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Replace Balanced System Drive? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello all,

    I have searched pretty good in this forum and not found the exact scenario so I thought I might ask for help.

    I have been running WHS since the trial came out and have overall been pleased with it....and saved by the backups!

    My issue is my original two drives are balanced  (2 X 500 GB 32 MB cache SATA II Drives. I also have two same spec 1TB drives in there as well...all of them are "balanced".) of these inital two drives, one of them has a bad SATA Connector at the hard drive from being tweaked by the side chassis cover, or a mechanically curious Bengal cat I have.... This is a re-appropriated old Greatway chassis that I put an econimocal Core 2 Duo E4600 setup in and it has served me well. It is running right now.....

    Occasionally I come to find it has shut down and cannot find the boot sector because the SATA Connector has become loose. I want to replace this drive and regain peace of mind.

    My conerns are;

    I cannot locate the exact part number to match the original drive...does this matter?
    Can I just get the same spec drive and put it in there or do I have to do something prior to physical removal and replacement?
    Do I even have to replace this drive now or can I use WHS to relegate all SYS files and Data to the three good drives? Will this affect the "balancing"?


    Any help is greatly appreciated


    blick@gha-associates.com

    Wednesday, January 21, 2009 2:58 PM

Answers

  • Are you sure it's the drive (it's your system drive, right?) and not the cable? I would replace the cheap part first. :)

    Assuming it is the drive, I would turn on duplication for all shares (add a drive to the storage pool if you have to), then replace the drive and perform a server reinstallation. By doing this you are effectively simulating the failure of the system drive. Server reinstallation will preserve the data in your shares, but you will have to recreate users (who will be rejoined with their personal shares) rejoin PCs to the server, reinstall add-ins, re-do any OS customizations/installed software, etc.

    Since you're replacing a drive and the backup database doesn't participate in duplication, it's possible that you will lose your backups as a result.

    One final note: if, at the point where WHS setup asks what kind of installation you want to perform, you don't see "server reinstallation" in the list of options, don't proceed. Get back to us for further assistance/advice.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Wednesday, January 21, 2009 7:00 PM
    Moderator
  • Hi,

    There is no requirement for anything like 'balanced' pairs of drivers in WHS, it doesn't work like a Raid setup. As long as they are working and have enough space for what you want, any drive you can get is just fine.
    Initially there was a suggestion that your system drive should be 300 to 500GB because of it's use as a landing stage for any data; however as recent updates have changed the way this works, this size drive is no longer a pre-requisite.
    Apart from this system drive, it is suggested that any data drives should then be added in similar sized pairs, but this is only because of the duplication option where one copy of a duplicated file is held on each of two separate drives.
    It might be worthwhile having a read through the technical documentation available here or here.

    Colin


    If anyone answers your query successfully, please mark it as 'Helpful', to guide other users.
    Wednesday, January 21, 2009 9:24 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Are you sure it's the drive (it's your system drive, right?) and not the cable? I would replace the cheap part first. :)

    Assuming it is the drive, I would turn on duplication for all shares (add a drive to the storage pool if you have to), then replace the drive and perform a server reinstallation. By doing this you are effectively simulating the failure of the system drive. Server reinstallation will preserve the data in your shares, but you will have to recreate users (who will be rejoined with their personal shares) rejoin PCs to the server, reinstall add-ins, re-do any OS customizations/installed software, etc.

    Since you're replacing a drive and the backup database doesn't participate in duplication, it's possible that you will lose your backups as a result.

    One final note: if, at the point where WHS setup asks what kind of installation you want to perform, you don't see "server reinstallation" in the list of options, don't proceed. Get back to us for further assistance/advice.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Wednesday, January 21, 2009 7:00 PM
    Moderator
  • Thank you for your reply,

    It is definitely the drive....the tab for the SATA Connector on the drive itself is broken and I have had to stand the pins on the drive up to reattach the SATA  cable at the drive end.

    So was my question about the drive size irreleavant? Does it matter what size and that all four drive 3TB total are balanced? Was this a dumb way to setup to start with...lol?

    The intial build was with two  500 GB Drives, one of which has the broken SATA Connector ...and they were balanced right from the beginning..was this not best practice?



    Wednesday, January 21, 2009 7:14 PM
  • Hi,

    There is no requirement for anything like 'balanced' pairs of drivers in WHS, it doesn't work like a Raid setup. As long as they are working and have enough space for what you want, any drive you can get is just fine.
    Initially there was a suggestion that your system drive should be 300 to 500GB because of it's use as a landing stage for any data; however as recent updates have changed the way this works, this size drive is no longer a pre-requisite.
    Apart from this system drive, it is suggested that any data drives should then be added in similar sized pairs, but this is only because of the duplication option where one copy of a duplicated file is held on each of two separate drives.
    It might be worthwhile having a read through the technical documentation available here or here.

    Colin


    If anyone answers your query successfully, please mark it as 'Helpful', to guide other users.
    Wednesday, January 21, 2009 9:24 PM
    Moderator