replacing drive in raid array

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virtualgeorg

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When I replace a hot swappable mirrored drive does it make any difference what is on the new drive I am installing?

Like if I remove an existing drive and replace it, does the raid software automatically format the new drive before it rebuilds the data? So it is a new unformatted drive or a used drive that contains data, will it just rebuild no matter the state of the new drive?

thanks
 
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Just make sure its as big if not bigger than the one your mirroring. Other than that yes you can do it.

Alot of raid softwares that I have used once you break the mirror as soon as you insert the new HDD it will start to rebuild it. mind you if you take a 40 gig dirve and you put in a 70 gig drive your losing out on 30 gigs because the raid will not affect the partition size and you can only have it as big as your smallest drive.
 

virtualgeorg

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I have several drives all exactly the same. So I want to pull one out periodically and store it in a separate location. So If I rotate them occaisionally I just wanted to be sure it was ok to insert one that had previous data stored on it. Does the software automatically format the new drive so it does not matter if it is new & unformatted or if it was used previously with existing data?

Thanks
 
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It depends on the software your using but usually yes.

What I have done in the past is in a mirror situation I take drive number 2 out (this way drive one stays in use and working as it should). Then I put in a spare drive then the raid software will see that the drive has been inserted and prompt me to recreate the mirror. At this point it automatically rebuilds the mirror including anything needed to make the mirror happen.
 

JohnWill

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Rather than go to the trouble of removing one of the drives and having the RAID do all the work of rebuilding, why not just use a backup?

I use Acronis true image to backup my RAID-0 array, works like a champ. I've restored it a couple of times with no issues. I gotta' believe it'll be much faster than doing it your way.
 

virtualgeorg

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Actually all that is on this server is backups of other servers imaged with Acronis.
I just want to keep another copy in another location. So if my server burns up in a fire and I have one of my mirrored drives in a safe, I can re-create the array on a new server from that drive, right? At least thats what I was hoping.

When I first setup this server I created an image of the OS & the raid array and then wiped out everything just to test true image and it works great and is very simple to use.
 

JohnWill

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Well, I guess I still don't see why doing the backup my way doesn't solve the problem. :)
 

virtualgeorg

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I don't understand what your way is? The main thing I am trying to do it store a second backup in another location like in a safe. I could buy a couple of external HD's and then swap them out but I already had a spare server not in use with 3 hot swap scsi drives so that is why I was trying to use it as a backup server.

So what should I do differently exactly? Sorry if I am missing something basic here.

thanks!
 

JohnWill

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I just can't see the complexity of removing one of the drives and then forcing the server to rebuild the RAID array whenever you put it back in. If this were my situation, I'd leave the spare server as a spare and use a couple of external drives. I believe in the KISS principle, and I don't believe that fooling around with reconstructing the RAID array regularly is the simple way. :) Just my opinion...
 
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