Mac Server Rebuild
Looking for some ideas...
We run a dual system, Mac and Windows and we are having the two systems integrated in the Spring Half Term. This is being done by external contractors when they come in the upcoming half term holiday and install a shine new windows server.
Now long story short. The school, for reasons that I won't go into here, are insisting that the work is done in this coming half term, the same half term I am away on holiday. My holiday was booked and organised months before the work was scheduled. The last few months have been a nightmare with planning this work, my discussions though line management and SMT about doing the work when I am present...nightmare. Anyway, I am getting side tracked, I said I wouldn't go into it :) ... At the end of the day the work needs to be carried out at this time and the IT Tech here is more than capable of overseeing the install.
The problem I have is that part of the work requires the replacement of the single SCSI 80 GB drive in the Mac server, the installation of two new 500GB drives, creation of a RAID 1 mirror and the reinstall of Mac OS 10.6 Server on the new drives. All of this needs to be done prior to the engineer on site and after school finishes Friday. Now I have the experience in Mac so its a job for me. Usually if I wasn't on holiday I would come in Saturday and get some overtime. The other option is to stay late on Friday night. I would like to try and avoid this.
So my questions is this: Is there a way I can complete the work prior to this on one my evenings I'm scheduled to work late? And still have the existing configuration working until the half term break?
One idea suggested was to install the two new drives and configure them separately from the existing drive. Would this work? Would it be as simple as installing the new drives and just selecting the drives to install the new OS install on? Then selecting the old drive to boot from until the work is started? Does anyone have any alternative ideas?
I'm confident on installing Mac OS Server, but just want some clarification on the hardware side and any issues this idea might cause.
Many thanks in advance.:)
Just subscribed to this but just wanted to include 2 people who may know
@Ross2k5 Also has a website here --> Education Mac, Apple Education Consultant
Can't seem to get the @ Thing working, those are there user ID's on here though :)
I have done this in the past also,
The way I did it was take a iMac or other intel based machine, installed server, updates, services. Unplugged it from the network setup IPs, DNS, OD. Then imaged it. When it came down to the night I switched us just made an image of the old server, and took a backup of OD. Restored the "NEW" image from the imac to the server, restored OD and was done.
Think that all made sense...
Now, I've never done this on a Mac Server and going to raid, but I don't see what this wouldn't work ...
Now, assuming you can get the drives into the machine and setup in RAID whilst having the other in there, you should be able to use it to simply clone the drive to the RAID array and then set them as the main boot drives and carry on as normal.
I've used it to replace drives and to also step up a size in drives, and it's worked great each time I have done.
Your other option (that I'm pretty confident would work with this) would be to have an external drive on USB or Firewire that you clone to, then put the drives into place, boot using the Alt button to boot from the external drive and then clone onto the RAID array.
Technically speaking, if it's hardware RAID, either should support it as it would be seen as a single drive .. but I've not tried it so .. :)
Originally Posted by mac_shinobi
I looked CCC, but I preferred the simplicity of SuperDuper in the end .. some say that's because I'm a simple bloke .. lol ..
free vs paid afaik - could be wrong??
Originally Posted by soveryapt
SuperDuper is free, unless you want to schedule when your cloning happens .. lol ..
Originally Posted by mac_shinobi
Hi all thanks for the replies...
The plan is to reinstall mac os on the server, so this will be a fresh install. The fresh install will be on two new 500GB drives which will be set up as RAID 1. Not sure if all the suggestions would work with this plan....
soveryapt: Your suggestion of cloning onto a drive seem like a good plan.
But looking into this, the Xserve has three hard drive bays, so if I buy two new 500 GB drives and install them into the empty bays, is there anything stopping me from doing the following:
Boot to install disc
Launch Disk Utility and configure the two new drives as RAID 1
Install and configure fresh install on new RAID, leaving existing drive as is
Once install is complete, reboot and select old drive via ALT key on boot up.
Then when work is carried out just boot to new drive
I've done something similar on our mac server (a g5 powermac) in the past. it let us roll back when it all went wrong. We didn't have a raid array, but I can't see any good reason why it shouldn't work as you have it planned. I think you can set the default startup disk in the system preferences. Insert usual comments about taking backups here.
When I did it, I removed the old drive so I didn't accidently install to the wrong drive. I also made sure both the drives were correctly labeled (both physically and in the os) so that I know what's what.
Its John Roberts, I did the original install of the xserve for you some 4 years ago!
If you just wanted to clone the current setup then some of the already suggested ideas of slotting in the two new 500gb Apple Drive Modules, setting up the raid and cloning using CCC or Superduper are what I would have done.
However it seems you want a fresh install and not a clone of existing setup. The idea you suggested in your last post is what I would do in this scenario.
Hi John...hope you are well... four years, doesn't time fly!
Originally Posted by JR-PCS
Thanks for you reply, the drives are on order and thanks for the confirmation. Looking forward to doing the work :)