none
Server 2012 - How to backup and restore complete system with RAID adapter upgrade

    Question

  • Hello, TechNet:

    I have a working Dell PowerEdge R310 with a recent fresh install of Windows Server 2012 R2.
    The server has a PERC S300 RAID controller with four 2TB SATA disks in the front bays.

    During the fresh install, Windows couldn't find the RAID5 array's virtual disk (created using Dell's controller procedure with the 4-drive virtual disk initialized).  We then setup the RAID controller without virtual disk, and were able to install Windows on a single 2TB disk to get it running (currently using about half that space).

    The server has since had a couple of applications installed, and a second (admin) user account was created.

    I plan to replace the S300 RAID controller with an H700 RAID controller (which I'm hoping will allow the RAID5 virtual disk to be seen for re-installation of Windows 2012).  In theory, my procedure will be:

    1. Do a complete "backup once" with the S300 adapter installed.
    2. Install the H700 adapter.
    3. In H700 controller setup, delete the configuration and create the RAID5 virtual disk containing all four drives.
    4. Re-install Windows 2012 (assuming it sees the new virtual disk).
    5. Restore the backup.

    If you might offer any advice for me, I would find it most helpful.  In particular:

    • Does my procedure make sense to you?
    • Is my backup plan the right one?
    • For Restore, should I try it from within Windows or, booted to Windows DVD, from the Recovery Environment such as restoring a system image?

    Thank you, thank you,
    Best regards,
    Dan.

    Tuesday, June 26, 2018 3:19 PM

Answers

  • Hi Dan,

    Thanks for sharing ideas.

    And you could also do a few customer backup for the original server.

    If the BMR not work, maybe you could also try to restore a few data first. For configuration, you could consider to re-configure manually.

    Best Regards,

    Mary


    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help.
    If you have feedback for TechNet Subscriber Support, contact tnmff@microsoft.com.

    • Marked as answer by DanHutch Friday, July 6, 2018 3:19 AM
    Thursday, June 28, 2018 1:32 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Hi Dan,

    By default we should restore BMR to the original device or a device with same or  similar hardware. For restore BMR to a different device.  Sometimes it will cause BSOD or system not boot issue.

    Please check the KB from Microsoft about restoring windows installation or move it to different hardware.

    https://support.microsoft.com/en-sg/help/249694/how-to-restore-a-windows-installation-or-move-it-to-different-hardware

    In addition, since your configuration involves the hardware configuration, please also contact the hardware vendor for more suggestion.

    Appreciate your support and understanding.

    Best Regards,

    Mary


    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help.
    If you have feedback for TechNet Subscriber Support, contact tnmff@microsoft.com.

    Wednesday, June 27, 2018 2:00 AM
    Moderator
  • Hi, Mary:

    Thank you for your post.  I've looked at the Microsoft document you linked for me, and it's given me a few things to think about.

    Based on that information, I'm probably going to attempt at least two methods.  Once I have the full system backup, I can probably experiment.

    I should spotlight the reason for the RAID adapter change in the first place: Dell Support was no help with old hardware but, from the information I have, the old S300 RAID adapter (not supported in Windows 2012) was a likely reason that we couldn't install Windows 2012 on the RAID5 Virtual Disk configuration (Windows install didn't see it).  Hence, the upgrade to the H700 RAID adapter which, we hope, will show the Virtual Disk during re-install of Windows 2012.

    Another wrinkle (that I hope I can avoid) is if the existing partition is UEFI/GPT or MBR.  In a Dell article, I read that the partition must be GPT to allow access to larger partitions, and that should be the case if the earlier install was done with "UEFI Mode" enabled in the R310's BIOS.  If not, there were reports that an MBR backup would not restore to a GPT partition.  If the earlier install and backup was done with MBR, it looks like we may need to do a "scratch" install, and the customer will need to re-install his applications.  This won't be too bad, though, since there aren't a lot.

    However it goes, it might be a long day.

    Thanks again,
    Dan.

    Wednesday, June 27, 2018 6:08 PM
  • Hi Dan,

    Thanks for sharing ideas.

    And you could also do a few customer backup for the original server.

    If the BMR not work, maybe you could also try to restore a few data first. For configuration, you could consider to re-configure manually.

    Best Regards,

    Mary


    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help.
    If you have feedback for TechNet Subscriber Support, contact tnmff@microsoft.com.

    • Marked as answer by DanHutch Friday, July 6, 2018 3:19 AM
    Thursday, June 28, 2018 1:32 AM
    Moderator
    • Hi:
    • The work was done today successfully, but without the H700 adapter:
    • The R310 full server backup completed OK.
    • Changed BIOS settings: Boot Mode from BIOS to UEFI.
    • Removing the S300 RAID adapter and installing the H700 modular RAID adapter in the same integrated slot resulted in an error message from BIOS: Invalid adapter in integrated storage slot.
    • We moved the H700 to the Riser 1 PCIe slot, the card was recognized, but the Configuration showed "no physical disks". Removed H700.
    • Re-installed the S300 in the integrated slot.  In S300 Configuration, removed existing Virtual Disks, configured RAID5 Virtual Disk (no caching) using all available space (4x2TB) OK.
    • Fresh install Server 2012 R2 via DVD, loaded S300 driver for Server 2008, install found the new Virtual Disk and completed installation.
    • Restore via Windows Backup had limited options. Bare metal restore using the disk image threatened to restore the original partition.  I cancelled this.
    • Instead, I restored files from the Desktop/Documents/Downloads folders. The administrator will finish application installation after we (finally) got Remote Desktop working for him.
    • The main issue was to get the full RAID5 working, and it did; the C: partition was about right at 5.5TB, and it seems to be running alright.  My guess is that changing the Boot Mode to UEFI did the trick.

    Thanks,
    Dan.

    H700 Afterthoughts:
    - The H700 Modular adapter is not supported in the integrated slot on the R310 (it is on the R610).
    - The "H700 Integrated" or "H700 Adapter" is supported in a PCIe slot on the R310. Note that "H700 Integrated" is a bit of a misnomer, since it must install in a PCIe slot; it won't physically fit in the integrated slot.  I believe that the "Integrated" and "Adapter" versions are identical, except that the "Adapter" version has a (removable) slot bracket.

    - Cables are required from the adapter to the disk backplane, and these are included with an "H700 Upgrade Kit".

    • Edited by DanHutch Monday, July 9, 2018 7:15 PM
    Friday, July 6, 2018 3:12 AM