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we are running a HP DL370 server with 6 x 300 gb disks on RAID 5. Due to a Windows update causing our server to fail recently, we couldn't access the data. I now want to separate the data from the OS (Windows server 2008 r2) so that if anything like that happens again, we can route everyone through a separate server. I have seen these HP storageworks enclosures (msa70) and have a couple of questions:

  1. Can I just take out our 2.5 inch 10k SAS drives, install them in the new Storageworks NAS and hey presto we would be up and running?

  2. If I wanted to then add another drive (I think there are 25 bays), can I just insert a blank but identical drive and the RAID 5 would dynamically expand to incorporate the new drive.

Many thanks


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  1. The MSA60 (LFF) and MSA70 (SFF) will take standard server drives. If they were covered by a warranty in the server they came from they will also be covered by the MSA unit's warranty.

    Standard LFF and SFF drives do not work in the MSA2000 units however. The MSA60/70 units are just shelves, they are not SAN or NAS devices, they uplink to another device only. They can be uplinked to servers or SAN/NAS devices, but they only connect to one device (usually).

    Note: The MSA2000 series are SAN units, you can use different drive racks in the front and various controllers in the rear to enable different types of connectivity (to other hosts). There are also Lefthand and EVA units (and HP just bought 3Par), so there's many options, but these are expensive.

    Note: moving drives from one place to another you will usually lose the data on them. At the bare minimum you should expect this to happen (and be pleasantly surprised if the data comes along).

  2. Most RAID5 setups can not expand by adding more drives. You didn't mention what technology you're using to create the RAID5 - Assuming your using a SmartArray controller or Windows Dynamic Disks, then no you can't expand those like that.

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