Performance hit boot from External?


I just had a very unfortunate experience.

Even though I KNOW it is far preferable to do a fresh install, I have over 100 users, and don't use any directory service, and I didn't want to re-enter them all, along with the permissions. So I did an upgrade from Tiger Xserve to Leopard Xserve.
All went very well for about a week, until I had to never did. After attempting fsck -yf, repairing the disk, repairing permissions, and even running out to the Apple store 10 minutes before they closed to buy Disk Warrior, nothing worked. Apple basically said I had to do a fresh install.
LUCKILY FOR ME, I cloned the Tiger Xserve disk first, and just slapped that back in, and restored the files created during that week from the non booting Leopard drive now, attached externally.
I am now performing a fresh install of Leopard Xserve on an external HD attached to a spare mini, and plan to enter all of the users, and passwords there.
(Finally my questions!)
1. If I move this external drive over to the actual Xserver, and boot from it, will it noticeably degrade performance? **We STRICTLY use this server as a file server, no other server functions **
2. Is there a way to export the users, passwords and groups from the Tiger Xserve? (THAT would be just swell.)

Thanks in advance.


I can't answer #2 but for #1, highly unlikely IMHO.

I had a need for more space on a old 10.3 xserve running on a g4 tower, I hooked up a Gaurdian Maximus:

Cheesy name I know but its pretty nice unit. I hooked it up firewire and used it for data only, boot still off of internal drive. Boot time was the same but there was a huge gain in accessing files.


Glad that is working for you (and you're right! It IS a funny name!) but your scenario is the exact opposite if mine. I want to install the Server OS on the external drive and use it only for booting, and the internal drives will continue to be for data only. It looks like there will be no discernable performance degradation if I install the OS on an external Firewire 800 drive.


U.S.D.A. Prime
You can export the users from the Tiger machine using Workgroup Manager.

Highlight all the user accounts, then select from the menubar: Server > Export. The users will be exported to a text file.

When you get Leopard installed, launch Workgroup Manager, then select from the menubar: Server > Import and point it to your exported text file.


Thanks for the reply.
Since my original post, I tried that very technique for the users, and also did for the groups, and everything DID populate to Leopard, but I was told that the Export/Import would not carry along the passwords. About an hour after I did this, I had to break down my office for a new floor(!), so I have not been able to get back to it yet (man, there was a lot of crap in my office!) Even if I have to re-enter the passwords, that would be much better than entering all the users and groups from scratch!
I have another (Windows) server that it turns out has to be done first, so it might be awhile until I return to this project. I will post my results, and thanks again!