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I'm looking for a fast to migrate Linux installation to another hardware.

As I wrote in another question (, I moved 2 disks in software RAID to another hardware, and now it doesn't boot-up because the server has a SATA hardware controller not included in the initrd image. I spent a whole day trying to solve this (with the very dear mkinitrd), but still to no avail. It all probably gets complicated because I have a software raid running and the OS on top of it, and somewhere along the line it just doesn't work.

Anyway, I'm want now just to set-up a new mirrored raid, and move all the data from the old drives as fast as possible, with as least configuration as possible.

Is there a good way to do it? I heard DD should do the trick, but will it work later with the controller, or it just would overwrite all the disks and I will be back at the start?

Huge thanks in advance!

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Forget about "fast". The right metric is "easy". – dmckee Feb 8 '10 at 21:30
up vote 1 down vote accepted

You're best bet would be to rsync the data over. I would bring up the server, and set it to an initial "priming" rsync while the original server is still up and running. Then you can take a much smaller outage window to rsync the changed and locked files over to the new server when you are ready to put it into production.

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When doing this, you have to avoid /proc /sys /dev, but you need the files 'under' /dev to bootstrap linux. The trick i usually do is: mkdir /o mount -o bind / /o and then you can rsync -avz /o/ destination:/ – Jason Feb 9 '10 at 0:35

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