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I have just learned that our PDC has a single drive with 2 partitions. I also know that this drive has bad blocks as recorded in the event log. What I would like to do is to convert this to a RAID solution with a nice balance between economy and performance.

I will admit that I have only configured servers with RAID from scratch, and have no experience upgrading an existing system into a RAID system. In fact, I'm not sure it is even possible.

Since this is the PDC for 350+ workstations downtime is important. I'd like to hear from other System Administators how they would tackle this and their recommendations for all devices.

At this time it seems to me that I can replace the existing drive and then restore from backup or install a controller, drives, configure the RAID an basically start from scratch.

Thank you for taking your time. ~AZee

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When you say PDC, do you mean that you are running Windows NT 4? – tegbains Dec 22 '10 at 1:56
All servers are Windows 2003 – AZee Dec 22 '10 at 21:05
up vote 4 down vote accepted

What all do you have on the machine? If it were me, I'd just promote one of my secondaries, and rebuild from scratch. I'm always trying to find time to upgrade mine though, so, you know, grain of salt.

Or you could cheat, and make a VM image out of the PDC, and run it off another piece of hardware while you fix the old hardware. I like doing this with a lot of things.

You could use Ghost to make an image, and then restore the image to the new raid.

It's tempting to try and add another drive, and just make Windows do the software raid thing. The problem there is that windows keeps one of the drives as the boot drive. If THAT one fails, then you have to jump through a few hoops to make the other one bootable. Not nearly as cool as a hardware raid.

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Agreed - it's easy enough to either move all critical roles over to another DC and demote the old one. There is far less risk in doing that than migrating a production server's storage system. – EEAA Dec 22 '10 at 2:36
Thanks for the input... I really didn't think there was any other solution. I'll promote my other DC and move over all DHCP (currently being split with the primary). Install the controller, drives and OS. Once it is a DC back on the domain won't everything just replicate? It just seems to me there is nothing to restore or anything else to do for that matter. The DC's have the AD, DNS and DHCP (DHCP just for this location). Am I missing anything? Thanks again! – AZee Dec 22 '10 at 15:19

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