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Cluster Migrations Involving New Storage: Drive Letters and Labels

Updated: November 30, 2007

Applies To: Windows Server 2008

This topic describes considerations for drive letters and drive labels for a migration from a server cluster running Windows Server 2003 to a failover cluster running Windows Server 2008 where you use new storage for the migrated cluster. This is in contrast with a scenario where you use the same storage before and after migration.

You must perform the copying or moving of data or folders (including shared folder settings) during a migration. The wizard for migrating clustered resources does not copy data from one location to another.

If you use drive letters on disks in the cluster storage, you cannot have the same drive letters or disk labels on new and old storage when you are running the Migrate a Cluster wizard. Otherwise, you will not be able to migrate the associated resources and resource groups. Instead, you must run the wizard first, and later assign any drive letters or labels in new storage that duplicate the drive letters or labels in the old storage.

In this context, a useful way to choose initial labels (not letters) to assign to disks in new storage is to choose a label that indicates the future disk letter of a disk. For example, in the new storage, when you are configuring the disk that will eventually be disk F (a disk letter already used in the old storage), you can assign the new disk a label of DiskF. (This assumes that the label DiskF is not already in use in the old storage.) Then when you run the Migrate a Cluster wizard and need to specify the new replacement for disk F in old storage, you can look at the list and select the new disk labeled DiskF. After you finish the wizard and then open the Disk Management snap-in, it is easy to recognize the label DiskF and then assign the drive letter F: to that disk.

The following illustrations show stages in the process of carrying out a migration that uses new storage for the new cluster. The first illustration shows Cluster Administrator on the old server cluster, with a resource group called CLUS-FS1 that uses a disk with drive letter F.

Fileshare group, Cluster Administrator

The next illustration shows a preparatory stage on a new cluster node. The new storage has been attached, and Disk Management has been used to label disks in the new storage. One of the new disks is labeled DiskF. Note that this is a label, not a drive letter, to avoid duplication of drive letter F between the new and old storage.

Windows Server 2008, Disk Management

The next illustration shows Failover Cluster Management after several disks, including DiskF, have been added to the new cluster. These disks now appear in Available Storage.

Failover Cluster Management, Storage

The next illustration shows the Migrate a Cluster Wizard on the Select Resource Groups page. The resource group CLUS-FS1 has been selected.

Migrate a Cluster wizard, Select Resource Groups

The next illustration shows the Migrate a Cluster Wizard on the Specify Storage for Migration page. The display shows that the resource group CLUS-FS1 uses Disk F: in the storage in the old cluster.

Migrate a Cluster wizard, Specify Storage

The next illustration shows the Migrate a Cluster Wizard on the Select Storage for a Resource Group page. The selection shows that instead of Disk F: in the old storage, DiskF in the new storage will be used.

Migrate a Cluster wizard, Select Storage

The next illustration shows the Migrate a Cluster Wizard on the Specify Storage for Migration page again, and now, for the resource group CLUS-FS1, DiskF appears as the disk to use in the storage for the new cluster.

Migrate a Cluster wizard with storage specified

After completing the illustrated process, you can assign drive letters as needed on the disks in the new storage.

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