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how much time required to expand a virtual disk (3x18-GB RAID 5) per gigabyte on a Dell PERC 3/Di

How much time (total or minutes per gigabyte) is required to expand a virtual disk (3x18-GB RAID 5) on a Dell PERC 3/Di controller from 4GB to 15GB? -- so I'll know whether or not to go for supper (at 19:24) or go home for sleep and return fresh in the morning to reconnect my server to the LAN/WAN for my users.  Thanks.
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yantisr
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yantisr
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Never done it - I've generally believed you have to backup, kill the raid, remake it as a larger drive, then restore.  What software are you planning on doing this with?
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yantisrAuthor Commented:
Dell's 'OpenManage Array Manager'  MMC plugin -- (right-click on the virtual disk icon in the OAM tree and enter the new size you wish the disk to be within the minimum and maximum limits indicated for the particular vdisk) -- (making sure, of course, to disconnect the server from the network to eliminate any unrelated disk accesses).  This process worked just fine to re-configure the array from a 2-drive RAID 1 array (mirror) to a 3-drive RAID 5 array.  Just not sure of the duration length -- (Dell guesses it to be 5 minutes per GB; my calculations estimate 22-25 minutes per GB; it's already way past the 5 mins/GB estm).
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Cool - Never knew you could do that - once asked dell - YEARS AGO - and they said it couldn't be done.  (maybe not back then - or maybe the tech was an idiot.  Equally likely).
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
With Compaq controllers you can set the rebuild and expansion priority to high or low depending on how important it is for the expansion to finish against how much it slows down OS access to the data. Makes a big difference if the controller is battery backed.

Why not leave it on the network and let it expand over night, it's not something you normally watch, had a terrabyte array that it took several days to expand on a proliant server.
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yantisrAuthor Commented:
Already completed - took 4 hours, 15 minutes - not too bad -- (and I went home and had a few hours sleep too).

I prefered to keep it disconnected at Dell's suggestion, to keep to minimum any potential glitches, and it was at night (very few users).  (Although, I did do a RAID 1 to RAID 5 conversion on a non-system/boot virtual drive on a live production server during the day.  And the only caveat that I experienced was that if a user had already authenticated to ADS and MAPed drives to the server, they were fine.  But no new logins were allowed -- perhaps because this virtual drive contained the Pagefile volume, but not sure.)

(The Dell PERC Array controller is battery backed -- thank goodness.)

Thanks, guys, for the feedback and timely info.
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
There is one caveat you should be aware of, if you have dynamic disks them back up before you reboot, whenever that will be. There's a generic bug where data loss can occur on reboot with dynamic disks after expansion/migration that MS haven't fixed so the RAID controller manufacturers have each fixed it with firmware updates. No worries with basic disks though.
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yantisrAuthor Commented:
Thanks.  I am aware of this issue.  But am using basic disks on this server -- and have already rebooted, after using PowerQuest (Symantec)'s 'Volume Manager' to expand the actual 'C:' volume to the desired 15GB, with no problems, thank goodness.

Again, this is great feedback.
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
By all means refund and PAQ,  http:Q_21212615.html#12627243 contains the actual time it took yantisr to expand the array so the accepted answer should be that or
http:Q_21212615.html#12620877 which contains the same 4 hrs 15 minutes.
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moduloCommented:
Closed, 500 points refunded.

Thanks andyalder !

modulo
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