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I currently have an HP DL360-G7 server with a P411 SAS controller connected to an HP Storageworks D2600 storage array. The server boots VmWare ESXi 4.1 from its own drives (not from drives in the D2600). The storage array holds a number of VmWare datastores.

In the event of a server failure, would the array run 'as is' using a P411 card in a non-HP server, or is HP server hardware/firmware needed to make the system work as a whole? I am looking at the options for business continuity and the possibility of shutting down the array, moving it to another server and just firing it all up again.

I could buy another compatible HP server but we have a few non-HP units in-house that could be used if the setup's going to work so any insight would be appreciated before I arrange to try it out.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Yes, you can use a Smart Array controller in another server, provided the slot type is similar and the card fits, etc. It's not ideal, but it does work. I believe you'll still get the prompt for the BIOS configuration utility (ORCA). Since the RAID configs live on the drives, you should be able to move the P411 card and the storage array to a different server.

I'd still recommend doing this with an HP server (even a lower-end Proliant 100-series), or going down the road of proper shared storage to mitigate the impact of a single server failure.

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Thanks - appreciated. Yes, I am looking at the 180 range at the moment. –  Linker3000 Jun 28 '11 at 12:27
    
+1 100% Agree. Additionally since the config is on the drive you don't need the original P411, and most of the newer SmartArray cards will read the drives just fine. –  Chris S Jun 28 '11 at 12:45

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