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Daniel ~ 23rd August, 2006 08:26 PM

W2K, Windows RAID
I have two 80 gig drives I want to RAID after the fact of W2K installation, I want to use them as a back up for a 300 gig drive.

Isn't there a native RAID in W2K, I think I've come across it, but now can't seem to find it... Am I mistaken or can someone show where it's located?

Gizmo 23rd August, 2006 08:56 PM

Do you want to RAID the disks, or do you want to span them?

I'm assuming you are refering to something like RAID 0, which is properly called disk striping and isn't RAID at all, which Win2K does support. (Win2k also supports RAID, but only RAID 5. You don't have enough drives to make a RAID 5, since it requires a minimum of three identically sized disks.)

Win2K gives you the choice of spanning or striping the drives, and NEITHER of these options is fault tolerant (neither is RAID 0). This means that if a drive is a span or stripe fails, you will lose all of the data on that physical drive (spanning) or all of the data on all of the drives (striping).

Spanning simply 'stacks' the drives; you fill up the first drive, then you fill up the second drive, but the file system takes care of managing what goes where so that it all looks like one drive to the rest of the world.

Striping writes the data to each drive in 'stripes' (usually 64KB or 128KB per stripe), so each drive contains half of the total data.

The advantage to spanning is that, if one drive fails, there is a chance you can still recover useful data from the other drive. However, it is slower than striping. The advantage to striping is that you can read data from and write data to both drives in parallel, so data transfers are theoretically able to happen much faster. However, in striping if you lose any drive in the stripe you lose all of the data.

The process of creating a striped or spanned volume is pretty much the same: first, you have to make each of the disks you want to use in the volume into a dynamic disk (by default, all disks in Win2k are set up as basic disks). To do this, open the Disk Mangement tool in the Computer Management control panel. Select the basic disk you want to upgrade, right-click it, and click 'Upgrade to Dynamic Disk' then follow the instructions on your screen.

Once you have upgraded the basic disks to dynamic disks, you will need to create a spanned or striped volume. Again in the Disk Management tool, right-click on the unallocated space on one of the dynamic disks you want to use, click 'Striped volume' or 'Spanned volume' (depending on what you want to do) and then follow the on-screen instructions.

There is considerable information about this in the Disk Management help.

Daniel ~ 24th August, 2006 02:06 AM

Great! Thanks Gizmo! I want to use them in combination to recive my new disk's back up. No information on them due to past experiments! LOL

I tried my promise Raid card (some how ended up with 4 of them over the years) But Aconis warns that they won't be available Before booting the OS. Which I take to mean I didn't feed a disk to W2K install in the F-6 moment.

So they won't be of much help in the current install... then I remembered Aedan saying a year or so back that W2K did a descent job of raid management... So I went looking for in computer management, but for something that said RAID right out there in the open!...I'm not surprised I didn't find it....Thanks Gizmo!

Daniel ~ 24th August, 2006 02:43 AM

It all went very of course Acronis doesn't see the new H drive...You really do have to keep your sense of humor about these things! LOL

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