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Extend C drive with Another Physical Drive

Posted on 2004-10-15
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Last Modified: 2010-04-13
My drive C is running low on my Windows 2000 Server.
I would like to install another HD on the server and Have windows pick it up and therefore give me the option of extending the C drive to be part of the new HD. So that Microsoft Exchange can be added to this disk as well. Is this possible.


Please help as this is urgent.

Thanks in advance.
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Question by:TechInNeedmm
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Expert Comment

by:Yan_west
ID: 12319724
Install the new drive.. you would not be able to increase the size of your C drive just like this... I would install the new drive as a D drive, and move your exchange database to the new drive.

you can install exchange on a d drive if you want, no need to install it on C, and if you already have exchange installed, you can move your database to the new drive too..

If you are still missing space, you can move alot of stuff on the D, like your Spool, and your Paging file..
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by:TechInNeedmm
ID: 12320103
Hmmmm, and moving my Exchange Database to a new drive will not cause any loss of data etc?
My problem is that the Exchange DB is growing Huge as well as the log files that Exchange creates.

I cannot afford to lose any data.
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by:Chatable
ID: 12320137
What you are describing is called RAID - Using multiple hard-disks to create a single logical drive.
Windows 2000 Server allows you to create such drives. A detailed explaination on how to manage RAIDs is available at:
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/windows2000serv/maintain/optimize/c11w2kad.mspx
However, you should consider these before you begin:
1) I don't know specifically about Windows 2000's RAID mechanism, but most of them requires both disks to be the same model.
2) You will probably need to reformat your existing drive. Maybe some third-party products (PartitionMagic) will be useful overcoming this problem.
3) Extending the size of a drive by RAIDing two hard-disks together (often referred to as RAID 0) is dangerous, since if one disk fails for some reason, you will have to reformat the other.
4) Software RAIDs are usually considered inefficient. Most people use hardware-based RAID cards, which are not really expensive and preform much better. Such a card can also be used with Windows 2000 Pro.
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by:Eagle6990
ID: 12320352
If this was any other partition than the one you have your OS installed to, you could convert your disk to a Dynamic Disk and then you could expand your partition in the way you mentioned, but since it is the one with your OS, you cannot do it via Windows.  

The idea of adding a new HD and moving your Exchange DB to that disk is probably the best suggestion.  I personally would add two drives and make a RAID 1 mirror so if one drive fails you don't lose all of your Exchange data.  How large are your log files?  If you perform a full backup of Exchange using an Exchange aware backup program such as NTBackup then all your log files will be purged since you have a full backup of your DB.

Exchange is a pretty serious thing in most organizations and you might see if it would be possible to get a good sized comptuer for this, complete with hardware raid.
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by:Yan_west
ID: 12321682
to move your exchange data to another drive follow these instuctions:

How to Move Exchange Databases and Logs in Exchange 2000 Server

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;257184
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Author Comment

by:TechInNeedmm
ID: 12340117
Chatable
I had my server configured in a RAID setting awhile back but were experiencing some really odd behaviour on the server with files etc. I cannot remmeber the exact nature at the moment. But what i had to do was reformat and use one HD for C:\ (18 Gigs), and the last two drives as drive D:\ (36 Gigs).

Seeing that Drive C:\ and D:\ are almost to capacity, i need to move the Exchange DB and log files to a new HD.

Eagle6990
So u mean that if purchase another HD,let's say 120 gigs or so, I can convert my D:\ drive to a dynamic disk and then expand the partition to the newly created HD (ie. the 120 gig HD)? But wont this erase all data on the D:\ drive after converting it to a dynamic disk?
Also, if i add 2 more additional Hard drives, can i make a RAID 1 mirror even though my three other HDs are configured the way mentioned above?

Yan West.
Thanks for the link.
This will come in very handy if i go this route.
I also found:
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;238761
Cause i am running SBS 2000
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Author Comment

by:TechInNeedmm
ID: 12343029
hello?
anyone please?
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Accepted Solution

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Eagle6990 earned 500 total points
ID: 12343129
I'm on vacation this week so I'm not at a computer as often as normal.  If you already have a whole disk that is just D: and not a partition of the same disk that is C: then you could extend it.  When you convert the disk you will not lose any data, but you cannot use some file recovery programs such as Norton Ghost and a Partition Magic I believe.  Also, if you extend D: and either one of those drives fail you are screwed, so for something as important as Exchange it would not be advisable.

Getting two new drives and creating a mirror would be the best.  You could either put the two drives in your existing server, convert them to Dynamic disks and then create the mirror inside of Windows for the cheapest way.  The best way would be to also get a hardware RAID card that will do RAID 1 and create a hardware mirror.  This way, even if something happens to Windows, your data will still be there.  You could do this with SCSI or ATA drives, whichever fits your needs/budget.  

Once you get a bigger partition, however you do it, then you will want to follow the Microsoft article on moving your Exchange DB and logs to a new drive.
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