Increase RAID size Dell PowerEdge 26000

I have a Dell Poweredge 2600 running Server 2003 with three 36GB hard drives on a Perc4 controller with a RAID 5 configuration. I am running out of hard drive space so I bought three 72GB hard drives to replace the drives I have now. I was thinking of installing the three 72GB hard drives as a secondary RAID 5 configuration on the controller and using some type of software to copy and expand the partitions from the original to the new drives. What is the best way of doing this and what is the best software to use for this? I don't want to have to re-install the OS and re-configure all the software and settings I'm running on this. Your help is appreciated.
henryt32Asked:
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dekkarCommented:
have you had a look at Acronis Imaging software??

It works pretty well... perfect for your situation.....

You create an image of the server, plug the new disks in, create the array, and restore the image, specifying how large you want your partitions.....

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dekkarCommented:
and it works with most RAID controllers, and can see RAID arrays no problem.
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henryt32Author Commented:
Is there another solution besides using Acronis? I'm on a budget and it seems pricey for what I want to do. I wouldn't mind using it, but getting it approved for purchase is another thing.
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dekkarCommented:
hmmmmmmm maybe you can try and convince them using another angle....


ie. We use acronis on our mail server to back it up every day.... We take an image every day, so in the event of a failure, it takes me 1hr to get the server back up and running as it was yesterday.... No OS rebuild, no restore from tape, no having to reconfigure exchange.......

If you have to use this function once.... it has paid for itself.....

If you purchase the software, it isnt a one off use, the product remains installed on the server, and you can setup scheduled image snapshots......

And again, you can use it when you upgrade servers/HDDs.....
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Check with Drive Backup 9.0 Server Edition from Paragon: http://www.paragon-software.com/business/db-server/
Costs 299$ and if you consider it to be expensive then try the free version, less functionality but for your specific needs must work. At least it can backup and restore volumes so backup your existing configuration and restore it to new RAID. Boot from new RAID and remove old one.
I would strongly recommend using the commercial version as it provides high level tech support and backup imaging software that you can run on daily basis via Windows Task Scheduler.
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henryt32Author Commented:
Ok I figured it out. I made a Bart PE boot disk using the Server 2003 files and I downloaded and added the DriveImage XML plug-in (free by the way). I shut down the server and added the 3 new drives to the RAID controller and set them up as its own array and initiliazed it. I rebooted the server, went into Computer Management and then to Disk Management. I created the first partition as a Primary to the size I wanted and then the rest as a logical partition. I did a quick format on them and after it was finished, I restarted the server. I boot into the Bart PE CD and started the DriveImage XML program and proceeded to copy the boot partition over. When that was done, I restarted the server, went back into the RAID manager and made the new array as the boot. Tada!, it worked! I went ahead and proceeded to move the rest of the data from the second partition over, restarted the server when it was done, changed the pagefile parameters and I was back in business and my server has been running awesome since it has more breathing room. I eventually formatted my old drives and I use it now for backups and folder shares. Thanks for your suggestions, but this worked out pretty good.
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spookawCommented:
Acronis developed a freeware version for Seagate. Here is the link to the freeware version of Acronis. See what you think? I would be interested in your comments.

http://www.seagate.com/www/en-us/support/downloads/discwizard
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