[clug] Mirroring boot disk on Debian

Nerdvana - Stephen Walsh s.walsh at nerdvana.com.au
Wed Nov 17 11:38:02 GMT 2004

I've done similar with FreeBSD, but slightly differently;

Do a really minimal install on the first drive, and reboot the system off of
it. Then, using atacontrol, I then do a

%atacontrol create RAID1 <disk1> <disk2>

which creates a new (but completely uninitialized) RAID container, ar0
consisting of my first and second drives.

Then I could reboot off of my install CD and, besides recognizing drives at
ad0 and ad1, ar0 was offered as a destination for the install.

Basically, you will probably need to do a base install, use your preferred
tool to create the RAID container, then reinstall, specifying the (new) Raid


Stephen Walsh
Nerdvana Systems Pty Ltd
Ph:02 626 22 555

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-----Original Message-----
From: Alastair D'Silva
Sent: Wednesday, 17 November 2004 9:53 PM
To: 'Stephen Jenkin'; 'Canberra Linux User Group'
Subject: RE: [clug] Mirroring boot disk on Debian

One trick I do under FreeBSD is as follows:

1. Boot from CD
2. Create software mirror on hdds
3. Query the RAID software (Vinum in my case) about the offset of the
underlying subdisks
4. Create a real partition of the appropriate size in the partition
table, with the offset set to the value returned from (3), and mark it
5. Perform an install onto the software RAID mirror
6. Reboot (and cross your fingers)

I'm sure something similar can be achieved under Linux.

Alastair D'Silva           mob: 0413 485 733
Networking Consultant      fax: 0413 181 661
New Millennium Networking  web: http://www.newmillennium.net.au

> -----Original Message-----
> From: linux-bounces+clug=d-silva.org at lists.samba.org
> [mailto:linux-bounces+clug=d-silva.org at lists.samba.org] On
> Behalf Of Stephen Jenkin
> Sent: Wednesday, 17 November 2004 2:01 PM
> To: Canberra Linux User Group
> Subject: [clug] Mirroring boot disk on Debian
> Anyone done this or can give me pointers??
> I've had two goes & am not happy with the result...
> Debian (sarge/testing) has install options of LVM or Neil
> Brown's MDADM [multi-disk.  Not quite mirroring...] Debian
> doesn't support booting from either. [or so it says]
> The sarge-installer's version of LVM concatenated the disks,
> [raid 0], did not seem to offer me raid 1 :-(
> Found a package 'raidtools2' & read the doco - gives two
> methods of creating bootable mirrored disk.  Is this "the one
> true way"?? [apologies in advance, not meant to offend, just
> my humour]
> steve
> Steve Jenkin, Unix Sys Admin
> 0412 786 915 (+61 412 786 915)
> PO Box 48, Kippax ACT 2615, AUSTRALIA
> sjenkin at canb.auug.org.au http://www.tip.net.au/~sjenkin
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