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Correct partition sizes for physical servers running Windows Server 2012  Standard Hyper-v

Posted on 2013-06-17
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Hi

Just taken delivery of two Dell T420s, running Windows 2012 standard with Hyper-v enabled, to act as hosts for a total of 4 VMs.

 The first server (PS1) has an 837Gb RAID 1 array (intended for the Windows 2012 Hypervisor and the VM files) and a second RAID 5 (for the data VHDs)

The second server (PS2) also has an 837Gb RAID 1 array, but this time with a second RAID10 array (for a SQL server VHD).

There are two issues:-

1) On both servers, the RAID1 array is partitioned into 1x 40 Gb C drive and one 794Gb partition.

However, already the C drive, only has 6Gb free !  

Part of the reason for this is that it includes a 10Gb sample VHD that I can easily relocate to another partition or drive.

That would leave the C drive with about 16Gb free at present (40%), but over the life of the server (est 5 years) am I going to run into the age-old problem with default Microsoft partition sizes of  running out of disk space ?

If I am, now is the time to delete the other partition on the RAID1 array and re-size - but in which case, what are the recommendations  ?

One single 837Gb drive, a 200Gb  C drive partition etc?

2) The RAID10 data array on PS2 is partitioned as a single 2,234GB partitition, but the RAID-5 data array on PS1 is split into 3x 1,843Gb partitions and one 1,173 Gb partition.

Ideally, I would like to use the RAID-5 array as a single 5.6Tb partition, as it will all be used by a single VM file server, to store the company's general files (Word, Excel, PDF etc)

I recognise that NTFS has a 2Tb limit. I am also aware that a bigger partition would mean, for example, that chkdsk would take longer to run, but 1,843Gb partitions would force me to  create "arbitary" divisions in my data, which do not actually match the needs of my business.

Over the life of the server, this might mean that one partition becomes full, whilst another is,say,  still 75% empty...

As such, the desire is for fewer, but bigger partitions  if at all possible, but very much open to 'best advice'.


As always, I look forward to any Expert guidance on both of these points.

Kind regards

Horatio_too.
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Question by:horatio_too
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LVL 123

Accepted Solution

by:
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 2000 total points
ID: 39252812
We partition the OS at 120GB. (also remember paging file will create a pagefile = memory of the host)

We also use Resilient File System (ReFS), because it has advantages over chkdsk, and can be used when files are online, it's also faster as well.

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/hh848060%28v=vs.85%29.aspx
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Author Comment

by:horatio_too
ID: 39256255
Dear hanccocka

Many thanks for your extremely swift response.

Please accept my apologies for the delay in responding, but we have had a series of major power outages over the last 24 hours and the electrician has only just left site, so finally catching up.

Your comment re 120Gb seems to give a more sensible amount of headroom than the 40Gb provided out of the box.

Can I just delete the extended partition on the RAID 1 volumes and then resize the primary partition, or do I need to scrub and reinstall (or buy a copy of Acronis) ?

Interested in your comments re ReFS - most of the feedback that I had seen was that it was too early to implement in production systems, particularly for hosting VHDs ?

Look forward to any feedback that you might have on that point and on the resizing of the RAID 1 partitions.

Kind regards


Horatio_too
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LVL 123
ID: 39256303
You should be able manipulate the partition sizes, using Disk Management, Expand Volume, or other Third Party Utilities.
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Author Closing Comment

by:horatio_too
ID: 39296560
Accepted as answer, but unlikely to implement ReFS on our servers - yet
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