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Old 10-01-2007, 08:23 PM   #1
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saving a raid+lvm partition on upgrade

I want to upgrade from FC4 to FC6 on all my linux boxes.
My Entertainment box as a lot of pictures, music and video on a raid 1 plus LVM partition.
The OS uses the first three partitions /boot,/,/swap on md0, md1, and md2. The fourth partition /video on md3 I would like to keep intact when I install FC6. Can I recover a software raid 1 plus LVM partition after installing the new OS on the first three partitions? During the installation of a new OS if I define the mount point /video and select "do not format" will the data be recovered and readable?
I have searched and understand raid 1 building and recovery. The LVM on top of raid 1 using xfs has me confused. Can a linux distribution figure all that out and use the files formed by and earlier release? I'm gussing I will have to redefine volume groups before they will be readable. As I recall the rationale for putting the OS on separate partitions from the data was to facilitate an upgrade or OS change while saving data. A pointer to how to actually do this would greatly be appreciated.
Old 10-01-2007, 11:04 PM   #2
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Location: Wash DC Metro Area
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Holy cow but you've got some difficult issues. I know that when I developed my RAID 0 config, I spent a couple months trying to find answers to RAID questions. A few people helped, but mostly I performed everything thru trial and error. I didn't have LVM, because I didn't need it, but I was amazed at my ability to wipe my drives, put them back together again, REDEFINE MY PARTITIONS, and still end up with /dev/md0 having the data I started with. (Usually, I was trying to erase my install and start over again. Occasionally I would lose it all, but often, I'd repartition and then put the partitions back and then rebuild md0 and it'd be like I didn't do anything at all.)

I don't know what FC6 is, but if it's an upgrade to FC4 then you should be alright unless the Changelogs say that RAID partitions are not backwards compatible.

If I were you, tho, I'd be breaking out DVD+RW disks and copying 4 Gigs of /video files to someplace safe!

Old 10-01-2007, 11:09 PM   #3
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This page has good info on how to mount/rescue a LVM partition onto a Knoppix live CD. Obviously installing Fedora is different than using a live CD, but test it out with a live CD. If it can activate and mount the volume groups, then Fedora should be able to as well. These instructions are knoppix/Debian specific, but its CLI stuff, so it probably will work regardless of what live CD you try it with.

I've mounted LVM partitions this way, but never software RAID1 too. RAID1 shouldn't be a big deal, as the data is mirrored. Even if the live CD sees it as 2 separate units, just mount the first, then remove the 2nd from the software RAID, then re-add it and it will be mirrored from the first. RAID0 would be more tricky I suspect.

Old 10-02-2007, 11:03 AM   #4
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thanks for reply

I'll just try an os install and lrt you know what happens.


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