Author Topic: Windows PC (RAID1) as an MD w/out killing RAID?  (Read 549 times)

Pnuts

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Windows PC (RAID1) as an MD w/out killing RAID?
« on: March 15, 2009, 01:27:58 am »
Ok, so in my Livingroom currently is a Windows XP MCE computer with 3 hard drives. 1 has the OS and recorded TV, the other 2 are configured as a RAID1 (Mirror) and holds pictures and various ripped DVD's, mostly kids movies so they dont ruin the disks and can watch them on their own.

The PC is a Dell Optiplex 755 using the onboard RAID functionality. If this was true raid, I would not be worried, however, if I run the Kubuntu 7.10 Live CD, it see's all 3 drives individually. according to this site: https://help.ubuntu.com/community/FakeRaidHowto, the reason is because it is actually a software RAID. The specific drivers allow Windows to see it as a single drive as opposed to the way Kubuntu see's it as it is.

I have an Identical PC -> Optiplex 755, except the 2 Hard drives in RAID are of a different size (2x250gb instead of 2x500gb) and it has an ATI x300 instead of an Nvidia 8600 GT, it also does not have a TV capture card in it. There is no data that I care about on this machine, so it is the perfect test subject. Once I can do it, ill backup the other PC and get it functional.

There are instructions on that page that I could follow allong with to make the changes I needed, however I am unsure how I should proceed. From reading and searching on this board and wiki, I understand once a MD is net booted, all of its configuration files are accessable on the core, correct? Would it be best to boot the test machine and shut it down, make the changes to the newly created image files and then boot it again? Would that work?

Assuming I can get the test machine correctly working, would I be able to do as described here: http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=7573.0 Which is swaping an identical MD (except MAC address) or would i run into problems because of the ATI vs Nvidia cards and different sized HD's in the different machines?

I'm pretty new to Linux in general so any help is greatly appriciated  =D

See the bottom of this page for my network layout if needed: http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/User:Pnuts

colinjones

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Re: Windows PC (RAID1) as an MD w/out killing RAID?
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2009, 02:08:47 am »
You never actually say in your post what you are trying to do! You almost say it, but not quite... what are you trying to do with this second PC? MD or core? Your subject suggests an MD, but you are talking about the hard drives in it - usually an MD would be diskless... you really ought to have the media elsewhere. If you are happy with the media on the XP machine, fine, leave it there and share it out... LMCE will discover the share and prompt you to add it to the LMCE network. Say yes, and also say yes to whether it should use the LMCE folder structure. It will then create the normal media folders on that share - now just move your media into the appropriate folders it created and let LMCE scan it into the database. Now you can play your media. There is NO reason to move the media onto a LMCE machine (MD or Core), if it is already on an XP machine and RAID'd, then leave it there and just share it out. LMCE will do the rest.

Pnuts

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Re: Windows PC (RAID1) as an MD w/out killing RAID?
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2009, 02:51:57 am »
Sorry,

The Xp-MCE machine is connected to the livingroom TV and functions as a XP-MCE PC. I want to migrate completely to LMCE, but require wife approval, etc. before she will leave the XP-MCE.

I want that machine to boot as an MD and I would like to share the media on the RAID drive, mainly the DVD's. This machine has a Haup 500 in it for the XP-MCE which I also want to make us of once it is a MD to better show my wife how to use it. Once she is sold on LMCE, i could relocate this card to the core or just leave it there.

So when it boots as an MD, I need the RAID drive to remain as is.

colinjones

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Re: Windows PC (RAID1) as an MD w/out killing RAID?
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2009, 03:53:04 am »
I see. Well the RAID as you have noted is a Windows software RAID. LMCE also allows similar RAID'ing, however they are not the same system, so your Windows RAID will not appear as a LMCE RAID (as you have seen), and if you allow LMCE to access those drives it is highly likely that it will destroy the Windows RAID. There really isn't much you can do to get around this, other than break the Windows RAID back into individual disks. Then the MD should see those disks as simple NTFS disks and allow you to access the media safely. Whilst in Windows, you could set up a periodic copy from one disk to the other as a form of backup to replace the RAID functionality, until you are ready to move permanently to LMCE. Then you can set up a LMCE software RAID and re-mirror the disks...

Personally, I would advise that you invest in separate networked storage and maintain separation between your LMCE units (core and MDs) and your media. Perhaps a NAS or even just another (non-LMCE) PC with a share, rather than keeping your media on a LMCE machine. The experience is transparent irrespective of where the media is, and keeping it separate means you can rebuild your LMCE machines with ease.