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IBM x3650 M2 add mirror to existing array no downtime

Posted on 2013-06-20
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Hi,
I work on a server team and have recently acquired RightFax as our enterprise fax manager. It has been suggested we add another hard drive to the two clustered nodes, and place only the swap file on these drives. NO configuration of the drives currently setup is required or needed at ALL in the existing array. The issue is, we are primarily a HP, with a handful of Dell servers shop. I know exactly how to expand an array on those from within Windows without taking the server down. A consultant setup our RightFax environment before I was on this team, and used IBM servers x3650 M2 servers. They did not install the array configuration utility (or equivilant) on the servers I'd expect to see when logging into Windows. I was hoping/wanting to put the drives into the server, then launch the ACU (HP Equivilant), and configure the drives as a separate mirror, then place the swap flies on the drives. My problem is I do not know what the software is called that I need to install and use to do this, since I have not worked on IBM servers before. I do not want to do this from the BIOS and take the servers down, since they are in constant use. Can someone please get me started and tell me what the name of the IBM software is, that I need to install, to configure the array ( a separate mirror) after adding the new disk for these IBM servers? They are just 73GB drives (two per server - mirror needed - new logical drive to show up on server). I think the software is called serveraid, but there is so much documentation out there at the IBM site, I would just prefer to download/install the ACU for IBM, and move on with this and not let it require hours of my time and research that I don't really have. Any assistance is greatly appreciated. The servers are IBM x3650 M2 servers, and they are both running Windows 2008 R2 x64. Thanks in advance! If I just know what the software is, make sure I have the correct version, and can configure the new mirrors from within Windows, then I think I can probably handle from there. I hope it is as I think it can be, by simply doing it in a similar way that you would with HP Proliants and the ACU they have.
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Question by:stoneyrok
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andyalder earned 1500 total points
ID: 39263000
IBM replaced the controller management software with the generic LSI one some tome ago, https://www-947.ibm.com/support/entry/portal/docdisplay?lndocid=MIGR-65666

Not sure if you can add a mirror on the fly though.
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by:stoneyrok
ID: 39263556
Excellent, thank you and I will give this a shot and report back. I appreciate the assistance!
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Author Comment

by:stoneyrok
ID: 39263634
I checked the server, and it has the ServeRAID-MR10i SAS/SATA Controller in it. The link you directed me to (unknowingly to you and impossible for you to know) did not include support for the MR-10i controller.  When I checked the MR-10i user guide, and looked at the installation of it ( https://www-947.ibm.com/support/entry/myportal/docdisplay?lndocid=MIGR-5074114 - I clicked the larger pdf file to open - the user guide  page 2-9 ), it looks like they are running individual SATA power and data connections from the disks directly to the card. Now I am wondering if (although this server has a drive cage) if the vendor actually ran individual cables from the card to the disks? If so, then even if I slide a disk into the cage, it may not even be recognized since it potenitally is not even plugged up or in. Wow, this card seems a little old. I would assume the entire cage was wired (backplane). So, if my thought it correct, then I am going to be required to open this case up and visualize if the vendor did wire it exactly like the instructions show. And, if so, then I am going to have to do the same for these disks. Does that make sense to you?
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by:andyalder
ID: 39263860
I wouldn't go by the spec of an individual hardwired cable being available to mean there is one, the M3 version of that server has a useless cable that lets you move the cache battery from onboard to detached, I threw it away last ones I built. Indeed the server and card are a little old.

Thought it was BR10il in that machine but admittedly a bit of guesswork there.
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Author Comment

by:stoneyrok
ID: 39263908
This card supports four drives as it is now, three are in there, mirror w/spare. only room for one drive unless more cabling is purchased. Is probably NOT best practices for this server and the app we are running. This project is goign on hold until a consultant reviews it, and we discuss best practices, so thanks for the answer! I certainly appreciate it. You got me going at least on this.
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