Highly Reliable also provided the High-Rely Drive Manager utility with our hardware setup. This software utility helps solve the problem of Windows assigning the first available drive letter to a newly-attached disk drive. Without this solution, this automatic disk assignment would present itself as a problem if you needed to move or replace drive letter-assigned RAIDPacs amongst the drive bays in the RAIDFrame chassis.
The High-Rely Drive Manager 2.2 Administrative Interface (HRD2ADM) can be used to configure the RAIDFrame drives so that they can consistently keep their assigned drive letter no matter where in the RAIDFrame you mount a RAIDPac.
The HR Drive Manager is a GUI-based configuration tool that gives the user an interface to edit the HRDM2.ini file and restart the back-end Windows service that maintains the updated configuration. All you need is the Windows generated Volume Serial Number for the drive you want to assign the drive letter to. In order to get the serial number, you need to go to the Windows command line interface and run the “dir” command on the drive you want Drive Manager to manage. You’ll see the Volume Serial Number right below the volume label.
My only complaint about using the HR Drive Manager was the lack of instructions on how it works. I didn’t get any supporting documentation, but after some tinkering around, I was able to configure the RAIDPacs and assign letters to them. The help file was a little useful; however I relied on my own experience with earlier versions of the HR Drive Manager to figure the interface out.
Also, if you want to get around the GUI, you can also manually update the HRDM2.ini file and restart the HR service. This direct method was used in the earlier version of the other Highly Reliable product I reviewed in 2007.
To test and confirm that the Drive Manager software works in keeping my assigned drive letters, I swapped around the first and third RAIDPacs and placed them in different bays for good measure. As expected, the drives letters assigned to each RAIDPac stayed the same and no letter reassignment was needed.