Replacing server hard drives with larger ones using CloneZilla

These are the steps I use to replace/upgrade hard drives in a server.  In this example, I am upgrading from 1TB RAID1 to a 2TB RAID1.  I am going to use CloneZilla to clone the old drive(s) to the new drive(s).

 

Tools used:

  1. CloneZilla
  2. Linux Mint Live USB

 

 

NOTE!!! No matter how much you want to use CloneZilla to resize the partitions while cloning, just don’t do it.  Save yourself the headache and follow these steps!

 

  1. Install the new drives in the chassis and boot into the RAID controller
  2. Define the new array, initialize it (if needed) and make it bootable
  3. Boot to CloneZilla, I prefer to use YUMI to make a bootable USB drive with CloneZilla as well as other regularly used tools
  4. Select basic and do a local disk to local disk clone
  5. Once the clone is complete, shut down the server and disconnect the old drive(s).  Disconnecting the old drives is important, it makes sure the boot loader is working and I have seen the old drives cause new drives to not boot properly
  6. Turn the server back on,  it should boot up as if nothing has changed.  Go into disk manager,  you should see unallocated space at the end of the disk
  7. Boot into Linux Mint Live
  8. If it doesn’t already have GParted install, go into the Software Manager and install it
  9. Launch GParted, right-click on the data partion and select Resize/Move and move it to the end of the disk.  If it is inside an extended partition, you need to resize the extended partition to use the rest of the unallocated space, then resize/move the data partition.  You will get a warning that moving partitions may make them unbootable, but in our case, the data partition isn’t bootable, so no worries
  10. Click on the arrow in the upper-right corner that submits the changes and wait for it to complete
  11. Reboot back into windows and make sure everything is still working
  12. Shut down and boot back into Linux Mint Live and launch GParted again
  13. Next, right-click on the OS partition and select Resize/Move.  Set the desired new size.  I prefer to make it at least 100GB, so change it to 102400 and save it
  14. Click on the arrow in the upper-right corner that submits the changes and wait for it to complete
  15. Reboot back into windows and make sure everything is still working
  16. Shut down and boot back into Linux Mint Live and launch GParted again
  17. Now, right-click on the data partition again and select Resize/Move.  Drag the front of the partition all the way to the left.  This will make the data partition fill up the rest of the disk space
  18. Click on the arrow in the upper-right corner that submits the changes and wait for it to complete

 

That’s it.  Reboot the server and it should boot right up into the OS without issues.  If windows performs a disk check on any of the reboots, that’s a good sign, let it complete the disk check.