HDD Upgrade Help

fabriciom

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Feb 17, 2008
362
98
Madrid, España
Hello, so I currently have as my main drive a Raptor 74GB which is just out of space. I have moved directories to other drives and added links from the drive to there but I'm just all out of space. So I got my self a second drive (another 74GB Raptor) I want to use a RAID0 setup (or Raid 1 not sure, the one that turns both drives into a single big drive). Any ways my question is: is it possible to do this with out losing everything I currently have on the drive? Can I back this stuff up to another drive, do the raid thing, format and just restore? If so can someone point out the steps?

-Thanks
 

nanofrog

macrumors G4
May 6, 2008
11,719
2
Any ways my question is: is it possible to do this with out losing everything I currently have on the drive?
No, as the initialization proceedure (the actual creation of the RAID set) wipes out any existing information.

Can I back this stuff up to another drive, do the raid thing, format and just restore?
Yes.

  1. Either clone or backup the current OS disk.
  2. Install the second disk
  3. Create the RAID set
  4. Restore the OS from the clone, or OS Install disks (then restore the data off of the backup; a bit more work, but could also get rid of unwanted files). You'll have to figure out which way you want to go

BTW, if you've a Windows or Linux installation, it won't work anymore, as Disk Utility modifys the firmware (renders the ability to boot Windows/Linux no longer possible). You can get a cheap SATA card (i.e. SIL3132 based) rather cheap, and use that for a separate Windows/Linux disk (example; this one is nice, as you can configure the ports - only 2 port card, so you can go 2x internal, 2x external, or 1 + 1 via the jumpers).

Hope this helps. :)
 

fabriciom

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Feb 17, 2008
362
98
Madrid, España
Any ways my question is: is it possible to do this with out losing everything I currently have on the drive?
No, as the initialization proceedure (the actual creation of the RAID set) wipes out any existing information.


Yes.

  1. Either clone or backup the current OS disk.
  2. Install the second disk
  3. Create the RAID set
  4. Restore the OS from the clone, or OS Install disks (then restore the data off of the backup; a bit more work, but could also get rid of unwanted files). You'll have to figure out which way you want to go

BTW, if you've a Windows or Linux installation, it won't work anymore, as Disk Utility modifys the firmware (renders the ability to boot Windows/Linux no longer possible). You can get a cheap SATA card (i.e. SIL3132 based) rather cheap, and use that for a separate Windows/Linux disk (example; this one is nice, as you can configure the ports - only 2 port card, so you can go 2x internal, 2x external, or 1 + 1 via the jumpers).

Hope this helps. :)
Backup and restore using timemachie? Wont it force me to restore to a drive of the same size or partition of the original size?

-Thanks
 

nanofrog

macrumors G4
May 6, 2008
11,719
2
Backup and restore using timemachie? Wont it force me to restore to a drive of the same size or partition of the original size?

-Thanks
Are you planning to use a backup or clone to restore the data from?

I ask, as you should be able to transfer files to the new array from the backup without it forcing a partition size (even if you have to do it manually). With a clone utility, you can choose not to follow the drive (source) the clone is on, and use the max volume capacity (CCC, or SuperDuper).

Please understand, I do most of my stuff from Acronis under Windows - handles both clones and backups - (my primary applications don't all have versions for OS X, so I keep it all native to Windows).
 

spiritlevel

macrumors 6502
Nov 5, 2007
373
58
BTW, if you've a Windows or Linux installation, it won't work anymore, as Disk Utility modifys the firmware (renders the ability to boot Windows/Linux no longer possible). You can get a cheap SATA card (i.e. SIL3132 based) rather cheap, and use that for a separate Windows/Linux disk (example; this one is nice, as you can configure the ports - only 2 port card, so you can go 2x internal, 2x external, or 1 + 1 via the jumpers).

Hope this helps. :)
Thanks nanofrog - I was under the impression that setting up a raid merely stopped installation of windows - but would not render an existing windows installation unbootable...are you 100% about that?

I have read some of your very informative posts on the issue, but I have also read some things which seem to directly conflict with them (please see https://forums.macrumors.com/archive/index.php/t-690256.html) and as I want to do this myself (raid & windows) it would be great to get some definitive answers to a few questions...

My setup is mac pro 2008. I would not be trying to run windows off the raid...

1. Is it possible to boot windows from an odd SATA Port? (I know you can't install windows onto an odd sata port drive, but the post I linked to above suggests that if you install it elsewhere, you can then move it to odd sata and boot)

2. Does creating a Raid actually change the firmware forever? IE, once you have created a Raid, can you never install/boot windows using the mac SATA or is this "firmware" only present when the raid is present ) ie if you remove the raid disks does the windows stopping firmware stay or go? Again, the post I linked above suggests that removing the raid disks allows Windows to be installed

3. Do you definitely need a separate SATA card to boot windows if you have a raid installed? Again, the post I linked to suggests you can boot windows with a raid installed (albeit in this example, he says he is booting windows from the odd SATA while the raid is on the 4 main bays.

4. If the separate SATA card is required, can that SATA card you linked to be used to for a mac HFS+ partition as well (currently I have my windows as a partition on a disk with a mac partition on it too, but the mac partition is not my OSX, it is just file storage)

thanks for your help, and sorry to the OP for hijacking the thread, but perhaps he will find your answers useful too...
 

fabriciom

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Feb 17, 2008
362
98
Madrid, España
Are you planning to use a backup or clone to restore the data from?

I ask, as you should be able to transfer files to the new array from the backup without it forcing a partition size (even if you have to do it manually). With a clone utility, you can choose not to follow the drive (source) the clone is on, and use the max volume capacity (CCC, or SuperDuper).

Please understand, I do most of my stuff from Acronis under Windows - handles both clones and backups - (my primary applications don't all have versions for OS X, so I keep it all native to Windows).
I have a windows partition in another drive and use an EFI boot tool (rEFIt) that picks up all the different partitions and gives me a boot menu, so I'm not worried about that. What I don't have clear is the process of backup then restore once the raid is created...
 

Argon21

macrumors member
Jun 25, 2010
94
0
Алейск, RUSSIA
I want to use a RAID0 setup (or Raid 1 not sure, the one that turns both drives into a single big drive).
You're joking right? Please do not use RAID. You are not technically savvy enough to use it, you'll probably end up losing your data.

Both RAID0 and RAID1 "turns both drives into a single big drive".

RAID0 = Striping. With 2 drives will give you double the capacity and double the performance of a single drive. But it also doubles your chances of losing your data due to drive failure. Backup your data OFTEN if you do use RAID0.

RAID1 = Mirroring. With 2 drives gives you the same capacity and same performance of a single drive. But it halves your changes of losing your data due to drive failure.
 

nanofrog

macrumors G4
May 6, 2008
11,719
2
Thanks nanofrog - I was under the impression that setting up a raid merely stopped installation of windows - but would not render an existing windows installation unbootable...are you 100% about that?

I have read some of your very informative posts on the issue, but I have also read some things which seem to directly conflict with them (please see https://forums.macrumors.com/archive/index.php/t-690256.html) and as I want to do this myself (raid & windows) it would be great to get some definitive answers to a few questions...
If you start with a "blank" system (add in the drives for RAID physically, load the OS disks to create the array, then install the OS), and then install a separate disk for Windows/Linux, Yes.

If you notice, the methodology in the linked thread is different. The OEM drive was BC'd with a both OS X and Windows. Then the array was created,.... Now consider it's the only post like that I've seen, as well as the end result of having 2x OS X installations. BTW, there's no system information given (actual model of MP, as others can actually boot Windows off of the ODD_SATA ports; just not the 2008 systems).

I don't consider having to perform a second OS installation to make it work acceptable. Not over the wasted capacity (HDD's can be had relatively cheap), but in terms of time (not just to do it the first time, but what may be needed later to fix problems/keep things running) and unknown stability (both are intertwined, as instability = much more time needed to get it running again).

So for a simple and fully functional answer, using a separate disk for Windows via it's own controller card is the best way to go about it. It's easy, won't require substantial amounts of time if there's a problem with Windows (beyond what would normally be required for the particular issue), and isn't that expensive. It operates the same no matter the order you go about it (start with OS X array, or do the card + disk for Windows first, then OS X array).

No hacks involved means safer (stability), and if one OS goes down for whatever reason, you've an other OS that's functional (allows you to boot into it for diagnostics or internet access to find a solution; particularly useful for those that don't have a second system on hand to use for such purposes).

So when I see such questions, I keep it simple.
1. Is it possible to boot windows from an odd SATA Port? (I know you can't install windows onto an odd sata port drive, but the post I linked to above suggests that if you install it elsewhere, you can then move it to odd sata and boot)
Unfortunately, not on a 2008 system (others indicate it does work on '06, '07, and '09systems, and it should be the case on the '10's as well).

I worked with someone over the phone with that methodology on a 2008 system, and it didn't work (I use hardware RAID controllers, and it wasn't an issue). :( One of the downsides of getting the first EFI64 MP produced I guess. :rolleyes:

2. Does creating a Raid actually change the firmware forever?
No, it's not permanent. Disk Utility will change the firmware setting if you delete the array (not talking about data, but the set - end result = individual disks again).

3. Do you definitely need a separate SATA card to boot windows if you have a raid installed? Again, the post I linked to suggests you can boot windows with a raid installed (albeit in this example, he says he is booting windows from the odd SATA while the raid is on the 4 main bays.
See above info. ;)

4. If the separate SATA card is required, can that SATA card you linked to be used to for a mac HFS+ partition as well (currently I have my windows as a partition on a disk with a mac partition on it too, but the mac partition is not my OSX, it is just file storage)
Yes.

Silicon Image, and other vendors that sell cards using that chip have OS X drivers. But some have had difficulties with what drivers will/won't work (unknown card source), and had to experiment to find ones that would. There may have been an occasion or two that they may not have been able to find drivers that worked for them as well (not sure here, as they may have given up before trying all available driver sources).

I have a windows partition in another drive and use an EFI boot tool (rEFIt) that picks up all the different partitions and gives me a boot menu, so I'm not worried about that. What I don't have clear is the process of backup then restore once the raid is created...
Then experiment around with a spare disk before creating the array (i.e. larger drive), or do it manually (find your files, and store on a separate disk, USB stick, ....).

I don't use TimeMachine myself, as I don't use OS X (use Win7-64 & Acronis for backup and cloning - it works well for me, and I need to be in Windows to get stuff done). But I recall others stating TM can be used without it creating partitions on the destination.
 

fabriciom

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Feb 17, 2008
362
98
Madrid, España
You're joking right? Please do not use RAID. You are not technically savvy enough to use it, you'll probably end up losing your data.

Both RAID0 and RAID1 "turns both drives into a single big drive".

RAID0 = Striping. With 2 drives will give you double the capacity and double the performance of a single drive. But it also doubles your chances of losing your data due to drive failure. Backup your data OFTEN if you do use RAID0.

RAID1 = Mirroring. With 2 drives gives you the same capacity and same performance of a single drive. But it halves your changes of losing your data due to drive failure.
LOL! Yes since I don't remember the definition of RAID0 or 1 I must be a moron. Funny ****!
Just to let you know I make my living as programmer-analyst. Music production is just a hobby..
 
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