Suggestions on how to migrate to new OS install

Jonathan B. Horen jbhoren at
Mon Sep 27 23:12:05 CDT 2010

Get a 2GB thumb drive and plug it into one of the USB connectors (is there
an onboard USB connector on the motherboard, or on top of the hot-plug
drives? if so, use it), install ESXi onto it, then reconfigure the BIOS to
boot from the USB drive.

We did it on a Dell R400, using the RAID-1 drives as the VMware datastore.

Use vSphere 4.1 Client to manage it; creating and managing VMs is a breeze.

On Mon, Sep 27, 2010 at 7:47 PM, Moe, Justin <Justin.Moe at> wrote:

>  Greetings!
> What I’m looking at is a PE2950 with the boot drive(s) in a RAID 1
> configuration on a PERC6.
> Right now, the machine has an old copy of Debian etch running VMServer 1.x,
> so for obvious reasons, we need to upgrade it.
> However, my concern is that if the new VM platform isn’t quite what we need
> (it’s a toss up between ESXi 4.1 and ProxMox), I don’t want to nuke our
> current install, which has proven to be solid.
> The only idea I can come up with, aside from finding a pair of SAS drives
> to ‘borrow’ for this experiment, is to:
>    1. Remove both drives from the RAID 1
>    2. Take the secondardy drive and put it in the primary slot, but leave
>    the primary drive out of the array
>    3. Do the install, and if it turns out that the new setup isn’t what we
>    needed, swap the drives back, reimport the config from the primary drive,
>    and let it rebuild the array.
>    4. Try this procedure again later during the next maintence window with
>    a different virtuilzation solution.
> On paper, this seems like it would work, but I throw myself on the mercey
> of those who have more experience with these cards or advice or suggestions
> on a safer way to do this (or something similar).
> Justin
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UAF Life Science Informatics
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(907) 474-2742
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