Live restore large volume to new OS on different server?

Here's the scenario, I want to see if I'm thinking straight here:

I have a file server with a very large data partition of almost 5 TB.  It's running Windows Storage Server 2008 and getting low on physical space so I want to move the data to something more modern, specifically Server 2012 R2. The server name needs to stay the same as the old one because our document management software depends on UNC paths and it's not easy to change.

My plan is to create a new 2012 VM on different hardware, turn off the existing 2008 server, name the 2012 server the same as the old 2008 one and assign the same IP, and install the RR agent.  Then I'd kick off a Live Recovery for the data partition, thereby keeping downtime to a minimum so users can access the data even while it takes days to restore.  Is there any reason that would not work?

Assuming that plan works, what happens after the restore? Does RR take a full base image of this huge server, or is it smart enough to know only the C: drive changed and the D: drive is just an incremental backup?

Thank you in advance for any thoughts and advice.

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  • I think a live restore would work like that but "seeding" the volume with robocopy like Emte suggested is pretty common practice. I live restored a heavy use server in production and no one every was the wiser. It does copy everything from the recovery point regardless of what is still there in the volume you are recovering to. I had hoped it would only do changed data but it does it all.

    I think you will get a new snapshot for sure with new hardware regardless of how much data changed.

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