Can I replace Boot Disk with New Disk and Fresh Rockstor install

Set up Rockstor some time ago, but haven’t used my NAS server very much so it’s running an old version which has been upgraded about 2 or 3 times. I have two RAID 1 arrays, each has a two physical 3TB hard disks. Rockstor is installed on a separate drive (Sandisk USB memoryStick)

The last time I switched it on, it failed to boot the latest installed version:
Rockstor (4.6.0-1.e17.elrepo.x86_64) 3 (Core) with debugging
It wouldn’t boot with the previous version:
Rockstor (4.4.5-1.e17.elrepo.x86_64) 3 (Core) with debugging
Rockstor (4.4.5-1.e17.elrepo.x86_64) 3 (Core)

But luckily it did boot with an earlier version:
Rockstor (4.3.3-1.e17.elrepo.x86_64) 3 (Core)

I was able to log on to the web dashboard, and enable the Samba shares which has allowed me to access the two RAID1 shares, and make an additional backup of most of my data. But the web dashboard is showing the warning:
You are running an unsupported kernel(4.3.3-1.el7.elrepo.x86_64). Some features may not work properly. Please reboot and the system will automatically boot using the supported kernel(4.6.0-1.el7.elrepo.x86_64)

I did buy support for one year some time ago, but never managed to get it upgraded past 4.6.0-1

Would I be able to build a new Rockstor install on a new boot disk, install this on my server, and be able to import my two RAID1 arrays retaining the data?
I can only export the configuration while it is running the oldest version 4.3.3-1, so am not sure if this configuration backup would be ok to use?
Would a new Rockstor install need a backup of the configuration to find /identify the two RAID1 arrays?

Thank you.

@John Helllo again.
So you’ve had quite the journey there on older (read ancient) kernels.
Re:

Yes, that is the intention. But you no longer need to build the installer itself as we have pre-build installers here:
https://rockstor.com/dls.html
with a how-to on this new version “Built on openSUSE” Leap 15.3, or at least it’s installer, here:
https://rockstor.com/docs/installation/installer-howto.html

You pools should import just find. And if not then details what happened if they don’t here on the forum so we can advise how we might the that sorted. We haven’t had an outright failure yet, but there have been a number of hick-ups, mainly concerning quotas and large pools, or poorly pools of course.

Nice.

Thanks, and lets see if we can get you up and running on the new v4. Loads of improvements, under the hood mainly but still.

Back then there was far less saved in this config backup. But all that is saved should be restored OK.
Be sure to first update to 4.1.0-0 before you try the config import though.

No. In fact you would import the pool before doing the config restore. But again that’s a super old config save so take some good notes on your current critical parts of the config, just in case. But the pool import will also import the shares and snapshots. You may only need to recreate the shares and set up Rock-ons again if you use them, but I’m not sure we even had a working rock-on system then. And for a while the Rock-ons would fail to start after a reboot anyway. Rough times back then.

Main point of caution is to ensure you dont’ accidentally install to a data drive. That would be bad. You could even detach all data drives so that it is impossible to make a mistake. The you can do all updates and install the 4.1.0-0 etc and then after shutting down once all has settled re-attach the data drives and then power on to do the import and config restore. Although you may want to just setup from scratch if it’s a fairly simple install.

Install is far faster these days so theres that.

Hope that helps.

Also look to this recent forum post for a similar question asked recently:

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I know some probably think I’m getting a bit boring now (but it won’t stop me), but do you have a current backup of your data before upgrading. You never know…
:slight_smile:

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Hello Phil,

Thank you for the comprehensive reply to my query. I wasn’t using my NAS very often so as it was working as a simple network storage I was happy leaving it at the last successful upgrade. I don’t believe I am using any Rockons, but am interested in setting up Plex on it at a later date.

Having read your answers, I will remove all the disks from my Nas (which is an old HP Gen7 N54L Microserver) and use a new disk to set up a new Rockstor install, then insert the 4 Raid disks and see if it finds the 2 Raid1 arrays…

Would I better off just connecting the first 2 disks making up one of the two RAID1 arrays, checking that works ok, and then connecting and importing the last 2 disks making up the second RAID1 array?

Hello Geoff, I have copied the majority of my files to other disks on my Windows PC, but haven’t used any backup software as such. So there is a slight risk as I don’t know how well Windows verifies file copies compared to decent backup software, but I have copied the most important files to two different disks.

@John Hello again,
Re:

Sounds like a plan. Be sure to fully update the install to get 4.1.0-0 before you do the final shutdown before the drive re-attachment.

This is likely why you had such difficulty during the install last and had to jump back to a really old version of Rockstor to complete a successful install.

You may have to add a custom kernel boot option to get around quirks in this hardware. But it should be doable. Just take care to note or photograph down any error messages you get during the install if it doesn’t go as per the How-to:
https://rockstor.com/docs/installation/installer-howto.html
That way folks here on the forum can advise what may be needed to get this install done and the resulting install booting as intended.

Not really as you will only be importing one btrfs volume (btrfs raid array) or Pool in Rockstor speak anyway. Just given the system time to settle between each import. But we have to get the install sorted first of course.

I can chip in on this one:

It doesn’t.

Nice. And given you have used btrfs raid1 in both pools you also have two independent devices each with a checksummed copy within each pool. We just need to get the install sorted to get to them :slight_smile: .

Hope that helps.

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I’m totally with you there. It doesn’t matter whether you use formal backup software or a simple copy and paste process, the key thing is that you have copies of the files you want to keep safe.

By the way, I use regular rsync cron jobs (nightly and weekly) to create my backups to 2 different devices. I also have an online backup.

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