Friday, March 26, 2010

Disk Management(continued):- Changing disk storage type

 Sorry for missing out on this in the last post.
And thank you anshul for reminding this through comments.

There are two types of disk storage :-basic and dynamic


  • Basic Disk Storage:-
Basic storage uses normal partition tables supported by MS-DOS, Microsoft Windows 95, Microsoft Windows 98, Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition (Me), Microsoft Windows NT, Microsoft Windows 2000, Windows Server 2003 and Windows XP. A disk initialized for basic storage is called a basic disk. A basic disk contains basic volumes, such as primary partitions, extended partitions, and logical drives. Additionally, basic volumes include multidisk volumes that are created by using Windows NT 4.0 or earlier, such as volume sets, stripe sets, mirror sets, and stripe sets with parity. Windows XP does not support these multidisk basic volumes. Any volume sets, stripe sets, mirror sets, or stripe sets with parity must be backed up and deleted or converted to dynamic disks before you install Windows XP Professional.
  • Dynamic Disk Storage
Dynamic storage is supported in Windows XP Professional, Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003. A disk initialized for dynamic storage is called a dynamic disk. A dynamic disk contains dynamic volumes, such as simple volumes, spanned volumes, striped volumes, mirrored volumes, and RAID-5 volumes. With dynamic storage, you can perform disk and volume management without the need to restart Windows.

Now to convert it to dynamic type:-
  • Open the Disk management window(follow the last post click here)
  • right click on area as shown in picture and select convert to dynamic disk.
 Now follow the instructions to convert to dynamic type.

After you convert a basic disk to a dynamic disk, local access to the dynamic disk is limited to Windows 2000 and Windows XP Professional.

Conversion can be done for whole disk and not for individual partition.
Same is true for back conversion to basic type.
You must first delete all dynamic volumes on the disk and then convert the dynamic disk back to a basic disk. If you want to keep your data, you must first back up the data or move it to another volume.

Note:- For normal users with no use of RAID ,i'll suggest them to use basic type only as it gives better chance of data recovery in case something goes wrong.

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