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Disk Magagement wants to make simple volume on a Basic Disk?!.

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September 13, 2010 2:31:07 AM

I've just installed Windows 7. I'm using a new large hdd, so I created a 30Gb partition and installed the OS on it. Now I've booted Windows, and I want to partition the remainder of the hdd, so I've opened Disk Management. It shows Disk 0 as a Basic disk, but when I right-click the unallocated portion, the menu only includes "New Simple Volume." But simple volumes are only for Dynamic disks. What's up?

For your help, many heartfelt thanks.

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a b $ Windows 7
a c 104 G Storage
September 14, 2010 3:00:49 PM

hagen79 said:
I've just installed Windows 7. I'm using a new large hdd, so I created a 30Gb partition and installed the OS on it. Now I've booted Windows, and I want to partition the remainder of the hdd, so I've opened Disk Management. It shows Disk 0 as a Basic disk, but when I right-click the unallocated portion, the menu only includes "New Simple Volume." But simple volumes are only for Dynamic disks. What's up?

For your help, many heartfelt thanks.


Hi there,

A "simple volume" means the volume is on a single physical disk, (rather than 2 or more physical drives in multiple different possible configuratioins)
So when you initially set up a HDD, in the BIOS you can choose the drive to be a Basic Disk, or if you have multiplel drives, a Dynamic Disk (RAID or JBODs).

A Basic Disk can have 4 Partitions, all on the same physical HDD. The partitions are called "simple volumes" because they live on a single HDD.
A Dynamic Disc can be set up in 3 different ways, a simple volume (1 HDD), a spanned volume (on 2 or more HDDs) or stripped volume (spread equally across 2 or more HDDs)

So when you initially set up your single HDD, the BIOS set it up as a single Basic Disk (only choice for 1 drive). When you installed the OS on a partition on the HDD, it was set up as a Simple Volume (on the single HDD). The unallocated (raw) space can be partitioned in 3 more partitions (or 2 + an extended for logical drives), and since the partition(s) will be on that single HDD, it is called a "Simple Volume".

So, after all that, a "Simple Volume" can be on either a Basic or Dynamic Disk. Hope that's understandable and helpful.
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September 14, 2010 4:58:01 PM

Quick question John since we're on topic, can I span a 72000 rpm sata HDD with a 52000 rpm pata HDD? if so, would that affect performance in a negative way?
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a b $ Windows 7
a c 104 G Storage
September 14, 2010 6:24:36 PM

wolf1e said:
Quick question John since we're on topic, can I span a 72000 rpm sata HDD with a 52000 rpm pata HDD? if so, would that affect performance in a negative way?


Hi there,

By spanning, you take 2 (or more) HDD's and create 1 partition across the physical drives. It backwards to partitioning, where you take 1 physical HDD and make 2 (or more) logical sections on it. When you have 2 drives of different rotational speeds and different transfer speeds, it will operate at the slowest HDD, the PATA 5200 RPM. Yes it will affect the speed. So for Spanning, Mirroring, or Striping, it's best to use exactly the same drive specs.

Interesting question. However the SATA 6Gb/s 1GB 7200 RPM HDD's (NewEgg, Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive)are $89, and 3Gb/s HDD's are $79, so you have a new, large, fast, single HDD you don't have to link together in the BIOS. Worth considering.
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a b $ Windows 7
a c 353 G Storage
September 15, 2010 3:15:03 PM

Simple = primary/active, did away with Extended partition (uSoft dumbing down).

With single HDDs, The "simple" replaced/Removed the option of Primary and Extended partition types. I think simple is basically the same as primary. The only real differnce is 1) must be primary to be bootable (install operating system on) and 2) the way drive letters are assigned.

Example (two drive system/4 partitions)
Simple: Drive 0 two partions, = Drive C and D
Drive 1 two partions = Drive E and F
primary/Extended
Drive letters assigned C= Boot partition. Drive D is 2nd Primary partition even if it is on a 2nd HDD. . Eample, If drive 0 has a primary and an extended partition and you have a 2nd drive (drive 1 and it has a primary partition Then this becomes D and the Extended partition on drive 0 becomes E. I prefer this, but drive lettering on a dual boot sytem with two HDD ( 4 partitions can be confusing as drive letters switch arround dependent on which OS is booted. Reason You need to NAME them with good names


With the "simple" method all partitions are "Primary" and the only letters switched are The "C" drive and the Partition with the 2nd operating system when booting to 2nd operating system.
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September 15, 2010 4:07:53 PM

John_VanKirk said:
Hi there,

By spanning, you take 2 (or more) HDD's and create 1 partition across the physical drives. It backwards to partitioning, where you take 1 physical HDD and make 2 (or more) logical sections on it. When you have 2 drives of different rotational speeds and different transfer speeds, it will operate at the slowest HDD, the PATA 5200 RPM. Yes it will affect the speed. So for Spanning, Mirroring, or Striping, it's best to use exactly the same drive specs.


Thanks for your reply! I was planning to span two different hdd's that I mentioned before but I see is not worth it as far as performance goes, good info to keep in mind =)
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September 22, 2010 12:31:35 AM

Best answer selected by hagen79.
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September 22, 2010 12:32:09 AM

Thanks, everyone, for your help!
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