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PowerEdge 2900 Upgrade Hard Drive

PowerEdge 2900 Upgrade Hard Drive

PowerEdge 2900 Upgrade Hard Drive

Hello World;

At the business we looking to upgrade hard drives for DELL PowerEdge2900, currently having 8 hard drives @250Gb each (used only 7) under RAID5 (one hard drive not configured)

Client wants to upgrade Hard Drives to 2Tb each for the 7 drive without killing RAID5, and without an outage in the business.

Can you advice about the best scenario for such task.


RE: PowerEdge 2900 Upgrade Hard Drive

http://www.dell.com/downloads/global/products/pedge/en/PE2900_SS_072007.pdf Look at the maximum storage and max size hdd. Unless something has changed, 750GB hdd are the max for this box. The only way to do the type of upgrade you are talking about, is to swap out the drives 1 at a time, letting a rebuild take place after each drive is replaced. that's the easy part. The next step is you have to expand the array to use the new size drives, Dell may have tools to do this, or may need a 3rd party tool to make it happen.

RE: PowerEdge 2900 Upgrade Hard Drive

"Client wants to upgrade Hard Drives to 2Tb" ,  what your client wants and what is practical/safe is another.

1)So your system is on the raid 5, either you have a separate system partition and data partition, or you have both on one partition, this is dangerous either way. Your system partition should be on it's own disk(s) as on a raid 1.
With large SATA drives you need at least raid 6 for some safety vs a raid 5, with a hotspare; that is more than double the drives, so that will not fit in the 2900. No less the initialization and rebuild times would be a killer for SATA
raid 5, goes for raid 6 also.

2) GPT drives would be involved here for 2TB drives, refer to the Dell link

Some info in this link is pertinent to you..


Then google    SATA bit error rate raid 5     then google   SAS bit error rate

Proceed at your own risk.

Chernobyl disaster..a must see pictorial

RE: PowerEdge 2900 Upgrade Hard Drive

Hi naderiznait,

I know it's a month late, but sometime "better late than never."

What Technome says is right, but since your customer doesn't seem to have an issue running SATA/RAID5 I don't see a real issue (outside of the best-practice outlined by TN above) with upgrading to 2TB drives in a 2900. We've done it to literally dozens of 2900's with both PERC5 and PERC6 controllers. Naturally, PERC6 is the superior alternative due to RAID-6 support, but they've been rolling the dice a bit already with their current configuration.

However, there is no truly practical way to perform an online upgrade of this magnitude to get the desired benefit, unless they're willing to chop up the space into multiple partitions. Even then, you will have to take the server offline for a night to do it right. Ideally, if you have a stand-by 2900 that you could pre-configure with the 2TB drives you could do a quick swap in about only 20 minutes of downtime on the production box.

That's the way we do it.

(1) Pre-configure on similar hardware.
(2) Pull production box off-line at off-peak hour.
(3) Quick-swap drives.
(4) Reboot and be back in business.

The answer to the obvious question -- why not just swap boxes? -- is that our pre-config boxes are generally very low-end versions (i.e. a 2900 with 4GB and a single 1.6GHz DC CPU). As long as the PERC controllers match, that's the biggest criteria.

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