Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I am running a server in Dell which has RAID1 and hot plug 2 disks. It's been running for a while, but I was thinking it may crash anytime. So got a spare one, and wanted to test it how it works.

I have never done this before. Can I simply, on a running machine, unplug the Disk 2 and connect the new Disk there? (Without interrupting the service as a silent mode?)

Or does it have to be shutdown first, and unplugged, reinstalling all software/centos/etc etc? How do you do this update?

P.S: Also how do you know when you replaced the disk? Do you have anything special to monitor that disk 1 or disk 2 is end of life?

share|improve this question
How is the RAID configured? Is it setup with mdadm, or are using hardware RAID? – Zoredache Aug 5 '11 at 20:29
@Zoredache: Its a hardware RAID, Dell server – YumYumYum Aug 5 '11 at 20:30
up vote 1 down vote accepted

If the controller supports hotplug and the drivers are installed you shouldn't have any problems. The RAID software included (if any) may give you an indication on each disk's health status. You can also check the SMART status on each drive individually with utilities such as smartctl.

share|improve this answer
Thank you very much. Do you mean, without shutting down the Dell server i can just unplug the hot plug disk and replace it with the new one? I am just so new for this very scared, but trying to make sure it will work. – YumYumYum Aug 5 '11 at 20:46
If the RAID controller supports it, and you have the proper drivers installed, you should be fine. I'd do it during off-peak hours to be safe. If the hardware fails and you're still under warranty, return it. If they claim it supports hot swappable disks, and hot swapping causes hardware failure, they don't have a light to stand on. – John T Aug 5 '11 at 20:48

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.