RAID-5 expansion / harddisk replacement (with bigger disks) w ithout total data-loss Steve_Boley at
Tue Aug 19 10:37:00 CDT 2003

Trust me, don't do what you are trying to do.  Will probably end in
miserable failure and cause more downtime than necessary.

Rem out your mount points for the current mounts on the raid

Backup the data and note any labels on the arrays if any with e2label

Remove the 9gb drives and put new drives in and create new raid5 and scrub

Recreate partitions to whatever size you want and label them if you are
them that way restore data and restore the mount points.

Remount partitions and restart all your applications.

If you go down doing any of these rebuilds and reconfigures you loose
everything and have to start fresh anyways and will have wasted several
hours for each rebuild and even more time during reconfigures.

You would expend 100 times more effort trying not to recreate and restore
you would if you just followed the above steps.

-----Original Message-----
From: Nicolai Schleifer [mailto:schleifer at]
Sent: Tuesday, August 19, 2003 5:49 AM
To: linux-poweredge at
Subject: RAID-5 expansion / harddisk replacement (with bigger disks)
without total data-loss


I'd like to replace the four 9GB harddisks of container 1 in the example
below against 36GB harddisks without having a total data loss of that
container. The goal is to extend the overall size of that container from "(4
time 9GB)-raid-5_overhead" to "(4 times 36GB)-raid-5_overhead".

I think it should be possible, by first replacing all the 9GB harddisks,
one by one (like if they were broken and needed to be replaced) and after
that by extending the container's size to the full extent that should be
possible by then (found hints about that, using afacli commands "container
reconfigure"/"container extend").

I'm currently reading this mailinglist about my planned expansion task,
to various different results. I can't find an example on the list which
matches my task. Any hints?

Example Configuration:
AFA0> container list
Executing: container list
Num          Total  Oth Chunk          Scsi   Partition
Label Type   Size   Ctr Size   Usage   B:ID:L Offset:Size
----- ------ ------ --- ------ ------- ------ -------------
 0    Mirror 8.47GB            Open    0:00:0 64.0KB:8.47GB 
 /dev/sda             SYSTEM           0:01:0 64.0KB:8.47GB 

 1    RAID-5 25.4GB       64KB Open    0:02:0 64.0KB:8.47GB 
 /dev/sdb             DATA             0:03:0 64.0KB:8.47GB 
                                       0:04:0 64.0KB:8.47GB 
                                       0:05:0 64.0KB:8.47GB 

Maybe someone can tell me if it's possible at all. A recipe on how to do it
would even be greater.

Thank you! :)

Greetings Nicolai
Nicolai Schleifer
Chamaeleon Aktiengesellschaft
fur innovative Netzlosungen
Robert-Bosch-Str. 12 / Haus IV
D-56410 Montabaur
Hotline:  +49 26 02 - 10 16 9 - 160
Zentrale: +49 26 02 - 10 16 9 - 0
Fax:      +49 26 02 - 10 16 9 - 101
Funk:     +49 177 - 32 08 60 7
Email: schleifer at

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