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[#] Mon Aug 10 2009 16:49:51 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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So I've given up on the raid over lvm because I don't have enough parts to make it go. But it's still a neat idea.
I've decided instead to try the software raid on my boot drive.
I found a drive the same size as my boot drive and if I understand this right, I make a partition the same size as the boot partition (I don't have /var /usr /boot separated out) and tell mdadm to make a raid array and then tell grub to boot //dev/mda1 or whatever its called.
Apparently setting it up from scratch isn't too hard, but adding raid to an existing setup can be not simple.
You make the array with a space for another device then add it, then sync to it and hope you don't do it in the wrong direction or the blank drive synces over your real drive.
Anybody ever play with this, have any tips?

[#] Mon Aug 10 2009 17:24:01 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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Generally the way you migrate to RAID is to start with a partially-configured set (declare one drive as broken) and then migrate it, then bring the other drive into the set using raidhotadd.

Try this:

http://alephnull.net/software/linux-raid/7%20-%20FAQ.html

[#] Mon Aug 10 2009 20:28:20 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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Cool, thanks.

[#] Mon Aug 10 2009 20:49:47 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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wow that's scary, I have to blow away my old drive's partition table? yeesh.

[#] Mon Aug 10 2009 22:18:40 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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I didn't say it was safe; I said it was possible. :)

(I did do it once, a long time ago. But I had full tape backups too.)

[#] Tue Aug 11 2009 20:42:09 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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I just had an odd thought.
Since you can mount a file as a mountpoint, couldn't you do raid from one drive to a file on another drive (assuming there was enough space for the file?)
Wouldn't that be interesting.

[#] Tue Aug 11 2009 21:19:12 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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well as the saga unfolds....
I found out that the drive I was goign to raid to was .8gig short of the drive I was raiding from.
so I had to shorten the filesystem and partition and move my swap around, but it worked.
As in the machine still boots.
It's low level and geeky, but it's such old technology that it just works.
I'm impressed.

[#] Tue Aug 11 2009 21:20:55 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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cool. I just copied the partition table over, and it just worked. frikkin cool.

[#] Wed Aug 12 2009 02:26:09 EDT from dothebart @ Uncensored

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always leave some extra hundret MB's at the end of disks you're raiding...

the replacements you're bying might be a little smaller.



[#] Fri Aug 14 2009 17:14:56 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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always leave some extra hundret MB's at the end of disks you're raiding...


Windoze users don't have that luxury ... their "dynamic disk" layout expects to find metadata at the *end* of the volume.

[#] Mon Aug 17 2009 07:02:09 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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So I'm up to the part where I fix my grub config
I don't get it and the man pages aren't helping.
There's a command called "root device [hdbias]"
Has something to do with booting debian or something like that.
but I don't get the naming scheme for 'device'
it's like hd(0,0) or hd(0,1)
but it doesn't explain what those numbers mean.
Any ideas?

[#] Mon Aug 17 2009 07:18:43 EDT from dothebart @ Uncensored

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for that reason I stayed with lilo, as i know how to operate it, and get it through the more complicated cases, in which it is more what one knows from the rest of the linux handling.

LVM and Grub sucks. Grub in general sucks. Damn, that thing just has to fire up the kernel. I've got boxes that won't boot for months. I don't want to make a bootloader diploma before I can handle cerntain stuff.



[#] Mon Aug 17 2009 09:25:00 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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Grub is indeed over-complicated. I suspect that it's because their primary design tenet is "Linux is the kernel and GNU is the operating system" rather than "just boot the damn thing and don't confuse the user."

I must admit that I too have, on occasion, simply switched back to LILO when I couldn't figure out what grub was doing wrong.

[#] Mon Aug 17 2009 10:09:24 EDT from dothebart @ Uncensored

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it starts with grub having its verry own syntax for the devices (which is borrowed from the HURD I think, which was its origin afaik) and ends up with the complicated manual doing it all verry theoreticaly and not on linux / *bsd relevant samples.



[#] Tue Aug 18 2009 04:50:38 EDT from Stefan @ Uncensored

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That's all true. But grub is really powerful and also more flexible than lilo.

So grub: +1 ;-)



[#] Tue Aug 18 2009 08:29:10 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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One of the many things I'd do if I had unlimited free time would be to create a fork of grub called "Stitch" (which is what grub should have been called in the first place) that differs from the mainline in two ways:

1. It would refer to Linux as an operating system

2. It would have documentation

[#] Tue Aug 18 2009 13:20:21 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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I figured it out. Then I asked somebody on serverfault just so I could score some points and make sure I was right.

Grub is another perfect example of why linux sucks just as much as everything else LILO was fine, could have been fixed to do whatever was missing, but no. Somebody had to write something new from scratch that was better.
And of course all the distros picked it up because it was newer and better.
Yay. Progress. How I love thee.
They should have called Grub SVN. In fact, they should name any project that pointlessly replaces an existing working project svn just to make the point.
Or maybe they should call it Progress. And just use 7 level deep version numbers to distinguish between them.

Anyway it seems that while everybody implies that root (hd0,0) refers to the boot partition, it does not.
It refers to the partition with the boot directory on it.
Since everybody on the planet but me has a separate boot partition, they all speak of it like that's how it works, but in fact, it just needs to know what the partition to go after is, and you can then refer to everthing else by path.
This install is decades old, who knowshow it got this way. But I think I get everything I need to know to make the raid work.
Just need a few solid contiguous hours to try it out.

[#] Tue Aug 18 2009 13:21:14 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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oh, and the way I read it, grub is supposed to be able to run on and boot all sorts of kernels, not jut linux.
Do I care? It's a fucking linux machine, run the LInux LOader for shits sake.

[#] Tue Aug 18 2009 14:01:55 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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lilo and grub really are completely different approaches to booting a Linux system. lilo relies on knowing a map of the exact disk sectors upon which the kernel and initrd reside. grub knows enough about the filesystem that it can find them on its own. grub also eliminates some arcane requirements about how you lay out your boot partition.

The problem isn't that lilo didn't need to be replaced; it's that grub was a shitty replacement. I would have rather seen syslinux optimized for general-purpose hard disk use.

You're gonna love this: http://www.gnu.org/software/grub/grub-2.en.html

"GRUB 2 has been rewritten from scratch to clean up everything..."

[#] Tue Aug 18 2009 14:45:51 EDT from Ford II @ Uncensored

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Jesus. scripting? dynamic module loading?
It's a fucking kernel loading. It's got to find a file and load it in and run it. That's it. Why do they have to make everything so damn complicated.

What the world needs is more vista.

Vista is the first popular example that I know of where the general population finally said "no I'm not just going to blindly take your shit anymore."

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