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Add more hard drives to Windows Server 2003/Exchange

Posted on 2011-10-27
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Hello,

I have an Exchange server 2007 running on a Windows 2003 Standard server.

Currently it has RAID 5 with 3 hard drives, I'm going to add 4 more to increase disk space.

So my plan was in Disk Management to convert the existing disk from Basic to Dynamic and then extend the D drive to the new disk drives.

Does this sound like a logical plan?

Thanks,
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Question by:mightyquinn889
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Expert Comment

by:Miguel Angel Perez Muñoz
ID: 37038486
This 4 new disks will be a new RAID or part of existent? Have got RAID controller? maybe RAID controller will add and expand the existent disk automatically
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Busbar earned 500 total points
ID: 37038502
you need to use the RAID management software to do that.
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Expert Comment

by:Paul MacDonald
ID: 37038503
I'm not at all certain this is possible.  In any case, I'd make sure you have known good backups before you start.
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by:Gary Coltharp
Gary Coltharp earned 1500 total points
ID: 37038508
I would add your new disks in a new array then move your databases to it. Leave the logfiles and the rest of the space eaters where they are. Use the new array only for the databases.

I don't believe what you are descibing above will work.

If your server has a software RAID manager, you may be able to reconfigure your RAID array to incorporate the new disks in to the existing array. Then you can use partition software to grow the data partition.

Hope this helps.
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Expert Comment

by:Paul MacDonald
ID: 37038527
...and now that I see you're on Server 2003 I'm even less certain.  

I'd plan on backing everything up, wiping the array, adding the disks, rebuilding the array, then restoring.  I may be wrong, but I don't think so.
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Author Comment

by:mightyquinn889
ID: 37038541
the server is a HP Proliant that does the RAID.  Yes, it will be a new RAID because I can't add them to the existing RAID due to no cache battery.

So what you guys are saying it create a new drive F: and then copy the Exchange database to there?

Thanks,
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Expert Comment

by:Paul MacDonald
ID: 37038565
I was under the impression this was a software RAID.  Is it a hardware RAID?  That actually improves the odds it's extendible...

That said, if you can create a new array without any heartache, that may be the way to go.
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Expert Comment

by:Gary Coltharp
ID: 37038571
Yes...that would be best way to approach, imho
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Author Comment

by:mightyquinn889
ID: 37038575
so you recommend just extending the existing D: drive?

what are your guys thoughts on dynamic disks?  one member on here keeps warning me never to use dynamic disk only basic
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Assisted Solution

by:Gary Coltharp
Gary Coltharp earned 1500 total points
ID: 37038594
You can extend it IF you can manipulate your RAID array with the manufacturers software RAID manager.

Otherwise, go drive F:

Dynamic Disks are awesome if you dont have a hardware RAID controller...but any server worth its transistors has a RAID controller making dynamic disks obsolete.

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Expert Comment

by:Paul MacDonald
ID: 37038596
Dynamic disks are fine (great even) but not all third-party disk tools work with them.

As to the other:  I don't recommend trying to extend the existing array.  I vote start from scratch (if you can).  In either case, have good backups!
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Expert Comment

by:Busbar
ID: 37038612
don't copy , just move the database using the EMC
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Author Comment

by:mightyquinn889
ID: 37038617
ok so I think I'll go the safe route and create a new F: drive and move the Exchange database to there.

Next dumb question:  to move the exchange database I just right click on it dismount and move , correct?

Thanks,
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LVL 12

Assisted Solution

by:Gary Coltharp
Gary Coltharp earned 1500 total points
ID: 37038677
ERm...no... use the Exchange Management Console and use the Move Database wizard.

Mail will be down so plan the move accordingly.
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