Dynamic Disks and Storage Spaces

The following tip is excerpted from my book Training Guide: Installing and Configuring Windows Server 2012 from Microsoft Press:

In previous versions of Windows Server, you could use dynamic disks for implementing software RAID 0 or RAID 1 redundancy for both the boot volume and data volumes. Dynamic disks were first introduced in Windows Server 2003 and were implemented using the new Virtual Disk Service (VDS) API included in that platform. Beginning with Windows Server 2012, however, the VDS API was superseded by SMAPI. This means that dynamic disks are now considered deprecated for all usages except mirroring the boot volumes. Storage Spaces should now be used instead of dynamic disks when you need to provide resiliency for data volumes. In addition, the following tools that rely on the VDS APIs should also be considered deprecated:

  • DiskPart command
  • DiskRAID command
  • Disk Management MMC snap-in

Note that you can still use these commands on Windows Server 2012, but they will not work with Storage Spaces or with any SMAPI components or tools. For more information, see:

The above tip was previously published in an issue of WServerNews, a weekly newsletter from TechGenix that focuses on the administration, management and security of the Windows Server platform in particular and cloud solutions in general. Subscribe to WServerNews today by going to http://www.wservernews.com/subscribe.htm and join almost 100,000 other IT professionals around the world who read our newsletter!

Mitch Tulloch is a twelve-time recipient of the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award and a widely recognized expert on Windows Server and cloud computing technologies.  Mitch is also Senior Editor of WServerNews. For more information about him see http://www.mtit.com.


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