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Create a spanned volume

Updated: January 21, 2005

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

To create a spanned volume

Using the Windows interface

  1. Open Computer Management (Local).

  2. In the console tree, click Computer Management (Local), click Storage, and then click Disk Management.

  3. Right-click the unallocated space on one of the dynamic disks where you want to create the spanned volume, and then click New Volume.

  4. In the New Volume Wizard, click Next, click Spanned, and then follow the instructions on your screen.

Notes

  • To perform this procedure on a local computer, you must be a member of the Backup Operators group or Administrators group on the local computer, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. To perform this procedure remotely, you must be a member of the Backup Operators group or Administrators group on the remote computer. If the computer is joined to a domain, members of the Domain Admins group might be able to perform this procedure. As a security best practice, consider using Run as to perform this procedure. For more information, see Default local groups, Default groups, and Using Run as.

  • To open Computer Management, click Start, click Control Panel, double-click Administrative Tools, and then double-click Computer Management.

  • You can create spanned volumes on dynamic disks only.

  • You need at least two dynamic disks to create a spanned volume.

  • You can extend a spanned volume onto a maximum of 32 dynamic disks.

  • Spanned volumes cannot be mirrored.

  • Spanned volumes are not fault tolerant.

Using a command line

  1. Open Command prompt.

  2. Type:

    diskpart

  3. At the DISKPART prompt, type:

    list disk

    Make note of the disk number of the disk where you want to create a simple volume.

  4. At the DISKPART prompt, type:

    create volume simple [size=n] [disk=n]

  5. At the DISKPART prompt, type:

    list volume

    Make note of the number of the simple volume you want to extend onto another disk.

  6. At the DISKPART prompt, type:

    select volumen

    Selects the simple volume, n, you want to extend onto another disk.

  7. At the DISKPART prompt, type:

    list disk

    Make note of the number of the disk that you want to extend the simple volume onto.

  8. At the DISKPART prompt, type:

    extend [size=n] [disk=n]

    Extends the selected volume onto disk n, and make the extension size=n megabytes (MB) in size.

 

Value Description

list disk

Displays a list of disks and information about them, such as their size, amount of available free space, whether the disk is a basic or dynamic disk, and whether the disk uses the master boot record (MBR) or GUID partition table (GPT) partition style. The disk marked with an asterisk (*) has focus.

create volume simple

Creates a simple volume. After you create the volume, the focus automatically shifts to the new volume.

size= n

The size of the volume in megabytes (MB). If no size is given, the new volume takes up the remaining free space on the disk.

disk= n

The dynamic disk on which to create the volume. If no disk is given, the current disk is used.

list volume

Displays a list of basic and dynamic volumes on all disks.

select volume

Selects the specified volume, where n is the volume number, and gives it focus. If no volume is specified, the select command lists the current volume with focus. You can specify the volume by number, drive letter, or mount point path. On a basic disk, selecting a volume also gives the corresponding partition focus.

extend

Extends the volume with focus into next contiguous unallocated space. For basic volumes, the unallocated space must be on the same disk as, and must follow (be of higher sector offset than) the partition with focus. A dynamic simple or spanned volume can be extended to any empty space on any dynamic disk. Using this command, you can extend an existing volume into newly created space.

If the partition was previously formatted with the NTFS file system, the file system is automatically extended to occupy the larger partition. No data loss occurs. If the partition was previously formatted with any file system format other than NTFS, the command fails with no change to the partition.

You cannot extend the current system or boot partitions.

disk= n

The dynamic disk on which to extend the volume. An amount of space equal to size=n is allocated on the disk. If no disk is specified, the volume is extended on the current disk.

size= n

The amount of space, in megabytes (MB), to add to the current partition. If you do not specify a size, the disk is extended to take up all of the next contiguous unallocated space.

Notes

  • To perform this procedure on a local computer, you must be a member of the Backup Operators group, Administrators group, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. If the computer is joined to a domain, members of the Domain Admins group might be able to perform this procedure. As a security best practice, consider using Run as to perform this procedure. For more information, see Default local groups, Default groups, and Using Run as.

  • To open a command prompt, click Start, point to All programs, point to Accessories, and then click Command prompt.

  • You can create simple volumes on dynamic disks only.

  • You can extend a volume only if it does not have a file system or if it is formatted using the NTFS file system. You cannot extend volumes formatted using FAT or FAT32.

  • You cannot extend a system volume, boot volume, striped volume, mirrored volume, or RAID-5 volume.

  • You can extend simple or extended volumes that are not system or boot volumes, as long as there is available disk space. This includes volumes created as dynamic volumes or created as basic volumes and then converted to dynamic on Windows XP Professional or Windows Server 2003 operating systems.

  • If you upgraded from Windows 2000 to Windows XP Professional or Windows Server 2003 operating systems, you cannot extend a simple or spanned volume that was originally created as a basic volume and converted to a dynamic volume on Windows 2000.

  • You can extend a simple volume onto additional dynamic disks to create a spanned volume. Spanned volumes cannot be mirrored.

  • If you extend a spanned volume, you cannot delete any portion of it without deleting the entire spanned volume.

  • Simple volumes are not fault tolerant.

  • Simple volumes can only be accessed by Windows 2000, Windows XP Professional, and Windows Server 2003 operating systems. You should create basic volumes on basic disks if the computer also runs MS-DOS, Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows Millennium Edition, Windows NT 4.0, or Windows XP Home Edition because these operating systems cannot access dynamic volumes.

  • For more information about DiskPart, see Related Topics.

Information about functional differences

  • Your server might function differently based on the version and edition of the operating system that is installed, your account permissions, and your menu settings. For more information, see Viewing Help on the Web.

See Also

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