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DiscipleDOC
04-18-08, 12:35 PM
I got a new toy today...it was a new storage server from Dell! It's a PowerEdge NF500 with over 1.5 tB of storage space. I'm about to dismantle it and reconfigure the partitions, because Dell (for some unknown reason) decided to make it all one large partition.

So far, I've repart it to have a 93gb os partition, and now the fun begins.

Give me some suggestions of what I should do with the other partitions (and no, I will not put pr0n on my server, Crainger!)

Revs
04-18-08, 12:43 PM
How many physical drives does it have and how big?

DiscipleDOC
04-18-08, 12:51 PM
Four physical drives and they are 500gb each...

Revs
04-18-08, 12:56 PM
You thinking about RAIDing em up at all. What are you gonna be storing on there, anything specific or just general stuff?

If possible, I would RAID1 two of em for important stuff.

DiscipleDOC
04-18-08, 12:57 PM
You thinking about RAIDing em up at all. What are you gonna be storing on there, anything specific or just general stuff?
It's RAID 5...and I am going to be storing files and backups on this server.

Revs
04-18-08, 01:06 PM
Hmm. I don't know enough about how RAID5 works to know what is possible, partition wise. Can you just partition it as if it were one drive?

DiscipleDOC
04-18-08, 01:20 PM
Hmm. I don't know enough about how RAID5 works to know what is possible, partition wise. Can you just partition it as if it were one drive?
That's how it came...and I did not like it. Having everything on one drive is a nightmare if something was to happen to the os.

I would rather have at least 2 partitions.

Revs
04-18-08, 02:43 PM
That's how it came...and I did not like it. Having everything on one drive is a nightmare if something was to happen to the os.

I would rather have at least 2 partitions.

When I said 'one drive', I meant one physical drive, not one partition :D

Have you tried to partition it in Disk Management? If so what happens?

DiscipleDOC
04-18-08, 02:47 PM
When I said 'one drive', I meant one physical drive, not one partition :D

Have you tried to partition it in Disk Management? If so what happens?
Disk Management won't allow you to re-partition the drives...I have to go into the card's bios and re-partition the drives.

Revs
04-18-08, 02:53 PM
Disk Management won't allow you to re-partition the drives...I have to go into the card's bios and re-partition the drives.

In that case i'm as lost as you, Doc. What's this 'card' you speak of. Is it what controls the drives? Do you connect to this through LAN?

Revs
04-18-08, 03:20 PM
I assume you meant it's a PowerVault?! That's the only NF500 model I could see.

If so this might help..

http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/stor-sys/pv100/en/admin_en/admin.pdf

Page 31 onwards is about volume configs.

crainger
04-20-08, 11:01 PM
Disk Management won't allow you to re-partition the drives...I have to go into the card's bios and re-partition the drives.

Here is what you do. Setup RAID 5 in the cards bios. Don't partition anything or format anything in there. Install the OS, use it to configure the OS partition only. XP, Server setup all let you do that, just set it to 93 GB or whatever. NOW when the OS is installed use Disk Management to create the extra Partitions. The OS will probably only see one big drive with unallocated space.

OR

Break the array, install the OS to a partition on ONE of the drives. Once in the OS use it to create the RAID array across the drives. This way is less hassle, BUT I don't know if Windows supports RAID 5 in it's software (It does RAID 1 fine). Using Windows to run the RAID is also slower than going through the dedicated RAID card.

Bman212121
04-21-08, 02:13 PM
I don't think he was asking how to do it, he just wanted suggestions on what other partitions to make.

Personally I still like the 1 giant partition idea. Making one partition for the OS and then one other for the rest is okay, but it becomes a PITA really quickly because everytime you install something you have to change the driver letter of it, and if you start putting things on your desktop you can fill that OS partition really quickly. You are correct though it is easier to reformat the OS should it take a dump and not have to worry about losing your data.

Another thing to consider is this, if you want to do shares then you need to make another share for every partition, aka music, video, games, etc. If you ever need to move stuff around anytime you move a file on the same partition it is a move so it just updates the drive table accordingly. If you partition the heck of it then when you move a file from one partition to another it is a copy, then delete. This takes 1000x longer anytime you want to move files around. Then once you fill up your partitions you'll have to spend a lot more time resizing them.

DiscipleDOC
04-21-08, 02:42 PM
I don't think he was asking how to do it, he just wanted suggestions on what other partitions to make.
Thanks for explaining it in a way I could not. :thumbsup:

Personally I still like the 1 giant partition idea. Making one partition for the OS and then one other for the rest is okay, but it becomes a PITA really quickly because everytime you install something you have to change the driver letter of it, and if you start putting things on your desktop you can fill that OS partition really quickly. You are correct though it is easier to reformat the OS should it take a dump and not have to worry about losing your data.
True...but I have over a 1.5 Tb of space, and if I have some corruption with my os, I don't want to have to reinstall that and destroy the info that I'm using as backup.

I've decided to do three (3) partitions:

OS
Applications
Storage and backups

This way, I can have the best performance out of this server.

Another thing to consider is this, if you want to do shares then you need to make another share for every partition, aka music, video, games, etc. If you ever need to move stuff around anytime you move a file on the same partition it is a move so it just updates the drive table accordingly. If you partition the heck of it then when you move a file from one partition to another it is a copy, then delete. This takes 1000x longer anytime you want to move files around. Then once you fill up your partitions you'll have to spend a lot more time resizing them.
If I do it the way I'm planning on doing it, I will be able to share out the last partition. ;)

Thanks for the suggestion guys. I am still open for more plans if you see a problem with the one I'm going with...

einstein_314
04-21-08, 03:32 PM
Personally I would just do 2. OS/Applications and Storage/Backups. Putting your applications on a separate partition won't improve performance (since it's all the same array anyways). If they were on a totally different hard drive then maybe there would be minor improvements. And if you lose the OS partition (crash or corruption) you'll still have to reinstall all the programs. Well...unless you figure out how to backup all the registry entries each program installs and then just restore them....I've heard of it working for games. But I think it would be way too much of a hassle to do it for every program.

So yeah, 2 partitions gets my vote. Oh and I'm curious....why 93GB for OS? Why not...100GB? Or 95GB?

DiscipleDOC
04-21-08, 03:47 PM
Personally I would just do 2. OS/Applications and Storage/Backups. Putting your applications on a separate partition won't improve performance (since it's all the same array anyways). If they were on a totally different hard drive then maybe there would be minor improvements. And if you lose the OS partition (crash or corruption) you'll still have to reinstall all the programs. Well...unless you figure out how to backup all the registry entries each program installs and then just restore them....I've heard of it working for games. But I think it would be way too much of a hassle to do it for every program.

So yeah, 2 partitions gets my vote. Oh and I'm curious....why 93GB for OS? Why not...100GB? Or 95GB?
I really don't know...93 just sounded like a good number for me. :p

crainger
04-21-08, 06:02 PM
I don't think he was asking how to do it, he just wanted suggestions on what other partitions to make.

OHHHH!

::o:

DiscipleDOC
04-23-08, 11:01 AM
I just got approved to get another server just like that. I'm going to use the newer server for disk-to-disk backups as well as media backups. ;)