What is a dynamic volume?
Prior to figuring out how to create dynamic volumes, it is necessary to know something about this kind of volume. The dynamic volumes exist on the dynamic disk, a physical disk with more flexibility than a basic disk. Different from basic disks using a partition table to keep track of all partitions, the dynamic disk uses a hidden logical disk manager (LDM) to track information about the dynamic volumes on the disk. A dynamic disk can support up to 2000 dynamic volumes per disk, and you can create five types of dynamic volumes:
①Simple volumes — Functions like primary partitions or logical drives on a basic disk.
②Mirrored volumes — Creates an exact copy of data from another volume. It is used for fault tolerance and serves as a backup device in case the primary device fails.
③Striped volumes — Uses the free space from more than one physical hard disk to create a bigger volume. Writes across all other volumes in small blocks and distributes I/O requests across disks to improve disk input/output performance.
④Spanned volumes — Combines areas of unallocated space from multiple disks into one to create a dynamic volume. The unallocated space can be different sizes.
⑤RAID-5 volumes — A fault-tolerant volume that stripes data and parity across three or more disks. Parity is a calculated value used to reconstruct data if one disk fails.
How to create dynamic volumes step by step?
From above, we can know that different dynamic volumes allow you to do so much more than a basic disk. So, you may want to create dynamic volumes. But how to perform it? To make it as easy as possible, we recommend using AOMEI Partition Assistant Server. It provides a professional dynamic disk manager to help manage dynamic disk volumes effectively in all Windows PC and Windows Server operating systems.
Next, we will show you how to create the five different dynamic volumes step by step. Before proceeding, you need to convert basic disk to dynamic disk first, and check out the following notes:
◆Dynamic disks are not supported in Windows 7/8, Vista and XP Home Edition-based computers.
◆All volumes on the same disk must use the same storage type. In other words, there are only basic partitions on a basic disk and dynamic disks only contain dynamic volumes.
◆You can create simple volumes, spanned volumes and striped volumes in all Windows Operating Systems that support dynamic disks, and create all dynamic volumes in Windows Server editions.
◆Mirrored volumes are only available in Windows 7 and Windows Server. You cannot create mirrored volumes or RAID-5 volumes on Windows XP and Windows Vista.
1. Create Simple Volume
Step 1. Install and run AOMEI Partition Assistant Server. Click “Dynamic Disk” to launch Dynamic Disk Manager.
Step 2. Right click the unallocated space and choose “Create Volume”.
Step 3. Choose the “Simple Volume” from the volume type list and click “Next”.
Step 4. Select the destination disks to create simple volume and click "Next".
Step 5. In this window, you can edit volume size as you need and click “Finish”.
Step 6. Back to the main interface, hit on “Commit” to perform the pending operation.
The process of creating simple volume is easier than creating the rest 4 types of dynamic volumes because the stripped volumes, spanned volumes, mirrored volumes are required to be created on at least two disks. Moreover, creating RAID-5 volumes requires at least 3 disks.
2. Create dynamic Spanned/Striped/Mirrored Volumes
The steps are similar with creating Simple Volume, and the difference lies in step 3 where you need to choose “Spanned volume”, “Stripped Volume” and “Mirrored Volume”, and in step 4, you need to choose at least 2 dynamic disks; otherwise the “Next” button will be greyed out and unclickable.
3. Create dynamic RAID-5 Volume
At last, to create dynamic volume for RAID-5 volume, there must be at least three dynamic disks available.
Above is how to create dynamic volumes with AOMEI Partition Assistant Server. Besides, the versatile dynamic disk manager has some other basic and advanced features, including resize dynamic disk, extend dynamic system volume, expand/shrink/move volume, increase RAID-5 volume, striped volume, mirrored volume size, convert dynamic disk to basic without losing data and vice versa, convert GPT disk to basic and vice versa, add drive to RAID, remove drive from RAID and move volume slice, etc.
Tips: Choose the right version according to your requirements
★ AOMEI Partition Assistant Pro Edition is specially designed for business users to manage dynamic disk storage in Windows 7/8/Vista/XP/2000 both 32 bit and 64 bit.
★ AOMEI Partition Assistant Server Edition provides award-winning Software RAID management solutions in Windows 7/8/Vista/XP/2000 and Windows Server 2000/2003/2008/2011/2012/2016/2019.
★ For Enterprise users, AOMEI Partition Assistant Unlimited Edition allows unlimited usage within one company. It is a wise and cost-effective choice.
★ For IT services providers, we recommend AOMEI Partition Assistant Technician Edition.