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Migrating backups and folder to new WHS system RRS feed

  • Question

  • I'm seeking guidance on migrating data and hard drives from my "old" WHS system to my new WHS system, and hoping to inspire an add-in developer to develop a migration add-in.

    Similar to "Questions on migrating to a new server", I have a new WHS system and want to migrate all my data (backups and folders) from my el-cheapo "old" WHS system to my new WHS system, and then (different from the referenced thread) decommission the old WHS system. I requested an automated migration feature on Connect back in Nov'07, as this migration has been my plan all along, but so far, no joy.

    Olaf provided some excellent guidance in the referenced thread (MVPs rock!), but I'm wondering if anyone has seen or published a cookbook on performing a migration like this?

    IMO this is a great opportunity for an add-in, and for the right functionality I would definitely pay for it.

    My goal: add the new WHS system to the network, install the migration add-in on the old and/or new WHS system (implementer's choice), identify which system was "old" and which was "new", preview the steps that would be taken (inadvertently swapping "old" and "new" may be a baroque way to destroy all the data on the "old" WHS system), and then let the add-in perform the migration. If there are any manual steps required, e.g., uninstall/reinstall the Connector software on all the clients, step me through it or give me a checklist to print.

    One wrinkle that may impact my migration is very different hard drive configurations. Old WHS system has:

    (System) 320Gb internal (SATA)
    200Gb internal (IDE)
    250Gb internal (IDE)
    250Gb USB
    160Gb USB
    320Gb USB
    (1.26Tb total, 336Gb free space)

    The new WHS system has:
    (System) 750Gb internal
    320Gb internal

    When everything's said and done, I'd like to move the SATA and USB drives from the old WHS to the new WHS system during the migration, but I suspect there isn't quite enough space on the new WHS to just migrate in one shot, decommission all the drives on the old WHS system, and move them all to the new WHS system. I may have to migrate some data to the new WHS system, decommission a USB drive on the old WHS system, plug it into the new WHS system and add it to the storage pool, and repeat.

    Thus a key feature of an add-in would therefore be for it to make those calculations and guide me through the process of migrating data, decommissioning a drive on the old WHS system, adding it to the new WHS system's storage pool, etc.

    Any guidance welcome, and willing to share my thoughts with interested add-in developers.

    Thanks!
    --Peter
    Sunday, March 1, 2009 11:08 PM

Answers

  •  Since server reinstall will preserve all data in shares (and even client backups when not (partially) stored on the old system disk) the obvious path would be to

    1. Move all of "old" WHS data disks to the new system (probably you can even include the old WHS system disk, never tried this though)
    2. Also include the new system disk, make sure this is the primary (boot) disk!
    3. Boot from WHS install DVD, select server reinstall, install (please note this may take a considerable amount of time.
    4. Connect client, create users and set rigts similar to old systems
    5. Add the new Data disk
    Tuesday, March 3, 2009 2:17 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • PeterPla said:

    I'm seeking guidance on migrating data and hard drives from my "old" WHS system to my new WHS system, and hoping to inspire an add-in developer to develop a migration add-in.

    Similar to "Questions on migrating to a new server", I have a new WHS system and want to migrate all my data (backups and folders) from my el-cheapo "old" WHS system to my new WHS system, and then (different from the referenced thread) decommission the old WHS system. I requested an automated migration feature on Connect back in Nov'07, as this migration has been my plan all along, but so far, no joy.

    Olaf provided some excellent guidance in the referenced thread (MVPs rock!), but I'm wondering if anyone has seen or published a cookbook on performing a migration like this?

    IMO this is a great opportunity for an add-in, and for the right functionality I would definitely pay for it.

    My goal: add the new WHS system to the network, install the migration add-in on the old and/or new WHS system (implementer's choice), identify which system was "old" and which was "new", preview the steps that would be taken (inadvertently swapping "old" and "new" may be a baroque way to destroy all the data on the "old" WHS system), and then let the add-in perform the migration. If there are any manual steps required, e.g., uninstall/reinstall the Connector software on all the clients, step me through it or give me a checklist to print.

    One wrinkle that may impact my migration is very different hard drive configurations. Old WHS system has:

    (System) 320Gb internal (SATA)
    200Gb internal (IDE)
    250Gb internal (IDE)
    250Gb USB
    160Gb USB
    320Gb USB
    (1.26Tb total, 336Gb free space)

    The new WHS system has:
    (System) 750Gb internal
    320Gb internal

    When everything's said and done, I'd like to move the SATA and USB drives from the old WHS to the new WHS system during the migration, but I suspect there isn't quite enough space on the new WHS to just migrate in one shot, decommission all the drives on the old WHS system, and move them all to the new WHS system. I may have to migrate some data to the new WHS system, decommission a USB drive on the old WHS system, plug it into the new WHS system and add it to the storage pool, and repeat.

    Thus a key feature of an add-in would therefore be for it to make those calculations and guide me through the process of migrating data, decommissioning a drive on the old WHS system, adding it to the new WHS system's storage pool, etc.

    Any guidance welcome, and willing to share my thoughts with interested add-in developers.

    Thanks!
    --Peter


    To be honest, I don't see a need for it.  First, I don't see MS making a tool for that.  As for 3rd party developers, all any add-in of that nature will do is copy the data from one server to the other through the network, which you can do right now (either with RoboCopy or SyncToy, or just copy and paste from the old server to the new one).  In the time you are waiting for an add-in to be planned/written/tested/debugged/etc, you could have already done the copy and paste many times over.
    Monday, March 2, 2009 5:54 AM
    Moderator
  • There is no built in migration path from one home server to another, as you've already learned. In addition, I can't say for sure, but I suspect that there will not be a tool built into future versions of Windows Home Server, given that WHS is primarily an OEM solution. As for a commercial add-in, I suspect that it would not be terribly practical; generally this sort of migration is something that you do once in a very great while.
    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Monday, March 2, 2009 7:20 PM
    Moderator
  •  Since server reinstall will preserve all data in shares (and even client backups when not (partially) stored on the old system disk) the obvious path would be to

    1. Move all of "old" WHS data disks to the new system (probably you can even include the old WHS system disk, never tried this though)
    2. Also include the new system disk, make sure this is the primary (boot) disk!
    3. Boot from WHS install DVD, select server reinstall, install (please note this may take a considerable amount of time.
    4. Connect client, create users and set rigts similar to old systems
    5. Add the new Data disk
    Tuesday, March 3, 2009 2:17 AM
    Moderator
  • Moving the drives to your new server and doing a reinstallation will definitely work for the current version. There's no way for me to be able to say if it will work with the next version of Windows Home Server, however, because there will undoubtedly be changes throughout the product.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Tuesday, March 3, 2009 6:06 PM
    Moderator
  • For anyone considering using SyncToy 2.0 as described above, note that Microsoft has acknowledged a file corruption bug in SyncToy 2.0, see http://social.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/synctoy/thread/b1855c8a-696d-4079-9b69-701dd725e451.

    It does not appear to impact transfers between Windows systems, but had I known of this problem BEFORE I followed the advice above to copy all my irreplaceable photos, etc, I would definitely have used a different tool (why take a chance?). So far I have NOT detected any problems in the files I copied between my WHS systems using SyncToy 2.0, but I've only checked a tiny fraction of the ~10Gb of data I copied. Hopefully no ugly surprises turn up in the future.
    Monday, April 27, 2009 12:38 AM