Solved

Best Practice for Windows Server 2008r2 software Raid-1

Posted on 2014-01-25
6
1,949 Views
Last Modified: 2014-02-07
Hello, I have searched to determine the best maintenance practice for a software raid on Windows Server 2008r2.   I run chkdsk.  Are there other maintenance actions I should run from time to time?
0
Comment
Question by:tucktech
[X]
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
6 Comments
 
LVL 81

Accepted Solution

by:
David Johnson, CD, MVP earned 100 total points
ID: 39809714
monitoring your event logs for disk errors is paramount
0
 
LVL 17

Assisted Solution

by:bigeven2002
bigeven2002 earned 100 total points
ID: 39809719
Hello,

Do you know if you are using the Intel Software Raid or the LSI software Raid?  Either way, during POST bootup on the server, watch the screen and it will give an option to go into the Raid configuration Utility, LSI is Ctrl+M I believe, not sure what Intel's is but it will say on the screen before it starts to boot Windows, you'll have about 5 seconds to activate the utility.

In the utility, there should be an option to check the consistency of the Raid.  This would be the only other maintenance task I am aware of aside from rebuilding.
0
 
LVL 2

Assisted Solution

by:CubeOver
CubeOver earned 87 total points
ID: 39809754
Software RAID on Windows Server should not be used for system volume, only for data volumes.
This is because Windows boot loader will be looking for a specific drive ID to boot from, and if that disk fails then it will not be booting off the other disk. This will require maintenance and will cause downtime.
Hardware RAID for system volume is a preferred solution since it will not cause downtime neither require intervention to get system back into redundant mode.
If you have many servers with software RAIDs you may be looking to consolidate all event logs onto one machine for easier monitoring.
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc748890.aspx
0
Independent Software Vendors: We Want Your Opinion

We value your feedback.

Take our survey and automatically be enter to win anyone of the following:
Yeti Cooler, Amazon eGift Card, and Movie eGift Card!

 
LVL 88

Assisted Solution

by:rindi
rindi earned 63 total points
ID: 39809885
Using Windows built-in software RAID for your system Volume is absolutely no problem at all, and it is always better than using the fake-RAID controllers you will find in most desktop mainboards. As mentioned earlier, you should check the health of the disks via your eventlogs. You can also periodically boot the server to the HD's manufacturer's diagnostic utility to check their states. Those utilities are included on the UBCD, but you can also get them directly from the manufacturer:

http://ultimatebootcd.com

Also remember that no RAID, whether hardware or software RAID, is fool proof, and it is definitely no substitute for a good backup strategy. So good backups are always essential.
0
 
LVL 2

Assisted Solution

by:CubeOver
CubeOver earned 87 total points
ID: 39810056
I have several old servers at work that I have to use for now. They only have two hard drives and no hardware RAID.
I chose not to use software RAID for aforementioned reasons - system continues to run only if the secondary disk fails. If the disk of the primary "plex" fails, software RAID on system volume offers [almost] no protection. Yes the data on the secondary plex is still there, but not bootloader nor its config. You would still require to replace the failed disk and perform system recovery.
This is why I do not use RAID1 on system volume, instead I dedicate whole secondary disk as a backup disk for whole server. It is not even visible to Explorer, but should my primary disk fail, ANYWAY I will have to replace the disk and recover from backup. I would put in the new primary disk, boot off Windows Server CD, choose Recover from a System Image, and it would see the images on the secondary disk that is dedicated for Windows Server Backup.
Hence, over an incomplete RAID solution, I chose a very fast local backup that ensures quick and full recovery using Windows built-in tools, for free. Plus, unlike RAIDs, it also insures  my system against admin error (i.e. installed something that is not desirable, e.g. some patches that do not support removals). Needless to say, I can afford to lose 1d worth of data which may not be within your protection objectives.
0
 

Author Closing Comment

by:tucktech
ID: 39842697
thanks for the comments
0

Featured Post

[Webinar] Code, Load, and Grow

Managing multiple websites, servers, applications, and security on a daily basis? Join us for a webinar on May 25th to learn how to simplify administration and management of virtual hosts for IT admins, create a secure environment, and deploy code more effectively and frequently.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

Suggested Solutions

The business world is becoming increasingly integrated with tech. It’s not just for a select few anymore — but what about if you have a small business? It may be easier than you think to integrate technology into your small business, and it’s likely…
Many businesses neglect disaster recovery and treat it as an after-thought. I can tell you first hand that data will be lost, hard drives die, servers will be hacked, and careless (or malicious) employees can ruin your data.
This tutorial will walk an individual through configuring a drive on a Windows Server 2008 to perform shadow copies in order to quickly recover deleted files and folders. Click on Start and then select Computer to view the available drives on the se…
This tutorial will show how to configure a new Backup Exec 2012 server and move an existing database to that server with the use of the BEUtility. Install Backup Exec 2012 on the new server and apply all of the latest hotfixes and service packs. The…

734 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question