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Raid 5 5.8 TB Partitions or no Partitions

Posted on 2013-05-13
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Last Modified: 2016-11-23
Dell shipped me a 5.8TB useable space Raid 5 configuration with server partitions. Do I need those partitions. I have a 2012 standard server and I'm going to run at least 2 vm's. Maybe 2 more. I don't want to be limited by partitions, can I delete these partitions (is that best practice?) IS there a size limit?
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Question by:earl_IT
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David earned 250 total points
ID: 39161172
Blow it all away and build whatever sizes you need.  But be aware that certain virtual operating systems have limits on the max sizes of the usable partition.  Also you most likely will not be able to boot any partition > 2.09TB
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by:earl_IT
ID: 39161181
Doesn't Hyper V expands as needed? If I blow them all away then the Hyper V can use whatever's needed, right?
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by:rindi
ID: 39161203
I would always partition your drives, as it simplifies things a lot. For example if a chkdsk needs to be done, it'll finish faster on small partitions than large ones (and such a chkdsk can take hours to finish, if not days), and during that time those partitions are offline and not usable.
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by:earl_IT
ID: 39161236
Would chkdsk be the only reason not too? If I have 4 vm's can't they do chkdsk on each vm?
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by:rindi
ID: 39161315
That's only one reason. I usually like to have separate partitions so that the type of data or whatever is on them can be organized better.

The chkdsk you do for the VM's you'd be doing inside the virtual file-system of that VM, but the virtual file-system is a file on the host file-system, so the chkdsk you'd do on the host tests the host file-system.
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Author Comment

by:earl_IT
ID: 39161742
so leave the size of the partitions, isn't the C drive a little to big? one vm I'll be putting in sql and Great plains.
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by:rindi
ID: 39161749
Depends on what you'll have on C:.
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by:Svet Paperov
Svet Paperov earned 250 total points
ID: 39161884
The hard disk drives of the virtual machines are saved as VHD or VHDX files on the physical partition, except if you are using pass-through disks. So, yes, the disk space must be partitioned on the Hyper-V host.

Be careful with the partitions bigger that 2 TB. Hyper-V 2012 supports them a repository for VHDX files but you won’t be able to create the old VHD files or import virtual machines created in Hyper-V 2008.

I would repartition this huge 5.8TB partition and create 3 2TB partitions before starting with the virtual machines. Do not keep the VHD files on the system volume C:\ because you could have performance issues.
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by:David Johnson, CD, MVP
ID: 39161993
Be careful with the partitions bigger that 2 TB. Hyper-V 2012 supports them a repository for VHDX files but you won’t be able to create the old VHD files or import virtual machines created in Hyper-V 2008.

Baloney! vhd files are limited in size to 2TB.  This does not mean that the DRIVE that the file (.vhd) goes onto is limited to 2TB.. I've used a 12TB Storage Array with no problems to store vhd's.

It looks like dell has it about right.. The limit of a MBR partition is 2.2TB.. Surprised that you are seeing the RAID5 volume as separate disks.
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