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Removing drive after time bomb prior to reinstalling RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • I've been playing with a 120 day whs trial for a while and suddenly realised that the time bomb was activated. (I didn't know about the console incorrectly reporting the end date)

    However, I need to remove 2 PATA drives prior to reinstalling the server as the PATA controller is listed before the SATA where my SYS is installed. Is there any way to do this knowing that the data will be moved properly to the other drives and the server is not being restarted while removing the drive? (only 2 small drives, 400 GB each)

    • Changed type Bjurran Tuesday, July 27, 2010 1:22 PM
    Monday, July 26, 2010 1:22 PM

All replies

  • Once the time bomb in the evaluation version has been activated, you progressively lose access to your server as you've doubtless already noticed. There is, unfortunately, no real way to defeat this, and I wouldn't try a drive removal.

    Assuming you're planning to reinstall with a full OEM version of the software, you could simply start with a single drive in the server (a large new drive, presumably, and probably one connected to your primary PATA channel for simplicity) then follow the instructions in this FAQ to copy the data off your old drives.

    If you're planning to reinstall the evaulation software you've got now, I'll warn you that what you're currently experiencing is one reason Mcirosoft doesn't support the use of eval software in a production situation. I'll also point out that you'll be unable to obtain another product key for it, so your eval will be limited by Windows Activation, a 30 day deadline.


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Monday, July 26, 2010 3:46 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks Ken. What I was planning to do is to use another 120 day eval as I have some left. (some people gave me the CDs back as they decided to wait until the Vail version is official)

    As I've never used the drive removal before, is it possible to remove a 400 GB drive within the 2 h frame? I have enough free space on my SATA drives to do so one drive at the time.

    Monday, July 26, 2010 4:28 PM
  • As I have duplication on all my folders, I assume I could disconnect one drive and wait to let the file system make sure that the files are duplicated instead of using the drive removal. As I understand it, this should force whs to duplicate the files to the drives still in the system, right? If this is done automatically I assume that it doesn't matter if the server is restarted, the duplication should continue when the server is rebooted again, right? If that is the case, is there an easy way to tell when the duplication is completed? If so, that would also tell me when it would be safe to remove the last drive.

    I'm aware that I might loose my backups, but that's ok. The only thing I would like to do is to be able to run the reinstall instead of a fresh install.

    Monday, July 26, 2010 4:58 PM
  • You MUST use drive removal for duplication to happen to other disks. Duplication from a disk failure is not an automated process - as a "failed disk" may have been a temporary disconnect.

    I'd expect that it may take several attempts, as it will certainly not finish in the 2h reboot cycles.
    You should try a "server reinstallation" with the OEM installer, as it should allow you to keep your storage pool intact.

    Monday, July 26, 2010 11:42 PM
  • Thanks guys. I'll just robocopy all the files back manually after a fresh install instead. Will take less time as well.

    Tuesday, July 27, 2010 5:19 AM
  • Anyway, someone should have a look to make sure that Vail is programmed differently. It doesn't matter if it's a drive removal, chkdsk or whatever, a reboot should be forbidden if critical maintenance tasks are running. If the OS is allowed to reboot it self like this with the time bomb, will the same thing happen if windows update requires a reboot?
    Tuesday, July 27, 2010 5:21 AM
  • The point of putting a time bomb like this into an evaluation version of a product is to make it impossible to use once the evaluation period has elapsed. It keeps people from installing the evaluation version, then using it in production with only minor inconvenience.

    And, as an evaluation version, using it in a production scenario isn't supported. You're supposed to use it to evaluate whether the product meets your needs (which shouldn't take more than a few weeks with something like Windows Home Server) then buy the full version.


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Tuesday, July 27, 2010 10:01 AM
    Moderator
  • This sounds like defending a bad choice since there are a zillion softwareprograms out there that have evaluation versions that can simply be unlocked after buying a product key. It should have been possible to just enter such a product key and convert it from evaulation to full product. Ah well...the best way to evaluate is to not install the evaluation version, but to get a retail/oem version, which can be used 90 days maximum (30-days and then rearm twice to get 2x30 days more).
    I honestly hope MS will reconsider this for V2 since this issue pops up regularly and there seems to be a need to be able to convert eval to a full product WHS.

    And, as an evaluation version, using it in a production scenario isn't supported.

    The OEM version don't have support either. But the eval version is the same package as the full WHS (except the eval period).


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    "Ken Warren [MVP]" wrote in message news:7b5cccbd-9def-4e03-b205-1f65d8e8710c@communitybridge.codeplex.com...

    The point of putting a time bomb like this into an evaluation version of a product is to make it impossible to use once the evaluation period has elapsed. It keeps people from installing the evaluation version, then using it in production with only minor inconvenience.

    And, as an evaluation version, using it in a production scenario isn't supported. You're supposed to use it to*evaluate* whether the product meets your needs (which shouldn't take more than a few weeks with something like Windows Home Server) then buy the full version.


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)


    Have a nice day!
    Tuesday, July 27, 2010 11:26 AM
  • I agree with Leen here.

    I've been building systems for many years and I know that everyone would like to have their systems set up in many different ways.
    In this case, I believe that the user should be able to install the software, try to set it up the way they want to, and if it meets the needs, just activate it. Having to reinstall it all and set it all up again just because it does indeed work the way the customer would like it to seems totally wrong. If there was at least a way to transfer all settings and installed software to a network share or similar before wiping the server I wouldn’t complain as all customisation would be stored but the time bomb removed when installing the oem. (Similar to the way a user can transfer all settings when upgrading to a new windows version and/or computer)

     

    Tuesday, July 27, 2010 1:22 PM
  • This sounds like defending a bad choice since there are a zillion softwareprograms out there that have evaluation versions that can simply be unlocked after buying a product key. It should have been possible to just enter such a product key and convert it from evaulation to full product. Ah well...the best way to evaluate is to not install the evaluation version, but to get a retail/oem version, which can be used 90 days maximum (30-days and then rearm twice to get 2x30 days more).  
    There is no such thing as rearm in WHS v1 (in which the underlying OS is Server 2003).  Rearm wasn't introduced until Vista/Server 2008.

    I honestly hope MS will reconsider this for V2 since this issue pops up regularly and there seems to be a need to be able to convert eval to a full product WHS.


    Have a nice day!

    Thursday, July 29, 2010 4:10 AM
    Moderator
  • Your right.

    And yes Vail does re-arm (V1 not).

    Thanks for correcting.


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    "kariya21 [MVP]" wrote in message news:d0f0a8ea-541c-4b9d-bbd5-19c4cc27b348@communitybridge.codeplex.com...

    This sounds like defending a bad choice since there are a zillion softwareprograms out there that have evaluation versions that can simply be unlocked after buying a product key. It should have been possible to just enter such a product key and convert it from evaulation to full product. Ah well...the best way to evaluate is to not install the evaluation version, but to get a retail/oem version, which can be used 90 days maximum (30-days and then rearm twice to get 2x30 days more).

    There is no such thing as rearm in WHS v1 (in which the underlying OS is Server 2003). Rearm wasn't introduced until Vista/Server 2008.

    I honestly hope MS will reconsider this for V2 since this issue pops up regularly and there seems to be a need to be able to convert eval to a full product WHS.





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    Have a nice day!


    Have a nice day!
    Thursday, July 29, 2010 6:03 AM
  • ...
    I've been building systems for many years and I know that everyone would like to have their systems set up in many different ways.
    ...

    This has a lot to do with why you shouldn't convert your eval operating system to a full version, even if you could do so by entering a different product key.

    Operating systems tend to take a lot with them when they fail. Windows Home Server is no different in this regard, and more so than most. Anything you did the fitst time to set your server up the way you want it, you will have to repeat if your server fails in a way that takes the OS with it. The more highly customized your server, the more you'll have to do. In addition, the server recovery process isn't as smooth as one would wish, particularly if you add multiple drives to your server over time. The reinstallation to convert from eval to licensed OS may be the only chance you will ever take to practice this. And you should practice it; it doesn't matter the first time you install if you fumble the "Press F6" prompt, but it will if you have a lot of data at risk.

    Another consideration: most people evaluating Windows Home Server don't have any product key at all. Their evaluation is limited not by the time bomb, but by activation (30 days). That the original poster has a longer evaluation period is really an aberration at this point.

    However, the primary reason for the time bomb is, I'm sure, revenue protection on Microsoft's part, given that Windows is on the vast majority of desktops and Windows Home Server is a consumer product and thus more likely to be pirated. (Almost nobody pirates OS X, for example, because it's just not that popular an OS.) This will not change in Vail, I'm sure. If eval product keys are issued, the period they'll allow for evaluation may be different (Windows Server 2008 R2 eval is a 180 day period, I believe), but I'm pretty sure there will still be a time bomb.


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Thursday, July 29, 2010 12:30 PM
    Moderator