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HP SAN Hardware question

Hello:

We are running out of space on our SAN, for backups,  and are looking to add another hard drive cage.  We use our SAN for files storage and Vmware hard drive space.  We currently have the following installed at our faciltiy.

1.  HP Prolient DL320 G5.

2.  16 port Fiber SAN Switch.
        a.  HP StorageWorks 4/8 SAN Switch.

3.  HP StorageWorks MSA 1500 CS.

4.  HP StorageWorks MSA 20.
       a.  12-Sata Drives (all drives are used).
       b.  All Sata Drives are 500 GB.
       c.  However only have 4X500 GB Sata drives being used for backups.
              i.  Hence we use 1.5 TB for backups.
       d.  The remaining 8 hard drives are set in raid-5 for the 'Production' partition.

My question is if we purchase another HP StoreageWorks MSA20 hard drive cage (so we can add storage space to our existing backup and production setup), will we need to Setup a separate Raid-5 partition on the new MSA 20?    Also will we need to setup a new Raid-5 partition array, for the 'production' side, on the new HP Storageworks MSA 20 cage?

Or can those extra drives be added to the already existing raid-5 configuration?  Keep in mind that this will be on a brand new MSA 20 Hard drive cage.
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Pkafkas
Asked:
Pkafkas
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4 Solutions
 
theruckCommented:
you can extend the raid5 to the new drives in the new cage but it will take a lot of time counted in days until extended
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
You can add the disks to the existing array because they are connected to the same controller in the MSA1500cs. I wouldn't advise that many disks in RAID 5 though, if a disk fails there's an increasing chance of getting a read error on another disk during rebuild, I'd recommend converting all the logical disks to RAID6/ADG when you add the new physical disks to the array, then you can afford to have two simultaneous drive failures. RAID 6 is slower than RAID 5 but you're adding more disks so that won't be a problem as the extra disks will speed it up.

You will have to create additional logical disks on the expanded array since the MSA1500cs has a 2TiB limit.
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nappy_dCommented:
You can actually do better on your backups if you incorporate deduplication. Have you thought about that?
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PkafkasNetwork EngineerAuthor Commented:
We already duplicate to tape and store off-site.  Good idea to bring up though.
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PkafkasNetwork EngineerAuthor Commented:
How about if in MSA 20 cage 1 we use 500 GB drives.

But in MSA 20 cage 2, we were planning on using 1 TB drives, will tht still work?  Will we be able to join an already existing Raid array?
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PkafkasNetwork EngineerAuthor Commented:
That is with 2 different hard drive sizes?
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theruckCommented:
yes you can but you will waste the half capacity of the drive so the 1 TB drives will be acting as 500 GB only
if you intend to use different drives in the cages then you need to have 1 array in one cage and 2nd array in the other cage so you might need to do data transfers
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nappy_dCommented:
Did you me DEdupliate?
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driskolltCommented:
I'm not familiar with the terminology HP uses for their MSA line, but...


Can you just create a new RAID group with the new MSA20 then migrate your existing LUN to a larger LUN on the new MSA20?

You can then repurpose the original 5 disks for something else after that.
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PkafkasNetwork EngineerAuthor Commented:
So, there is no way to Expand a Raid Array while using the full capacity of different sized drives?

My manager really wants me to be sure about this.  There is another forum talking about this issue(using different size hard disks in the same raid array); but, it has a lot of different oppinions regaridng if it will use the full capacity or not.

http://icrontic.com/forum/showthread.php?t=47115

Bottom line it seems you have to talk to the Array Constroller's manufacturer to be sure.  Any thoughts?  About using different had drive sizes on the same array?
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
theruck is correct, you'll lose half the capacity of the 1TB disks if you use them in the same array as the 500GB ones, MSA1500cs is near enough a couple of HP Smart Array controllers in a box without a CPU.
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