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How to add more space to a raid 5 on Dell 2800 Dell PERC 4e/Di Raid controller

Posted on 2006-04-04
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I have 3 73 GB scsi drives configured from the factory as raid 5.  It is setup with a 20 gb partition for the C: drive and the rest is for data.  This is my backup server and we are quickly running out of space.  I am down to 27 gb on my data partition, down from 36 last month.  I would need to add atleast 2 more 73 gb hard drives to the mix.  Is this possible with the Dell PERC 4e/Di controller without having to format and start over?  If so haas anyone done it to give me some insight.  I would of course backup everything before moving forward.

Thanks!
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Question by:jamessa
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IPKON_Networks earned 1000 total points
ID: 16371375
Absolutely possible. Simply add in your drives to the array. They will then appear in your RAID CONFIGURATOR util as new drives. You can the right click on them one at a time and add to the existing array. I would do this one at a time (I think you can do them both at once) and leave the drives to level before adding in the next.

Depending on how much/fast/fragmented your data is, it should level out to 4 drives within 1 hour. You would then see your volume increase from 146GB to 219GB  and then to 292GB (or there abouts).

If you are using Windows 2000/2003 and basic disks then you will need to reboot the server to see the extra space. If Dynamic disks then the space will appear immediately. It may appear as unformatted extra space (if dynamic) in which case you will need to simply right click the new volume in DISK MANAGER and choose EXTEND VOLUME. This will be almost immediate (30 seconds max).

Personally, I would do this all with the server shut down and use the BOOT utils which comes up during the POST process. Press F1 (I think.. it's different on every server) and use the util there. Much safer for Windows not to see what you are doing !!!!

Hope this helps
Barny
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by:jamessa
ID: 16371591
OK, I have a  question in responce to your answer.  First,  I have one virtual disk setup with 3 partitions.  Dell utility, C: and D: D: being the data which is the only place I need to add space to.  With me adding the new drives on to the existing virtual disk, how will I be able to just expand the d: partition?
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by:IPKON_Networks
ID: 16372038
Are your partitions created in Dell RAID controller or in OS?

If in RAID controller, you can add in the extra drives into the array. Then you will need to add in the blank space into your partition.

Can you give me some more info about how you have partitioned it up. I am assuming it has all been done via the RAID Controller.

Barny
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by:jamessa
ID: 16372673
I did not really know about the setup process as it was done at dell.  How would I tell?  In my Dell array manager I have a virtual disk 0 that is show as being split into Dell utility partition 39 mb then c: 20 gb then d: 88 gb.

Thanks
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by:mcp_jon
mcp_jon earned 1000 total points
ID: 16373111
Then you have only one Virtual Disk, which is Raid 5.

You need to insert the two new disks and go to the Dell Array manager and choose Expand Array !

Search here : " http://forums.us.dell.com/supportforums/board?board.id=pes_hardrive

You will find some problem just like yours :)

Best Regards !
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by:mcp_jon
ID: 16373145
Take a look at this one ( found it for you ) :

Title : " reconfigure raid on pe 2800 "
http://forums.us.dell.com/supportforums/board/message?board.id=pes_hardrive&message.id=22030

Documentation Page for " Dell OpenManage™ Array Manager " :
http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/software/smarrman/

Hope this helps you out !

Best Regards !
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by:jamessa
ID: 16640409
Should you add the new disks while the system is running?
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by:mcp_jon
ID: 16640794
I see no problem on that !

Best Regards !
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