Category Archives: church

Merge Free Space on Dell PowerVault MD3000i

I recently ran into an issue while trying to manipulate some virtual disks on our MD3000i SAN at GCC. I know lots of other CITRT folks either have one of these “inexpensive” SANs, so I thought I’d document this here. Apologies to all my friends and family who have been haggling me to post something NON-TECHIE, but this is NOT that post.

A quick bit of background: We’re using our MD3000i strictly as media file archive and really want the SAN to be one really large LUN/partition so that the space is the most flexible. When we first implemented the MD3000i, we were limited to 2TB per LUN/partition and were splitting things up by year. 2007 was about 1.8TB of data and with one month remaining in 2008, the 2008 LUN was already full. You can see where we were already having an issue with 2TB limit.

Dell recently released new firmware for the MD3000i that supports a LUN size of larger than 2TB. I applied that before leaving the office on Friday and quickly started deleting the virtual disks that didn’t have any real data on them yet so I could create a new, larger partition and begin moving data around. Much to my surprise, I saw this in the Dell Modular Disk Storage Manager:

The stupid controllers left the Free Space from the virtual disks I removed in their respective physical locations on the disk. This was stupid, so I Tweeted about it. I exchanged a few tweets back and forth with Derek Mangrum and he hooked me up! He had ran in to the same issue before and sent over a rather handy list of commands he’d used on his own array as well as the SMcli reference guide from SANtricity, who apparently is the actual manufacturer of the Dell-rebranded MD3000i. I had to tweak the command a little because we have dual controllers, but this is the final recipe:
C:\Program Files\Dell\MD Storage Manager\client>SMcli controller_0_IP¬† controller_1_IP -p yourarraypassword -c “start diskGroup [1] defragment;”

If you only have a single-controller, you can eliminate the second IP and be sure to replace “yourarraypassword” with uh, your array password. Also, if you have more than one diskGroup, replace the 1 after diskGroup with the diskGroup you wish to “defragment.” And yes, the brackets around the diskGroup number MUST STAY or you’ll get syntax errors.

For what it’s worth, I despise the SMcli tool. I’d much rather have a REAL command-line interface directly on the array controllers. My opinions aside, SMcli is insanely powerful and you can do a lot more through that tool than you can through the Dell MDSM GUI tool.In a few days, I’ll post again about how to use SMcli to expand a LUN. Stay tuned!

My Wife Said “w00t”

I love my wife. No, really… I do. She wrote a quick blog post yesterday titled “w00t!” and as you can see, she even spelled it properly! I’m insanely proud of her, not just for being a geek and using one of my favorite words, but for completing the Masters of Business Administration (MBA) program at Gardner-Webb with a 4.0 GPA! Yes, thats right. My wife is also a genius.

We’re approaching the final days before our big move. As of last Wednesday, the 23rd, our house is no longer OUR house. God has just done amazing things in the last several months to make this move not just possible, but easy. When we started exploring the feasability of moving to the Granger area, one of our long-time friends, Heather, said we should talk with her before putting our house on the market. We did talk to her and she agreed to buy our house! We never spoke to a realtor or anything. Absolutely amazing!

I’d say we already have about 80% of our stuff packed and ready to be loaded on to the truck, which arrives about 48-hours from now. My slightly OCD wife (who I love – see above!) is going a tiny little bit nuts because she loves organization and lists and knowing where things are and what still needs to be done. She can’t help it though, she gets it honest (love you too Mom Miller!).

Our last day at work is Wednesday of this week and we’ll have all day Thursday and Friday to finish loading the 28-foot trailer before ABF comes to pick it up and haul it to South Bend for us. Speaking of work – if any of you in the Michiana area have leads on a job for Bonnie, PLEASE get in touch with one of us via our blogs or on Twitter (@wantmoore or @gotmoore). Remember, she is graduating in a few days with an MBA and a 4.0. Surely theres a market for her to serve in the greater South Bend area.

Please do keep us in your prayers. The next week to 10 days is going to be insane for us – sure to be full of busyness and emotion. I saw something in the local Christian bookstore that will surely be my anchor over the next several weeks – “Where God leads, He will provide.” We know without a single ounce of doubt that God has called us to move to South Bend and be a part of the GCC family and we are definitely excited about what the future holds.

Moving On – Joining GCC

I am absolutely, 100% pumped to finally be able to share some incredible news with the blogopshere. I’m joining the IT Team at Granger Community Church! I couldn’t be more excited to work with Jason Powell, Ed Buford, and Matt Metzger. I’ll be the “IT Specialist” – primarily responsible for help desk, but also assisting Ed with network-related things, handling phone system maintenance, and the scariest thing on the job description “other duties as assigned by the IT Director.”

So yes, for those who can’t read between the lines, we’re leaving the comforts of Western North Carolina winters and heading north sometime around August 4th. There’s a ton of emotions involved in leaving behind our family, friends, and everything else we know and love about North Carolina, but God has truly had his hand in this from the very beginning. He has confirmed in at least 100 ways that this is definitely¬† our next step in serving Him. Bonnie and I both should be blogging about some of those things soon.

The whole GCC team has been incredible through this entire process. We had an amazing interview weekend in Granger a month or so ago and can’t thank the team enough for what you’ve already done to make us feel welcomed and a part of the family. Jason and his wife Kim have truly gone above and beyond the call of duty and opened their home to us on multiple occassions as we’ve visited the area. Not only do we feel like we’re joining the GCC team, we even feel like we’re an extension of the Powell family! Jason and Kim – we certainly owe you a big, public thank you (and probably some free child care at some point). Thanks a million times over for being so welcoming and supportive during this entire process – I’m not sure we could’ve done it without you!

As I said earlier, we’ll both be writing more about this in the coming weeks leading up to our move, but in the meantime, we could sure use your prayers. Thanks!

Almost Famous

A couple of months ago, I was contacted by a reporter, Liz Wolgemuth, from US News and World Report and asked about doing an interview for a story she was working on. Turns out, she was researching for a piece on personal finance and debt elimination and ran across my blog and a post or two talking about Dave Ramsey and our involvement at church. I was happy to oblige. We talked on several different occassions and they even sent a photographer out to church for one of our FPU meetings.

At the time, I was under the impression the story was going to be published in a special issue of the print version of the magazine targeted at 20-somethings concerning their finances. I hadn’t heard from Liz in several weeks, so I decided to hop over to the US News and World Report website last night and much to my surprise, I found the article Churches Tackle Worshipers’ Money Management. I’m pleased enough with how it turned out. I’ve not always had positive experiences when dealing with reporters (the local newspaper here loves to take quotes out of context), but Liz was top-notch and the article conveyed exactly what I wanted it to from me. It’s also quite staggering to see our church and effort with Financial Peace University mentioned in the same article as Willow Creek and their Good Sense program.

On a more personal note, Bonnie and I will have some more news to share soon regarding our trip towards financial peace. Stay tuned!

Moscow 2008 Photos Online

It took many hours to upload, even with the full 3Mbps upstream link at the office, but I managed to get my photos from Moscow uploaded to Flickr late Monday afternoon. There are 581 photos in the set, so even if you put the slideshow mode on “Fast” you’ll be there a while.

I did some experimenting with my Canon PowerShot S410 this time. Almost all of the shots were done in Manual-mode, a big departure from always shooting in Auto. The main reason I did this was so I could use the “Vivid” color setting after reading about it on a site that David Szpunar linked to in the CITRT IRC channel. Even though I was using Manual, most other settings remained on Auto except for a few of the night-time shots which required some tweaking and the up-close shots which I shot in Macro mode.

Enjoy the pics!

Moscow Bound

We’re minutes away from going to bed. We’ll be waking up around 3:30AM on Thursday morning to head to church to meet up with our mission team and leave for the airport. Yes, that time will probably already have passed by the time you read this. This will be our third trip to Moscow, the previous two in March of 2005 and October of 2006. Those if you quick with math will see that Crestview is averaging sending a team about every 18-months to assist with the church plant in the Golovinski region of Northern Moscow.

We’re super excited about the work God is doing there. If you go back and read this Four Things post from two years ago, you’ll see that one of the things I wanted to do before I die was “Attend church in the Golovinski region of Moscow, Russia.” That may sound rather simple, but two years ago, there was no Protestant, Christ-following church in the region. In October of 2006, I did it. Interestingly enough, I think I’m more excited to go back this time and take part in a much more mature body of believers.

Now the sort of sad part – I’ll likely be 100% off the grid for the next eleven days. No phone, no email, no #citrt, no internet of any kind. If you need to get in touch, I highly suggest you do it before 4:00 PM EST which is the time I’m scheduled to board the flight to Moscow @ JFK in New York. Otherwise, pray for a divine message to be delivered to me.

We’ll be back home on Monday night, March 31st and I’ll have a quick one-day turnaround before heading to Oklahoma City for Spring Church IT RoundTable. These next two-and-a-half weeks are going to be one tremendous experience and I can’t wait to see what God has in store for me, Bonnie, and the rest of our mission team. I hope you will all be praying for God to move in a mighty way in Moscow.

Wings

Yesterday ended pretty well. The food at Buffalo Wild Wings was great – about 25 or so folks showed up. Got to meet Dave and Ed in-person finally and I think everyone had a good time.
wings evidence
Dave, Jason, and Ed might not fare so well in the Biggest Loser Contest if last night was any indicator…

If you happen to be one of the two or three people who follow my Twitter, you know that American managed to lose my luggage somewhere in the shuffle of me getting bumped to earlier flights, but when we got back to the hotel, American had been here with my bags, so it was a great day for flying for me. American is my new favorite airline, hands down.

Just finished up breakfast with Cisco and Nancy and we’re about to head over to Northwoods to check-in for the training. More to come later, specifically, photos of the training materials. You will be shocked.

Church IT RoundTable Resources

Tony Dye has been after me this week to put together a “definitive guide to all things Church IT on the web” and it’s kind of hard to turn down such a nice guy.

A good place to start is the “official” Church IT RoundTable website – www.citrt.org. When formal plans for a RoundTable have been made, there will be information posted there. Also, the contents of this post will be mirrored there. Think of it as a portal page for Church IT.

The Church IT RoundTable world is really all about community, and that’s what all of these resources are built around.

ITDiscuss.org

There is just a wealth of information on the forum/mailing list. The two are actually linked together, so you can choose which format you’d like to use to participate. The wiki is really still in it’s infancy, but the content that is there is really quite useful.

Also on ITDiscuss.org:

Interactive Stuff:

The Podcast is the first and third Thursday of every month at 2:00 PM EST. I always look forward to Podcast Thursdays. Being a part of the live, interactive talkcast is extremely cool and no matter what your level of technical interest, I can guarantee you will learn something here.

Blogs – This is not meant to be an exhaustive list, but if you’re only going to pick a few Church IT blogs to read, I’d highly recommend these four:

We also have a CITRT Planet aggregator that pulls posts from quite a few blogs, including this one. For a much more complete list of Church IT blogs, check out Clif’s blogroll in the sidebar at Appian Way.

Social Web Stuff:

Added 2008-01-10:
Church IT Survey