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I had a Dell PE 2850 die and I need to move its SCSI disks over to another PE 2850. These disks were in RAID1. I tried moving them over and just hoping the PERC would do the right thing, but it didn't auto-mount them or anything.

In the PERC 4e/Di config utility I can see the two new disks, but I'm not sure how to tell it to use them without blowing away the data on those disks. The online PERC manual doesn't mention migrating disks other than a section on "Using a Pre-loaded SCSI Drive 'As-is'", which assumes I have access to the original controller to set some logical drive numbering.

Can I safely add these two disks in RAID1 on the new machine without losing the data? I can't just put one in there - it won't allow a single, un-RAIDed disk.

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

PERCs have generally been fairly good about this for me. I don't have a PERC 4e/Di handy, but the general procedure has always been (for me):

  • Remove all disks from the recipient server and reset all controller configurations to factory default (no virtual disks defined).

  • Insert the donor disks to the recipient server. If at all possible, insert the donor disks into the same slots in the backplane as they were in the original server. Boot the recipient server to the PERC configuration BIOS.

  • Use the "View / Add Configuration" function under the "Configure" menu. This will cause the PERC to read the configuration off of the disks.

I'm not able to test this right now so take this advice w/ suitable caution and care. If you don't have a backup of the data on the drives make one now. (Being RAID-1 from a PERC you should be able to mount the disk on a non-RAID controller and read the contents. PERCs, historically, haven't used any proprietary striping format for RAID-1.)

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+1 - the PERC should be prompting to "import foreign containers" when the config utility is launched. Should be a simple process to get it running. – Shane Madden May 25 '11 at 1:21

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