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Dell PERC RAID Re-size HDD Partitions

Posted on 2010-08-26
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Last Modified: 2013-12-01
We have a Dell PowerEdge 1750. The person that worked here before me set the partition sizes on the RAID at C: 12GB and D: 124GB. I am completely out of room on the C drive and need to know if it's possible to re-size the partitions (which I doubt it is).

Windows Server 2003 (SP2)
PERC 4/DI Controller
2 136GB HDDs

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Question by:fatboy1271
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by:markusdamenous
markusdamenous earned 63 total points
ID: 33537276
I think you would need to backup all data, reformat and repartition drives in the PERC controller, then reinstall/restore OS from backup.
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by:markusdamenous
ID: 33537281
If you added a new HDD(s), you may be able to expand current RAID and allocate more space to C:
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by:acesover2000
acesover2000 earned 62 total points
ID: 33537486
Instead of recovering from a backup, I recommend taking a system image.  The easiest (and cheapest) way to do this would be to use clonezilla or dd from ubuntu server edition, which should read your data natively.

RAID resizing is frequently not supported by the controller or software, so you'll likely have to image off and image on.
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by:clw3388
ID: 33537556
this sounds like a partition size issue not a raid issue..  BACKUP YOUR DATA... Now that that is plain as mud... you can "resize" your partitions by using gparted.. It is a boot cd and works great.. but again please backup your data because bad things that can happen will happen if it isn't backed up..
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by:clw3388
ID: 33537566
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by:PowerEdgeTech
ID: 33538518
If you have room on your D drive, you can sometimes extend C into that space, BUT you have to backup and delete D first, extend, then restore.  You can use Dell's ExtPart or a Server 2008 DVD to extend C.  Deleting D is sometimes easy, sometimes not ... you will have to decide.

There are third-party (and usually expensive) utilities that can resize the partitions while keeping partition data intact, like Acronis Disk Director.

Otherwise, the best way to do this is to reinstall with the desired partition size.

Whatever method you choose, make sure you have a backup, because there is no risk-free way of doing this.
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Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 33539854
Why do you doubt in the fact that resize is possible? Try Paragon Partition Manager 11 Server Edition: www.partition-manager.com
Look the attached video example how the resize is done.
Resize-simple.exe
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by:CorpComp
ID: 33540045
We doubt because we have tried and been burned.

If you want to resize using Partition Manager, do it with a stiff drink and a solid backup.
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by:PowerEdgeTech
ID: 33542220
That is why a backup is so important ... because anything can happen.  There is no risk-free way of doing this, but many people do it with no problems.  You just were unlucky.  (Sorry.)  :)
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by:clw3388
ID: 33544085
I have seen partitions be expanded using a windows 2008 setup cd as well. Do ya got one to try ?
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by:PowerEdgeTech
ID: 33544397
To clarify and review my comment earlier ... a Server 2008 or 2008R2 DVD (or even a Windows Vista or Windows 7 DVD) can do the expansion, but only if D is deleted first.  
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Author Comment

by:fatboy1271
ID: 33544449
Hi All,

Thanks for all the suggestions! Not sure which, if any, I am willing to try right now, but I will continue to go over these options...
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by:noxcho
ID: 33544541
Good luck and ask us before applying anything physically.
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by:
Tony Giangreco earned 62 total points
ID: 33603774
I've run into this exact situation at three clients. They all had Dell servers with a Perc Raid5 setup. All had a C partition that was under 1 gig free and they all run Backup Exec 12.5 because that is what I recommend.

Option #1 - If you have Backup Exec 12.5
- Run a total server backup to an external drive (1 or 2 TB external USB works great)
- Run the Intelligent Disaster Recovery Wizard and burn a IDR CD or DVD.
- Remove the old raid drives - put them in a safe place for insurance.
- Install larger replacement drives
- Define the raid in Perc utility
- Start the server with the IDR CD or DVD you created
- When Backup Exec starts, direct ti to expand the partitions to the new sive you want.
- Let the IDR restore process run
- Perform a restart after the IDR completes, let the server run for an hour to allow it to adjust to the additional space

Option #2 - Using Partition manager from Paragon Software
- Run a total server backup to an external drive (1 or 2 TB external USB) using Paragon Partition manager
- Remove the old raid drives - put them in a safe place for insurance.
- Install larger replacement drives
- Define the raid in Perc utility
- restore using Partition Manager
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by:Tony Giangreco
ID: 36470872
Have any of the suggestions worked?
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by:sharedit
sharedit earned 63 total points
ID: 37945124
I have used ghost to do this in the past.  Take the image, resotre the image, and change your partition sizes through options in the restore process.

I acrually did this through some level of DELL perc 5 once, it was extreamly slow to create and restore the image.  I was restoring back to 500 GB drives.

So plan for quite a bit of down time, leave yourself a big Window. Depending on what you are running/services on your server, it may be quicker to start over.

Not sure about the environmnemt, a single server SBS environment would not be ideal for a complete redo.
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Author Comment

by:fatboy1271
ID: 39355998
I never tried a solution and moved on.
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Author Comment

by:fatboy1271
ID: 39356029
I've requested that this question be closed as follows:

Accepted answer: 0 points for fatboy1271's comment #a39355998

for the following reason:

I never tried a solution and moved on.
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Author Comment

by:fatboy1271
ID: 39356016
Although some comments seem like they could have helped, it did not seem worth the time and effort. The server was decommissioned.
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Expert Comment

by:PowerEdgeTech
ID: 39356019
There were several tested/proven solutions presented here ... I would recommend you try these solutions in a test environment so you can become more familiar with your options.
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Author Closing Comment

by:fatboy1271
ID: 39356030
I never tried but these seem to present the best things to try.
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