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

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!
jamessaAsked:
Who is Participating?
I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

IPKON_NetworksCommented:
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
0

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
jamessaAuthor Commented:
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?
0
IPKON_NetworksCommented:
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
0
Ultimate Tool Kit for Technology Solution Provider

Broken down into practical pointers and step-by-step instructions, the IT Service Excellence Tool Kit delivers expert advice for technology solution providers. Get your free copy now.

jamessaAuthor Commented:
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
0
mcp_jonCommented:
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 !
0
mcp_jonCommented:
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 !
0
jamessaAuthor Commented:
Should you add the new disks while the system is running?
0
mcp_jonCommented:
I see no problem on that !

Best Regards !
0
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Storage

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.

Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.