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Converting a MBR partition to GPT with an NSS pool on it

Can I convert a partition from MBR to GPT while there is a Pool on it?
and then have the Pool expand on the new space available? I'm assuming
I'd need to dismount the volume and deactivate the pool to do this.

Background:
A client of mine went and grew a virtual disk to 2.5 TB (from 1.5TB)
and then wondered why the Pool/Volume only went up to 2TB. The
partition was originally created years ago, just about when GPT became
an option so we missed that opportunity. Currently OES11.3 (waiting
for new backup that lets us upgrade the kernel)

I think we have the space to do juggle of a new virtual disk,
initialize as GPT, move the Pool to it, then migrate the virtual disk
back to the datastore we need it part of. but that will take some
time, especially for the site replication.

So has anyone switched a partition from MBR to GPT under the covers?
and how did it go?

Yes this feels risky, but the pay off is big enough to want to explore
it some. I will have full backup if I do proceed, and I am getting my
test box up to the right level to test this, though with just a few GB
so even that won't be a full test.


Andy of
http://KonecnyConsulting.ca in Toronto
Knowledge Partner
http://forums.novell.com/member.php/75037-konecnya
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Andy,

Am 25.01.2017 um 05:38 schrieb Andy Konecny:
> Can I convert a partition from MBR to GPT while there is a Pool on it?


Well, there are tools that claim in general to be able to change a MBR
Disk to GPT without deleting the data on it. If that's true and if yes,
if that's universally true for all partition types, I don't know, but I
would think not. The problwem is the vastly different partition table
between MBR and GPT, and NSS' own "internal" partition structure which
sits on top of the tradition partitions. As I doubt any tool exists that
knows about the NSS partitions, I also doubt they would survive such a
transition-

> and then have the Pool expand on the new space available?

....
> I think we have the space to do juggle of a new virtual disk,


And as long as that's the case, I personally suggest to do the pool move
juggle anyways, regardless of the partition type. A moved pool consists
of oen segment, whereas an expanded pool consists of multiple segments,
and the latter comes with a very noticeable performance hit. So leaving
GPT and MBR aside, I would *never* expand pools if I have enough
(temporary) space to move them around to grow them.

CU,
--
Massimo Rosen
Micro Focus Knowledge Partner
No emails please!
http://www.cfc-it.de
CU,
--
Massimo Rosen
Micro Focus Knowledge Partner
No emails please!
http://www.cfc-it.de
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In article <Gr%hA.73$tn5.42@novprvlin0913.provo.novell.com>, Massimo
Rosen wrote:
> Well, there are tools that claim in general to be able to change a MBR
> Disk to GPT without deleting the data on it


That is what some of the vmWare tools were claiming, and the client just
followed that blindly. <sigh> I've instructed him to included me in all
instances of growing anything past the 2TB threshhold since this.

I finished running a test on my normal box for such abuses, and even
though it looks like you can change the partition type withing iManager,
it just doesn't actually do that no matter how I otherwise edit it.

So now to work with the client for the space juggling.


Andy of
http://KonecnyConsulting.ca in Toronto
Knowledge Partner
http://forums.novell.com/member.php/75037-konecnya
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Andy Konecny wrote:

> A client of mine went and grew a virtual disk to 2.5 TB (from 1.5TB)
> and then wondered why the Pool/Volume only went up to 2TB.


Can you shrink the original virtual disk down to 2 GB then add a second
virtual disk to the VM?

You can have a pool greater than 2 GB by adding multiple disks to the
pool. This way you wouldn't have to mess around with GPT.

--
Kevin Boyle - Knowledge Partner
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In article <sw9iA.169$y54.64@novprvlin0914.provo.novell.com>, Kevin Boyle
wrote:
> Can you shrink the original virtual disk down to 2 GB then add a second
> virtual disk to the VM?


I could, but not sure if I can do so safely.

> You can have a pool greater than 2 GB by adding multiple disks to the
> pool. This way you wouldn't have to mess around with GPT.

Yes, I've done that elsewhere, including at this client. They feel ready
for GPT, and this particular pool has been extended a few times even
though it doesn't show multiple segments, so Massimo's observation of
impacted performance is also a concern.


Andy of
http://KonecnyConsulting.ca in Toronto
Knowledge Partner
http://forums.novell.com/member.php/75037-konecnya
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Absent Member.
Absent Member.

On Wed, 25 Jan 2017 22:20:08 +0000, Kevin Boyle wrote:

> Andy Konecny wrote:
>
>> A client of mine went and grew a virtual disk to 2.5 TB (from 1.5TB)
>> and then wondered why the Pool/Volume only went up to 2TB.

>
> Can you shrink the original virtual disk down to 2 GB then add a second
> virtual disk to the VM?


you can only expand NSS pools, not shrink them ...

I have not tested this before writing here so you may want to doublecheck
before going live with assumptions.

You could try creating a bigger GPT partition on another LUN, and than
perform a ´pool move´ from the old pool ?

The only thing I know for sure does not work, is a pool move between NSS32
<> NSS64 on OES2015 but think between DOS & GPT partitions this should
work without any issues.

> You can have a pool greater than 2 GB by adding multiple disks to the
> pool. This way you wouldn't have to mess around with GPT.


right, on OES11 SPx you can expand a pool to 8TB max (4 * 2TB).

Cheers
Hans
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Hans,

Am 27.01.2017 um 11:19 schrieb Hans van den Heuvel:
> On Wed, 25 Jan 2017 22:20:08 +0000, Kevin Boyle wrote:
>
>> Andy Konecny wrote:
>>
>>> A client of mine went and grew a virtual disk to 2.5 TB (from 1.5TB)
>>> and then wondered why the Pool/Volume only went up to 2TB.

>>
>> Can you shrink the original virtual disk down to 2 GB then add a second
>> virtual disk to the VM?

>
> you can only expand NSS pools, not shrink them ...


The suggestion was to shrink the (virtual) disk, not the NSS partition
on it (which doesn't cover the whole disk anyways, as the disk is over
2TB). That should indeed be possible, as long as there's enough room for
the existing NSS parittion(s) to fit on it.

> You could try creating a bigger GPT partition on another LUN, and than
> perform a ´pool move´ from the old pool ?


That's what I suggested. 😉

> right, on OES11 SPx you can expand a pool to 8TB max (4 * 2TB).


That's not exactly true. Yes, it's 8TB max before 2015, but it doesn't
have to be 4 * 2TB any longer. In oes11 and higher, you can have a NSS
Pool of 1 * 8TB for instance (using GPT partitions). Only before OES11
you were also limited to 2TB disks and partitions max.

CU,
--
Massimo Rosen
Micro Focus Knowledge Partner
No emails please!
http://www.cfc-it.de
CU,
--
Massimo Rosen
Micro Focus Knowledge Partner
No emails please!
http://www.cfc-it.de
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mrosen;2449685 wrote:
Hans,

Am 27.01.2017 um 11:19 schrieb Hans van den Heuvel:
> On Wed, 25 Jan 2017 22:20:08 +0000, Kevin Boyle wrote:
>
>> Andy Konecny wrote:
>>
>>> A client of mine went and grew a virtual disk to 2.5 TB (from 1.5TB)
>>> and then wondered why the Pool/Volume only went up to 2TB.

>>
>> Can you shrink the original virtual disk down to 2 GB then add a second
>> virtual disk to the VM?

>
> you can only expand NSS pools, not shrink them ...


The suggestion was to shrink the (virtual) disk, not the NSS partition
on it (which doesn't cover the whole disk anyways, as the disk is over
2TB). That should indeed be possible, as long as there's enough room for
the existing NSS parittion(s) to fit on it.

> You could try creating a bigger GPT partition on another LUN, and than
> perform a ´pool move´ from the old pool ?


That's what I suggested. 😉

> right, on OES11 SPx you can expand a pool to 8TB max (4 * 2TB).


That's not exactly true. Yes, it's 8TB max before 2015, but it doesn't
have to be 4 * 2TB any longer. In oes11 and higher, you can have a NSS
Pool of 1 * 8TB for instance (using GPT partitions). Only before OES11
you were also limited to 2TB disks and partitions max.

CU,
--
Massimo Rosen
Micro Focus Knowledge Partner
No emails please!
http://www.cfc-it.de


+1 to Massimo's suggestion about Pool Move. Used it quite a bit and it worked beautifully.

All hail the pool move!
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In article <kjhurni.7szohz@no-mx.forums.microfocus.com>, Kjhurni wrote:
> +1 to Massimo's suggestion about Pool Move. Used it quite a bit and it
> worked beautifully.
>
> All hail the pool move!


Hans starts with what reminded me of "we come to praise NSS, not bury it"
and then this. We are sounding so noble now, what happened?

Pool move is winning for the DST destination. Now to just arrange it.

Thanx for the thoughts and pointers.


Andy of
http://KonecnyConsulting.ca in Toronto
Knowledge Partner
http://forums.novell.com/member.php/75037-konecnya
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