Disk Replacement: SCO Open Server

Posted on 2004-11-22
Last Modified: 2013-12-05
Quick question:  The OS is SCO Open Server 5.Something can't remember for sure but I don't think it really matters.

I have a disk that I want to replace because it is making some unusual noises and there is no fault tolerance in this system.  This system has been in production for quite sometime and I am nervous that it is ready to take a dump.

Can I just add the new disk to the system and perform a DD if=/dev/(current disk device) of=/dev/(new disk device) and then swap the new disk in once the operation is complete?

I am hoping that it would be this easy.   Of couse this system is old so I am not sure I will be able to find the same exact disk.  Will this be a factor?  If so, I am not interesested in salvaging space on a newer disk if I have to purchase something larger than the 9G that I have in the system currently.

Thank you,

Question by:isaint
    LVL 38

    Expert Comment

    You can use "dd" to clone the disk, but if you new HD is bigger in size, you will wast some disk space.

    A better way to do it is to perform a full system backup to a tape, and then you "divvy" to partion your new disk (same number of partions, size of each partion >= old one).

    then use emerency FDs (Boot and Root FDs), boot up the system to single user mode,
    and then mount all the filesystem and restore it from backup.

    cd /
    find . -print | cpio -oacv -O /dev/rStp0

    #backup the whole system to a tape.

    or just boot up the harddisk to single use mode, and use "cpio" to copy each filesystem
    to the new harddisk.

    also see: http:Q_21059011.html for more details.

    PS: if you use "dd" to copy the HD, the harddisk ID is also copied accross, you don't need
          to go to the SCO website to re-register the system.
          For the "cpio" sulution, you need to re-register the system, and then run scoadmin to
          put the new key in.

    Good luck!
    LVL 38

    Expert Comment

    You can also use  symantec ghost  (6.x or newer) to ghost SCO UNIX with two identical Hardisk. (I have try it a few years ago).

    But personally, I would not use ghost, the UNIX dd command can do the some job (image copy).


    Author Comment

    I am not interested in adding any additional space to this server- keeping it up is my main concern.   I am also not interested in using any 3rd party apps such as ghost.  

    So am I to understand that my syntax above for the "dd" command will do the trick?  What I mean is that if I choose to use a larger disk and use dd will there be any problems cloning it using this method or do I need to add any additional flags/arguments to the syntax.

    Thank you for the responses and the help!

    LVL 38

    Accepted Solution

    The systax for "dd" is very simple:
          dd if=/dev/<device-of-source> of=/dev/<device-of-target>

    man dd
    to learn more details.

         The problem is that you need to add the new harddisk to your system (reconfigure
    the kernel!).

         I think it is a lot easy to download g4u (FD image, use rawrite or dd to copy the
    image to a FD). then just plug your new harddisk in the clone the disk. (g4u is very
    easy to use, it can handle SCO, FreeBSD, Solaris X86 and M$ Windows ...)
        Here's the link:

       >>  What I mean is that if I choose to use a larger disk and use dd will there be any problems cloning it using this method or do I need to add any additional flags/arguments to the syntax.

       Apart from you lost the extra disk space and the HD ID is copied accross, I can see any
    other problem, I have no worked with SCO for a long time now.


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