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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 2:20 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 09, 2012 2:17 pm
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Location: Cool, California
Hello,

I have a W520 with two 500GB drives in stripped RAID configuration. One of the two drives has been making a crunching noise, followed by a beep.

I called tech support, and it was not very helpful. I have the next business day at your door warranty, and they are sending me a new hard drive to install myself, in about 5 business days (not sure how this is, given the warranty I've had, and never used until now...).

In any event, my drives are nearly full, and if I'm going to go through the trouble of changing one anyway, I'd rather just replace them both with larger drives.

My goal is to have the largest drives possible, and do the upgrade as easily as possible. I don't really care if RAID is in effect or not, as I don't feel I've noticed any real performance increase anyway.

I have in the past upgraded Thinkpad drives to larger drives, but these were in single drive systems. I'm "handy" with computers, in a do it yourself kind of way, but really just an amateur with this stuff. I'm concerned about the dual drive aspect and the RAID aspect with this one. The tech support guy said they have no information to share about how to do a drive upgrade, that they just ship the drive (which I'm probably not going to use now anyway).

So these are my questions, and thanks to anyone who takes the time to share any advice...

1) What is the best, largest compatible replacement drives to get? I don't care about speed of the drive as much as size.

2) What is the best way to copy off/clone/mirror the existing content on my existing drives? I bought a device off Amazon to do this a few times - one of the times, the device literally started smoking... I'm not sure where I put the last one I used (where you connect to the new, bare drive).

3) Can I just disable RAID in the bios once I've copied the old drives to the new drives (or to an external backp-up drive)? If it is easier to just disable it and have two separate drives on my system, I'm fine with that.

Again, thanks for any help with this.

Jason


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 7:07 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2009 11:16 am
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G'Day Jason;
Replaceing HD's in W Series are same as the older TPs... and nearly as easy with RAID.
(I have had mine running with the new 750GB's and they were the 'highest' at that time)

I got my TWINS from here; but main thing to remember - the HEIGHT MUST BE 9.5mm
or you not able to fit in the Main bay (adaptor bay I have had used a 12mm high drive and it 'just fits')

here is what I did - (have Raid 1)

1) boot wth NEW FORMATTED DRIVE (750GB) in Adaptor bay , and rebuild RAID
hwne above is done , reboot anc 'double check'
2) Power down and reboot to Bios , change to boot from "adaptor bay" drive....
3) rebuild RAID with new FORMATED DRIVE (750GB)
4) once done , you can change Boot Options to -boot from MAIN DRIVE BAY

(however my W520 boots from 128GB -SSD in the WWAN slot - instead of Gobi card) and no I dont have FACTORY Partitions (dont need it)


If all else fails , you get ACRONIS " and clone/ IMAGE Drive and swap them - I did that also .. and worked for me !

Hope this helps

Cheers

_________________
Work: [b]None - Retired ! Yipee!! ~~Older/Hm use:Asus Zenbook i7FHD~~ w701ds CTO;W520cto;T61P-IPSmodels; T43P,...&700Tstill going strong!! DEC Alpha Series OS: Win7x64; OSX; SuSe Linux; RedHat~~


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 7:29 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 09, 2012 2:17 pm
Posts: 3
Location: Cool, California
Thank you for the response. So is that the procedure to keep RAID 0, or remove RAID?

I ordered two of the drives you recommended... and one of the Apricorn SATA Wire 3.0 Notebook Drive Upgrade Kits...

Jason


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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2012 7:35 am 
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Hi jason

Sorry maybe I dont get it- not sure why you need the Apr* cable ?
the steps I wrote above = you dont need anything else - just use the 'existing' stepup
as shipped from factory.


so if your still want to get the Sata cable .... i would recommend this item:
<external drive + cable> and ..use THAT CABLE via the USB PORT to do the "CLONE/IMAGE" of the MAIN DRIVE
(i got mine from best buy - used and returned as they have free/no chanrge returns lol)
so than the steps should be:
1) De-Raid via Bios; and reboot
2) install clone / image software like ...Acronis True Image etc ( free version will do)
3) reboot and plug in the 'new 750Gb" drive ...... and clone MAIN DRIVE ONLY.
4) once the 'cloned drive' is done , exchange that into MAIN DRIVE..
5) reboot , ( but remove the other drive in adaptor bay) , once fully booted , check everything works ( but DO NOT MAKE ANY CHANGES or ADD/DELETE ANYTHING ))
6) Shut down and install the 'other 750GB' into the adaptor bay.... and
7) Change BIOS to RAID , reboot and rebuild RAID
8) once all raid rebuild is done , you should be set to go....
ps ..not sure what intel you got ( mine is XM) and it took 2hrs+ to rebuild my raids from the factory 320GB.... and everything worked like a charm...

and now laptop boots to desktop in around 12-15sec! never needed SSD ! ( I dont have colour calab etc ,, but rest is fully loaded spec

_________________
Work: [b]None - Retired ! Yipee!! ~~Older/Hm use:Asus Zenbook i7FHD~~ w701ds CTO;W520cto;T61P-IPSmodels; T43P,...&700Tstill going strong!! DEC Alpha Series OS: Win7x64; OSX; SuSe Linux; RedHat~~


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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2012 7:44 am 
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Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2009 11:16 am
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Also: I must add :
the last post (above) is really not necessary , in W520 with RAID enabled from factory.

So than you can just add a new drive (750gb) to '2nd bay'- adaptor and rebuild raid.
then shut down and 'exchange' drives ie = place the NEW750gb to MAIN drive, and reboot-
than add the other new drive(2nd 750gb) to the adaptor bay and rebuild raid.

This way , you dont need ANYTHING else like Acronis Nor any CABLES etc.
This way , also = will retain the FULL FACTORY INSTALLS ie -- recovery partitions etc will be intact and same as per factory. (me I dont care to keep the factory partition so once I create recovery disks I delete them)

Only time I have used the above 'cable method' is for T420 or ANY OTHER VERSION that dont have RAID SETUPS (same goes for PC; servers or tablets)

hope this dont confuse you ,,,,
Cheers

_________________
Work: [b]None - Retired ! Yipee!! ~~Older/Hm use:Asus Zenbook i7FHD~~ w701ds CTO;W520cto;T61P-IPSmodels; T43P,...&700Tstill going strong!! DEC Alpha Series OS: Win7x64; OSX; SuSe Linux; RedHat~~


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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2012 1:08 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 09, 2012 2:17 pm
Posts: 3
Location: Cool, California
Okay, thanks - I'll give it a try. I can always return the kit if I don't need it.

Thanks for taking the time to explain all of that!

Jason


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