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Change Logical Boot Volume

Posted on 2011-02-20
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Last Modified: 2016-10-27
Hi
My first post here.

I have a HP ML350 G5 server setup with 2x36gb 0+1 mirror and 4x72Gb RAID 5 they are 2.5 SAS drives there is a total of 8 bays 6 being used.
The OS mirror is getting rather full only 12% freespace and that is after moving the swapfile to the RAID 5 array.
I have purchased another 2 72Gb drives to replace the 36Gb drives but i cannot get the server to boot from the new drives.
this is what i have done:

1.  installed the 2 new drives into the spare bays
2. created a new 0+1 volume (36gb= volume 1, raid 5= volume 2, new drives= volume 3)
3. used Acronis backup & recovery 10 to clone volume 1 to volume 3
4. shutdown server and removed the physical drives from volume 1
5. moved the new volume 3 drives from bays 7 + 8 to bays 1 + 2 where the old volume 1 drives were
6. restarted server the E200i controller recognised the discs and automatically updated
7. E200i complained about the 2 missing drives but gave me the option to press F2 ignore and continued to start

But it will not boot into windows it just tries to find other boot options ie network boot.
so i shut the server down and put the 2 old drives into the spare bays (7 + 8) again the controller recognised the drives and booted from the old 36gb drives into windows.
I need to be able to boot from the new volume how do i tell the e200i controller which volume to boot from?

The only thing i can think of is the 'boot marker' but i do not know how to flag a volume as bootable!

thank you for looking
Kevan
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Question by:t3chie
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LVL 118
ID: 34937048
1. Power Off Server.

2. Keep all the disks in the Server.

3. Download Gparted from http://gparted.sourceforge.net/livecd.php

4. Boot from CD or USB, whichever option you download.

5. HIghlight the disks, and partition, and change to Boot flag to boot.
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LVL 118
ID: 34937056
what I normally do as well, to "clear the RAID array config", the config is stored on each disk, so is read in again, if found.

1. Power down server.

2. I remove all disks, or just unplug from chassis, no need to really remove.

3. Power on server and let it boot, it should not find any disks. Config is not read in from disks.

4. Power Off.

5. Insert disks.

6. Power on, it will then read in config from disks.
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Author Comment

by:t3chie
ID: 34937057
Hi hanccocka
Ok i will try that in the morning.
what about the old boot mirror do i change anything on that?
regards
Kevan
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LVL 118
ID: 34937064
No, change nothing.
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Author Comment

by:t3chie
ID: 34937070
I am concerned about the raid 5 array if i unplug the discs and clear the config will i lose any data?
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Accepted Solution

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andyalder earned 500 total points
ID: 34937102
>I need to be able to boot from the new volume how do i tell the e200i controller which volume to boot from?

If only you could, but you can't.
Smart Array controllers will only boot from Array A, logical disk 1. No amount of disk shuffling will help there.

In this instance you might as well put it back how it was (removing the new disks you just bought), then remove one 36GB disk and replace with 72GB and let it repair the mirror, repeat with other 72GB, go into the ACU and extend the logical disk, finally use a 3rd party tool to extend the OS partition*. You'll have to do the swapping hot unless you want to wipe the 2*72GB ones first or the metadata on them will confuse the controller.

You obviously backup first in case there's an unnoticed bad block on one of the current 36GB disks.

BTW, it's RAID 1+0, not 0+1 (actually it's RAID 1 but the ACU doesn't show it as that but it doesn't really matter as far as increasing C: size is concerned.

* Bootit NG, paragon partition manager etc.
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Author Comment

by:t3chie
ID: 34937121
Hi andyalder
 >Smart Array controllers will only boot from Array A, logical disk 1. No amount of disk shuffling will help there.

so the option hanccocka gave me you are saying wont work??
with your solution should i delete the new volume 3 i created first?
If i unplug the first 36gb while the server is powered on wouldnt the server crash?

forgive me but i thought the idea of a mirror was redundancy and if the main drive failed the mirror takes over, are you saying the e200i is capable of doing this on the fly?? and if i put the 72gb as a replacement would the controller not complain about size difference?

regards
kevan
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LVL 118
ID: 34937132
swings and roundabouts, andyalder has just given you another option, be prepared for a long wait with array expansion, and logical disk expansion.

as you've already got the clone, it would take no time, to change the boot flag, if that is what the problem is!

However the clone operation may not have worked!

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Author Comment

by:t3chie
ID: 34937144
Hi

>as you've already got the clone, it would take no time, to change the boot flag, if that is what the problem is!

However the clone operation may not have worked!

I have verified the clone (was the first thing i did) what andyalder is saying is that no matter what i do i cannot boot from any volume other than 'Volume 1'
with your solution clearing the config, would that make 'Volume 3' become 'Volume 1'  because of the boot flag?

forgive me if my understanding is wrong.
regards
kevan
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Expert Comment

by:andyalder
ID: 34937177
It's RAID 1 so logical drive expansion is pretty fast in that case. RAID 5 re-leveling (and rebuilding) is what takes ages and fortunately that's not the case here. Shouldn't take much more than an hour unless it's doing lots of OS work as well and I doubt it's doing any user disk tasks at the moment as it's Sunday unless you're in Australia.

It's all done on the fly except since it's C: you can't extend the Windows volume (unless Win2008) without offline tools. So long as the disk is the same size or bigger it'll rebuild automatically if it's done hot, sometimes you're forced to replace with bigger as the smaller ones aren't on sale any more.

You would  have to delete volume 3 first, both the logical disk and the array it's on since you will have to remove those disks. The server won't crash if you take a disk out live, that's what RAID is for.
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by:t3chie
ID: 34937180
What if i delete volume 1 and volume 3  and create a new volume with the new discs would the controller choose the next logical number 3 because volume 2 exists or would it create a new volume 1 because it does not exist?

or would my best option be to clone all volumes to an external drive delete them all and recreate them then restore the clones?
I thought it would of been a simple task to upgrade the discs more fool me !
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LVL 118
ID: 34937181
I could be wrong here, but if you remove original volume1, and replace with volume3 (doesn't that become volume1!). Unless the current array config, is stored on ALL disks, including the other set of RAID 5! (which would always make it volume 3, even if you change it's location)

Boot flag - active boot parition is set on the partition information, it has nothing to do with the Array configuration.

it shouldn't take you long to test!
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Expert Comment

by:andyalder
ID: 34937195
>What if i delete volume 1 and volume 3  and create a new volume with the new discs would the controller choose the next logical number 3 because volume 2 exists or would it create a new volume 1 because it does not exist?

I'm not quite sure on that, it's not something you're meant to do although I've played around with doing that in the past I dodn't get consistent results.

Some things are easy - like online logical disk extansion, some things can be hard as HP won't release a tool to manually edit the metadata to ghance array letters about.
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Expert Comment

by:andyalder
ID: 34937203
ghance = change, I should learn to type. The metadata is stored on every disk that's on the controller, not just the first two.
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Author Comment

by:t3chie
ID: 34937222
>ghance = change, I should learn to type. The metadata is stored on every disk that's on the controller, not just the first two.

if that is the case i dont have any options! because if i clone the discs the metadata will also be cloned!
so volume 1 would always be volume 1 etc.. then again when i cloned volume 1 to volume 3 it did not change the metadata it was still volume 3!! so im now a little confused!!
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by:andyalder
ID: 34937268
Metadata is hidden from the OS so it won't be on any image you made. You could for instance replace disk 1 then disk 2 and extend the logical disk using the ACU as I said before but then restore the image to it rather than extend the volume.
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Author Comment

by:t3chie
ID: 34937287
Because i do not know how long it will take to rebuild the mirror i cannot try any of this until out of hours next Friday. At least then i will have a buffer of the weekend.
So until then i do not know which solution to accept! i will try both and award whomever solution works. thank you both very much for your help
Kevan
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Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 34941119
The easiest way that would suit your needs exactly is the to backup your 36GB mirror volumes using Acronis or any other backup & recovery software. Then replace the HDDs in RAID1 with bigger drives.
Boot the server from Recovery CD for backup tool you used to backup the RAID and restore from image back to new drives.
Use resize proportionally option so to allocate the new space to system drive during restore.
This would take less time and run smoothly.
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Author Comment

by:t3chie
ID: 34941140
Hi noxcho
>The easiest way that would suit your needs exactly is the to backup your 36GB mirror volumes using Acronis or any other backup & recovery software. Then replace the HDDs in RAID1 with bigger drives.
Boot the server from Recovery CD for backup tool you used to backup the RAID and restore from image back to new drives.
Use resize proportionally option so to allocate the new space to system drive during restore.
This would take less time and run smoothly.

This is exactly what i have done!! the image is not the problem its the booting!
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Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 34941156
But according to your original description you did not do exactly what I am recommending:
1.  installed the 2 new drives into the spare bays
2. created a new 0+1 volume (36gb= volume 1, raid 5= volume 2, new drives= volume 3)
3. used Acronis backup & recovery 10 to clone volume 1 to volume 3
4. shutdown server and removed the physical drives from volume 1
5. moved the new volume 3 drives from bays 7 + 8 to bays 1 + 2 where the old volume 1 drives were

The idea is that you take backup into file (on USB drive or network share) then reconfigure your RAID with bigger drives (no spare bays are needed) and recover the image to the same RAID1 but with bigger drive capacity.

In your case, when you copied the system to new volume you updated the boot.ini and boot sector of the drive. They are pointing to wrong drive now.
And if you backup drive 1 and restore it to drive 1 (by drive 1 I mean RAID1 detected by Windows as single HDD) then it should have no problem.
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by:noxcho
ID: 34941158
Backup backup I meant backup of working system under Windows.
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by:andyalder
ID: 34941183
Ain't going to work noxcho since moving the disks from bays 7&8 to 1&2 does not make them bcome array A, they'll still be array C.

The controller will shout "Drive Array - Physical Drive Position Change(s) Detected" on POST and will either automatically update the RIS to reflect the new positions or it will tell you to put them back to where they should be. Either way they won't become array A so won't be bootable.
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Author Comment

by:t3chie
ID: 34941206
So basically your are saying take an image of my boot mirror, delete the volume, boot server create new volume with the 72gb drives, boot server with acronis copy image to 72gb drives.

>if i delete volume 1 and volume 3  and create a new volume with the new discs would the controller choose the next logical number 3 because volume 2 exists or would it create a new volume 1 because it does not exist?
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Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 34941523
You are working with Hardware RAID, aren't you?

Andy, if he simply replaces the drives (36GB drives) with bigger drives in the same bays, is there any reason it should not work?
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Author Comment

by:t3chie
ID: 34941766
yes it is hardware raid HP ML350 G5 E200i Raid Controller
Array A = 2x36Gb OS Mirror
Array B = 4x72Gb Data Array RAID 5
Array C = 2x72GB NEW OS Mirror

I have worked on servers for over 20 years never come across this problem before, first time i have used a E200i controller normally use Perc controllers (Dell)
regards
Kevan
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Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 34941995
If you backup Array A and then reconfigure Array A with bigger drives - then restore from backup over Array A then it should work IMHO.
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Expert Comment

by:andyalder
ID: 34942498
Yes, covered that in id 34937268
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by:noxcho
ID: 34943327
Then if he uses non backup&recovery method he would need additional partitioning tool that would allocate space to system partition.
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