' the 20% per disk to parity information, but I feel in a way I did lose the 'fault tolerance' I was hoping for.

    Hopefully WHS and its HDD monitoring is sufficient, so that in the case of a drive starting to fail, I am able to offload the data and replace the drive with no losses.

    hope this helps.

    -Andrew
    Tuesday, April 14, 2009 5:39 PM

All replies

  • I attempted to go RAID too, and was corrected by the fine moderators in here.

    what i learned:

    RAID is not supported by WHS becuase it has its on layer for monitoring HDD health, and if a drive failed, WHS would have no way of dealing with the issue.

    the partition limit with WHS is 2TB, therefore if your array is larger it will not allow the partition above 2TB to be seen and accessed.  Example:

    I had a RAID 5 array setup that was 5 1.5TB drives.  the total usable space was 5.86TB.

    when WHS saw the drive space (which it saw 5.86TB in total) I added in the space, and it only took 2TB of that space. 

    Under Disk Management, I saw that 2TB of the array was taken and 3.86TB was left over 'unallocated'

    there was NO WAY to access this unallocated space.  right clicking on it only showed its 'properties', and under the WHS Storage Console page, that extra 3.86TB was just gone.

    I ended up breaking apart my array and adding in each drive separately.  Granted I gained a bunch of space due to not 'losing' the 20% per disk to parity information, but I feel in a way I did lose the 'fault tolerance' I was hoping for.

    Hopefully WHS and its HDD monitoring is sufficient, so that in the case of a drive starting to fail, I am able to offload the data and replace the drive with no losses.

    hope this helps.

    -Andrew
    Tuesday, April 14, 2009 5:39 PM
  • Thanks for your input. I am going to get to getting on my set up then.

    Take care,
    Ok, ok... So not everyone can be as cool as me, but it's like I tell my kids... NEVER GIVE UP!
    Tuesday, April 14, 2009 9:34 PM
  • I attempted to go RAID too, and was corrected by the fine moderators in here.

    what i learned:

    RAID is not supported by WHS becuase it has its on layer for monitoring HDD health, and if a drive failed, WHS would have no way of dealing with the issue.

    the partition limit with WHS is 2TB, therefore if your array is larger it will not allow the partition above 2TB to be seen and accessed.  Example:

    I had a RAID 5 array setup that was 5 1.5TB drives.  the total usable space was 5.86TB.

    when WHS saw the drive space (which it saw 5.86TB in total) I added in the space, and it only took 2TB of that space. 

    Under Disk Management, I saw that 2TB of the array was taken and 3.86TB was left over 'unallocated'

    there was NO WAY to access this unallocated space.  right clicking on it only showed its 'properties', and under the WHS Storage Console page, that extra 3.86TB was just gone.

    I ended up breaking apart my array and adding in each drive separately.  Granted I gained a bunch of space due to not 'losing' the 20% per disk to parity information, but I feel in a way I did lose the 'fault tolerance' I was hoping for.

    Hopefully WHS and its HDD monitoring is sufficient, so that in the case of a drive starting to fail, I am able to offload the data and replace the drive with no losses.

    hope this helps.

    -Andrew
    Folder Duplication most closely resembles RAID 1 (mirroring).  Even if a single hard drive completely failed without any notification at all, as long as you have Folder Duplication enabled on all of your shares, you won't lose any data stored in the network shares.
    Wednesday, April 15, 2009 12:58 AM
    Moderator
  • Until WHS offers a version that can replace the system drive in 10 minutes when it fails (as opposed to the official line of taking 6 - 8 hours to rebuild it), then, I would suggest setting up your two 160 GB drives in a RAID 1 on a dedicated quality RAID hardware card such as 3ware.  Add your two 1 TB drive later and connect directly to your motherboard connections.  These drives will be your storage pool and not part of the RAID which only handles the system drives "C" and "D".  They can be set-up for file duplication.

    Allthough WHS does not know what's happening with the RAID drives, a good RAID hardware card has many options to inform you if there's a problem.
    Wednesday, April 15, 2009 1:34 AM