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Dell PercH700 Raid Controller in a T410 Box

I have as is RAID 1
300GB drive twice

I am out of space and need to expand.

If I add another 300GB drive , wont I have to go to RAID 5 ?

Does anyone know if it is safe and easy to use the boot up Ctrl-S to get into the RAID manager and make a change like this.

I am just nervous because this is a production machine.
1 Solution
Yes, you would have to migrate to RAID 5. As this controller supports migration from RAID 1 to RAID 5, it should be safe, but it is still important that you have at least one known good backup before you start, and you should also first make sure you have installed the newest firmware on the controller and also for the PC's BIOS.
Syed_M_UsmanSystem AdministratorCommented:
i think its not possible and can lead you to disaster.

1) you will loss all you data
2) your current raid is Raid 1, once you change raid to Raid 5 the current configuration on raid will flush automatically.

you can add 3 more 300GB HDD into your server, create separate Raid 5, transfer your things from your current full volume to new volume. or
you can add 2 more 300GB HDD into your server, create separate Raid 1, transfer your things from your current full volume to new volume.

i recommend you don't delete or modify existing Raid.

If you have openmanage server administrator installed, you can do this online by logging in to openmanage, clicking on the storage tab, clicking on the virtual disk and selecting reconfigure from the dropdown menu.

Whilst this is rebuilding (a considerable amount of time - overnight/weekend), the performance of your system will be significantly degraded.

This is a solution Dell will support if you call them. I completely understand people who are not comfortable with this.
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Deep down in the bowels of the documentation, you'll find that online expansion from RAID1->RAID5 is supported.  You'll also find where it tells you that best practice is to backup first.
You should make sure that patrol operations are enabled and that it did a consistency check before you start. This insures that NEITHER disk has any bad/unreadable blocks and every block (other than the metadata matches).

If you do not have the battery backup option then buy that first. This covers you in event of either a drive failure in the middle of the process, or power failure. (It also may even be a prerequisite for expansion, can't remember .. so look it up).  Besides, the battery backup for cache will immensely speed up writes.
bhamguy3131Author Commented:
Hey I was wrong.

We are RAID 5 now at 3 , 146GB drives.

I plan to order 2 more 146 at same RPM speed and they are indeed hot swappable.

So , do I add them with machine on or off  ??

Once I add them , what do I do to get the RAID array to initiate a processing of the new drives  ??

I dont think I have ever used Dell Open Manage but I guess I can install this if it is the easiest way to do this.

I want something easy I cant mess up .
The H700 fully supports the migration from a 2 disk Raid 1 to a 3 Disk Raid 5. This is extremely safe and should be performed within Open Manage Server Administrator

Check out this video
How to reconfigure an array using OpenManage Storage Services
Philip ElderTechnical Architect - HA/Compute/StorageCommented:
What we would do:

Back up using SBS backup.
Change all drives for 300GB 15K SAS.
Restore System partition to increased volume.
Restore Swap Partition (we run a separate one).
Restore Data partition to the balance.

This gives the RAID controller the opportunity to write the configuration to the new disks properly.

We crash and restore all of our production servers just prior to deploying them into production to verify the backup and media.

Thanks. :(

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