Expand Raid 5 Volume Intel Matrix Storage Console

I had a drive fail in my 3 drive Raid 5 array.  The drives were all 250GB in size.  I replaced the each drive with 500GB drives and had it rebuild the array.

This is a ESB2 Sata Raid controller with Intel Matrix Storage Console.

How can I expand the volume to use the extra space without having to reinstall.

Can I use modify volume to do this or will I have to get Partition Magic?
troyzoschkeAsked:
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DavidPresidentCommented:
You have to reinstall.  The free space is NOT a partition, but is unused space on the RAID controller that is not assigned to a volume.  
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DavidPresidentCommented:
By the way, I hope you have true enterprise class disks, and not desktop.   This controller simply will not work right with desktop class disks in RAID5, and you have high risk of data loss if you pick up any bad blocks unless you have enterprise disks.

Neither Intel, nor disk manufacturers qualify the Matrix with desktop drives in RAID5.  WD even has in their datasheets that it voids their warranty.

If you value your data, then I suggest you just go to RAID1 and use the other disk as a spare, or get a 4th disk and go RAID10. (If you don't have enterprise/server class drives, that have the special firmware with TLER enabled, among other things).

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troyzoschkeAuthor Commented:
So reinstall is only option?  Could I image the array with ghost or other software, create a new raid 5 array and then restore image to the new array?

Really I wish it was a raid 10.  I used WD RE3 drives so TLER is enabled.
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DavidPresidentCommented:
Check the latest Matrix manuals/firmware/BIOS info on the intel site.  There is always possibility that they enhanced the product with an update.  The deal is that when you swap & upgrade, the controller just rebuilds from HDD physical block 0 to the highest block number in the disk that was replaced.

Metadata is not adjusted, partitions are not moved.  This is a profoundly dumb controller.   There is no "free area" that is exposed to the BIOS, so there is nothing for a partitioning software package to see.  The chip exposes the same block number range and disk capacity to the O/S as what it exposed before the update.  That is why nothing will work.  Ghost sees what the BIOS sees.  

... unless Intel enhanced their product, or has something on their website to resize.  They might, I haven't looked lately.

So you can use ghost, as long as you have a version with the matrix drivers.  That is what I would do.  Besides, you want a good bootable backup solution anyway.
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Does your Windows Disk Manager see the extra space after drive replacement?
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troyzoschkeAuthor Commented:
Answer given was for general raid, not specific to my raid hardware.
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