Can I move a RAID array to SSDs just by swapping them out one-at-a-time?
June 14, 2020 1:17 PM   Subscribe

I have 2, 2TB spinning drives in RAID 1.

As long as I buy 2TB SSDs, and replace them one by one... can I just sorta fake out the RAID controller to rebuild two "failed" drives? I'm trying to minimize downtime.

As a bonus, I get this week's backup, twice?
posted by fvox13 to Computers & Internet (5 answers total)
Theoretically, yes, because that's the whole point of a RAID controller.

In practice, you must have an offline, tested, full backup on other media before trying, because a RAID controller is the most common source of a false sense of security that leads to data loss.
posted by fritley at 1:24 PM on June 14, 2020 [5 favorites]

Yes, but I guarantee this will be the moment your hardware raid controller (or the other disk) fails.

So as long as you're OK with that, and you have actual backups, it's fine.
posted by dmd at 1:53 PM on June 14, 2020

Awesome. I'll give it a try after I do a full backup. Thanks!
posted by fvox13 at 2:06 PM on June 14, 2020

Note that rebuilding a raid mirror from the 2TB non-SSD will take some time.

Also note that your backplane will presumably be SATA. And that will be a speed limiting factor, as well as a mild source of incompatibility. Newer SSDs use the m2 form factor, which is smaller, and NVMe protocol which is faster. I tried buying a m2 -> sata adaptor for an NVMe drive only to discover that some m2 SSDs actually speak sata, and that was what the adapter was for.
posted by pwnguin at 2:31 PM on June 14, 2020 [1 favorite]

Two different 2tb drives are going to be just enough different size that the raid controller will get angry.

You will want to go through the effort to build a new array and copy from one to the other.
posted by TheAdamist at 2:52 PM on June 14, 2020 [4 favorites]

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