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Shadow copy? RRS feed

  • Question

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    What is the name of the process that copies files to the other HD in WHS? I know they dont call it Shadow Copy. ALso is there a way to turn it off? Thanks

    Tuesday, June 3, 2008 3:02 PM

All replies

  • It's genreally called demigrator or DE service. If you look in services (start, run, services.msc) it's named "drive extender migrator service" This is also the best place to shut down the service. You can also shut it down from the command line (net stop ....) or using a script or batch file. Having said that, I would advise you not to turn the service off unless you know what you're doing. If you turn it off all files will remain in the so called "landing zone" which is the D partition of your pimary drive. For more info please read Drive Extender

    Tuesday, June 3, 2008 3:16 PM
    Moderator
  •  

     

    I understand this but don't see why I wouldnt want it off. It's constantly balancing especially when moving large files. Id rahter have w2k3 but its not in the budget. Why can't I safely disable this? It just seems odd to me.
    Tuesday, June 3, 2008 3:24 PM
  • Drive Extender performs essential system functions. You shoudn't turn it off for several reasons, including those stated by brubber. If it's not running:
    • Files won't be duplicated.
    • Files copied to the server will continue to occupy space on the system drive. This has the (non-obvious) effect that your backup database will come to occupy a great deal of space on your system drive, because the files that make it up are in the storage pool.
    • Various system health checks won't be performed. (These are what account for most of the time that the server is "balancing".)
    Tuesday, June 3, 2008 4:51 PM
    Moderator
  • Can I move them manually from the storage pool? I don't want them duplicated. Can that portion be turned off? So balancing also does health checks? This sure is alot of stress on a home machine...

    Tuesday, June 3, 2008 6:05 PM
  •  jshoemaker21 wrote:
    Can I move them manually from the storage pool?

     

    Not if you want it to continue to work.

     

     jshoemaker21 wrote:
    I don't want them duplicated. Can that portion be turned off?

     

    Yes, Folder Duplication is set for each share individually (and can be turned off through the WHS console).

     

     jshoemaker21 wrote:
    So balancing also does health checks?

     

    Yep.

     

     jshoemaker21 wrote:
    This sure is alot of stress on a home machine...

     

    Not really.

    Tuesday, June 3, 2008 7:12 PM
    Moderator
  • How is it done manually since only one drive shows up? They are pooled. Thanks

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 1:12 PM
  •  jshoemaker21 wrote:
    How is it done manually since only one drive shows up? They are pooled. Thanks

     

    To clarify:  If you start manually moving files around underneath the OS (so WHS has no knowledge of the fact that you moved the files yourself), WHS will no longer work properly.  I don't know what possible reason you would have to want to move files around like that.  You're better off to let WHS do what it's supposed to do.

     

    What exactly are you trying to accomplish?

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 2:01 PM
    Moderator
  • I want to copy what I want to copy. I dont want this thing cranking away "balancing" everytime I move a large file. I have many large files. Hard drives only last so long and the way this WHS setup is it cranks away more than the Enterprise Server at my job. I have it on Dell Poweredge. I just don't want my data being moved without my input. I want it done manually. If you can help me acheieve this goal I'd appreciate it. Thanks

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 2:11 PM
  •  jshoemaker21 wrote:

    I want to copy what I want to copy. I dont want this thing cranking away "balancing" everytime I move a large file. I have many large files. Hard drives only last so long and the way this WHS setup is it cranks away more than the Enterprise Server at my job. I have it on Dell Poweredge. I just don't want my data being moved without my input. I want it done manually. If you can help me achieve this goal I'd appreciate it. Thanks

    That's fairly simple:

     

    1. Do NOT add the data disks to the pool

    2. Create new shares on the disks not added to the pool

    3. Do NOT disable demigrator

    4. Do NOT copy to WHS shares

     

    In my experience manual or scheduled Start / Stop of demigrator service does not always give the expected result. Sometimes the process Restarts no error, however it does not move any files

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 3:02 PM
    Moderator
  •  jshoemaker21 wrote:
    I want to copy what I want to copy. I dont want this thing cranking away "balancing" everytime I move a large file. I have many large files. Hard drives only last so long and the way this WHS setup is it cranks away more than the Enterprise Server at my job. I have it on Dell Poweredge. I just don't want my data being moved without my input. I want it done manually. If you can help me acheieve this goal I'd appreciate it. Thanks

     

    The "movement" is done in the background to allow adding more hard drives to the server and keep it looking like a "single volume" from the network shares.  (And it doesn't constantly move files, only when you add data to the share will it move it somewhere else.)

     

    In addition to what brubber posted, the only way to keep WHS from balancing is to give WHS only one hard drive.  If you add a RAID 5 controller and hook up multiple drives to it, then present the RAID 5 controller to WHS during installation as a "single drive", that will solve it.  NOTE:  Going that route is unsupported by MS, but others have gotten it to work.  In addition, you will never be able to add hard drive space to the WHS storage pool.

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 3:12 PM
    Moderator
  •  

    I just want a server platform for home without all that balancing act, like w2k3 but without the price tag. THats what I'm looking for.

     

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 3:45 PM
  •  jshoemaker21 wrote:
    I just want a server platform for home without all that balancing act, like w2k3 but without the price tag. THats what I'm looking for.

     

    Brubber's and my previous posts are as close as you're going to get using WHS (either one big drive using hardware RAID 5 before WHS install, or multiple smaller drives and bypass WHS completely).

     

    It boils down to this: if the balancing is that big of an issue to you, you cannot let WHS know it has more than one drive in the storage pool.

     

    (FWIW, the balancing is not anywhere near as bad as you seem to think it is.  It's not moving files constantly.  The balancing message that shows up doesn't mean it's moving files every time.  Frankly, "balancing" is a terrible term that, IMO, MS needs to change.  I've had my OEM WHS up and running 24/7 for 9 months now and not a single issue, and that includes the fact that the hard drives I'm using are old hard drives I had in PCs before.)

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 4:04 PM
    Moderator
  • ANd the only way to do this is through raid?

     

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 4:06 PM
  •  jshoemaker21 wrote:

    I want to copy what I want to copy. I dont want this thing cranking away "balancing" everytime I move a large file. I have many large files. Hard drives only last so long and the way this WHS setup is it cranks away more than the Enterprise Server at my job. I have it on Dell Poweredge. I just don't want my data being moved without my input. I want it done manually. If you can help me acheieve this goal I'd appreciate it. Thanks

    There is no supported way to configure Windows Home Server so you control what Drive Extender is doing.

     

    Based on this thread, I think you're in the percentage of potential customers that would be better served by something other than Windows Home Server. It sounds like you want the features, but don't want the overhead that the features impose, and you can't get one without the other.

     

    What, exactly, do you want to use a home server for? Have you considered Windows Server 2003 or 2008?

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 4:14 PM
    Moderator
  •  jshoemaker21 wrote:
    ANd the only way to do this is through raid?

     

    If you want the full functionality of WHS (Remote Access, client PC backups, etc), yes.  NOTE:  It must be hardware RAID 5.  Software RAID 5 won't work.  And by the time you factor in the cost of a half-way decent RAID 5 controller card, it might end up being cheaper to get WS2K3/2K8 instead.

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 4:22 PM
    Moderator
  • Yeah. I'd like w2k3 but something cheaper.

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 4:30 PM
  •  jshoemaker21 wrote:

    Yeah. I'd like w2k3 but something cheaper.

     

    If you do everything yourself (meaning typical server admin stuff, i.e. adding/formatting hard drives, manually creating shares, etc.), yes you can do that as well.  But you lose the nice features of WHS (one big storage pool, client PC backups, remote access, etc.).

     

    You can't have your cake and eat it too. Smile

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 4:43 PM
    Moderator
  • How do I take that approach and disable the automatic stuff?

     

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 4:50 PM
  •  jshoemaker21 wrote:
    How do I take that approach and disable the automatic stuff?

     

    You don't need to disable it.  Just ignore it.  Don't use the WHS console at all.  DE won't kick in unless you add a second drive to the WHS storage pool.  If you never use the console, there will never be another drive in the WHS storage pool.  Just make sure you understand: you will be doing everything yourself (and you will lose out on the WHS features).

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 4:57 PM
    Moderator
  • THat helps a lot! How do I take it out of the pool? And will it have any adverse effects such as wasted space or anything else. THanks

     

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 6:02 PM
  •  jshoemaker21 wrote:
    THat helps a lot! How do I take it out of the pool?

     

    Have you already added extra drives to WHS?  If so, you remove the drives through the console.  Once you get down to a single drive for WHS, simply never add another one to the storage pool.

     

     jshoemaker21 wrote:
    And will it have any adverse effects such as wasted space or anything else. THanks

     

    For starters, you will lose all of the WHS features (as I already said).  Backing up client PCs, Remote Access, Media Streaming, WHS add-ins, Storage Pool, etc. all unavailable to you.

     

    As for wasted space, I don't see how you would waste space (as long as you utilize the D partition by creating your own shares and creating your own permissions for them).  However, you will probably need to leave the default WHS shares there.  (Who knows what would happen if you got rid of them.)  Also, since you should leave those shares there (and cannot have the same share name on the server more than once), you won't be able to create shares with the default WHS share names (Music, Photos, Public, Software, Users, and Videos).

     

    On the bright side, you will probably get a couple benefits out of it.  First, no wasted space on each hard drive (WHS keeps 20 GB free per drive for file expansion).  Second, Previous Versions should work properly once you configure them yourself (currently, Previous Versions on WHS has a couple bugs and is not 100% reliable).

     

    Last but not least, note that all of this is in theory.  (I don't know of anyone who has actually done this.)  So all of the standard "proceed at your own risk", "your mileage may vary" and other warnings/notices apply.  (Also, I agree with Ken.  You should seriously consider investing in WS2K3 instead of going this route.)

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 7:35 PM
    Moderator
  • Scary reply!! But I wont lose the remote bacup, desktop, just by removing a drive from a pool? That doesnt seem right.... It seems I'd just lose the DE capability correct?

     

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 7:51 PM
  •  jshoemaker21 wrote:
    Scary reply!! But I wont lose the remote bacup, desktop, just by removing a drive from a pool? That doesnt seem right.... It seems I'd just lose the DE capability correct?

     

    Sorry, I assumed you didn't want to use WHS functionality at all.

     

    If, by remote backup, you mean the ability to backup client PCs, it will still work if you install the connector software on the client PCs.  The problem you will have is expansion.  If, at some point, your backups start taking up a lot of room on WHS, you will not be able to add a second hard drive to the storage pool (since you want to avoid DE).

     

    I guess I should change my original comment to state you can use any part of WHS that does not require a secondary drive to be used (Folder Duplication, storage pool).  Just remember: WHS is not aware of any data on any drive outside of the primary drive if you don't add the other drives to the pool.

     

    Wednesday, June 4, 2008 8:05 PM
    Moderator
  • Kariya21, could you drop me an email? Mine is in my p[rofile; just remove the antispam device...
    Thursday, June 5, 2008 3:45 AM
    Moderator