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Vail Drive-Extender change: is a drive migration possible?


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I don't really care if I have to re-image the c: [sys] drive, since all on there are the add-ins and some settings, but I can't just 'backup' 4TB of data, if there is no way to migrate from v1 drive extender model to Vail's drive extender implementation. Also it would not be too hard to save the main WHS settings off, and install Vail and then restore them (from a M$ point of view that is, in my opinion [as a software engineer myself...]).

Does anyone know if the drive pool can be migrated from v1 to Vail?

- Urs

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There was a useful thread on MS forums detailing a procedure. Having done my own migration previously, it sounds bulletproof to me, although it is still a lot of work. The author has done his best to simplify the process with minimum number of reboots and trips into the case.

Check it out

It might be hard to find so I am going to paste it here.


Great, so doing an in-place migration on existing hardware should present no problems via the following process:

1. Remove the largest existing drive from your drive pool or buy a new drive that is equal to or larger than the largest existing drive in your drive pool.

2. If the drive you added/demigrated if not larger than the largest remaining drive(s) in your server, perform a storage balance across your remaining drives using Drive Balancer - this should ensure that the used space on any of the drives is less than the drive you freed up in step 1, talking into account the new system partition. If that is not the case (e.g., your server is nearly completely full), you will need to add a drive to your server so that you can copy your data over without running out of space.

3. Power your server off and physically DISCONNECT/UNPLUG all the drives from your server except the one you added/demigrated in step 1.

4. Install WHS v2 on your server. This will wipe out all drives connected to the server, so make sure that the only drive visible is the empty one from step 1.

5. Re-create all of your share points from the old server.

6. Power the server down, and re-connect the other hard drives. These will appear as standard hard drives to the OS once it boots back up.

7. On each of those drives, you will find a hidden folder named "DE", and in that is a folder called "Shares". This contains the part of the drive pool shares from v1 that that drive held. Copy the contents of this folder to the new storage pool folders, starting with your largest drive. As you empty the folder on a given drive, add the drive to the new storage pool so you have room to copy more drives over. Note that if you were using duplication, you will eventually start getting "file exists - overwrite?" warnings; you can either allow or skip these - the files are the identical copies made by the duplication service on the old server, so it will save time to just skip them.

8. Once all of your drives are emptied and added to the new pool, your migration is complete.

Note that this is a *migration*, NOT an *upgrade*. If you were running applications on the old server, you will need to re-install them on the new one, and if they stored data outside the storage pool, any data files they may have created will be lost. If your application has a documented backup process, use it before you migrate, and store your backups in your storage pool so you can recover it once you are moved over.

Lastly, use this method at your own risk; while it will work for most people, I take no responsibility of you lose data or damage your hardware using it. If you aren't clear about what you are doing here, build a new server and copy across the network like MS suggests - you never lose data when copying it.


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So this method is a logical migration of data from V1 to V2 since the drives were still NTFS drives in WHS V1.

Some points to consider for anyone contemplating this with WHS Vail Beta:
1. WHS Vail is public Beta right now and the method above is a one way street. If you don't physically have a backup of your data then you are at risk of losing everything.
2. Completely trusting that WHS V1 or V2 is going to protect you from losing your data without another method of backup is very risky. If the 4 TB of data (or whatever the size) is made up of 1TB of valuable data and the rest is stuff that could be reproduced but will take time, at least backup the 1TB to an external USB drive.
3. Did I mention that Vail is beta?
4. If the 4Tb of data is very valuable, it might be worth considering buying (or building) a new WHS when Vail is finally released.

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I agree with cskenny, I would not do this at this time as it is simply to risky with an early beta.

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