Question Accidentally turned Hard disk from Basic to Dynamic

Mazen146

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Apr 16, 2020
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So I have 3 storage devices on my system, a 120GB SSD with my OS on it and 500gb hdd and just two days ago I bought a 1TB hard disks, I moved some stuff around in my PC to the new HDD and ended up with two empty drives "Games (F ) and Disk (H)" on my old 500GB hard disk, so I decided to try to combine them.

So I deleted the H drive in disk management and tried to add it to games by extending it, I went through with it to find my hard disk has turned from basic to Dynamic and my drives turned to yellow colored simple drives on that hard disk

Now I'm not sure the difference between basic and dynamic disks or if this is normal or not, is there a way to turn it back into basic without having to format that drive?



Here's an image of my current disk management window

Thanks in advance!
 
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You extended the F to use the space from the H partition turning the drive into a dynamic drive.

The solution to turn back the disk to basic is to delete all volumes on that empty drive and when all the volumes are deleted you right click on that disk and you choose "Convert back to basic". When it's done you create a volume for the total amount of the drive.

Please don't do this if you have stuff on the drive it will delete everything. And do it to the good drive. Don't oups wrong drive :)

Showing us a screenshot of your disk management would be good to see first before you do this.
 

Mazen146

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Apr 16, 2020
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You extended the F to use the space from the H partition turning the drive into a dynamic drive.

The solution to turn back the disk to basic is to delete all volumes on that empty drive and when all the volumes are deleted you right click on that disk and you choose "Convert back to basic". When it's done you create a volume for the total amount of the drive.

Please don't do this if you have stuff on the drive it will delete everything. And do it to the good drive. Don't oups wrong drive :)

Showing us a screenshot of your disk management would be good to see first before you do this.
Added a screenshot to the post
 

avg9956

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Yup said before, make sure to back up all data first before doing any conversions. It is possible to lose data in the conversion process.


Some notes about basic vs. dynamic disk
https://www.diskpart.com/partition-manager-pro-edition.html

-Basic Disk
Older standard and offers compatibility (MS-DOS), ensures compatibility with Linux
Used by all versions of Windows OS. By default when you initialize any disk in Windows, it is configured as Basic Disk. It is easy to convert Basic to Dynamic disk WITHOUT data loss however if you do the reverse (Converting Dynamic Disk to basic disk), all data will be lost. You can however convert a dynamic disk to basic disk via AOMEI partition Assistant without data loss:

Operations that can be performed:

Size of volume on disk can be adjusted (can be made bigger or smaller)
-If the volume is to be made larger, there needs to be contiguous (uninterrupted) free space after the volume (hence you can't expand if your volume is adjacent to an already occupied volume. You need to be adjacent to unused space).
Create and delete primary and extended partitions.
Create and delete logical drives within an extended partition.
Format a partition and mark it as active.
Boot from basic disk
-Dynamic Disk

Introduced in Microsoft Windows Server 2000 and offers more features. However it has less compatibility with other operating systems and DOES NOT support dual or multi booting.
Dynamic disk and basic disk are two kinds of store type. Both of them support MBR and GPT partition styles. Compared with basic disk, dynamic disk supports more types of volumes, including simple volume, spanned volume,
striped volume, mirrored volumes, and RAID-5 volume. If you have convert disks to dynamic in Windows 10, it means that you can complete some operations that are not allowed on basic disks.

If you want to combine multiple drives together to form one volume (like the btrfs file system), you have to do Dynamic disks.

A dynamic disk is a disk that has been initialized for dynamic storage is called a dynamic disk. It gives more flexibility than a basic disk because it does not use a partition table to keep track of all partitions.
The partition can be extended with dynamic disk configuration. It uses dynamic volumes to manage data. Once a disk has been changed from basic disk to dynamic disk, it requires logical disk manager (developed by Microsoft and included
in Windows). Since it has been so long since Windows Server 2000, Linux has added support for it (Check first if your linux distro supports dynamic disks). This is due to the fact that dynamic disk takes the form of Microsoft's proprietary
format hence, your Linux distro MAY NOT be able to be installed on a dynamic disk.

-In some cases, if you managed to install your Linux distro on a dynamic disk and is supported, you may need to install additional packages to access features of the dynamic disk.

Dynamic disk allows you to perform disk and volume management without having to restarting your computer. Dynamic disk is initialized for dynamic storage.
In Dynamic disks you can create and do the following operations:
For me, I just stick with basic disk and just rely on the existing capacity of my drives.

I set my SSD as my boot drive. This drive doesn't need to have a capacity of 1TB and since SSDs fail over time due to heat, I can easily replace them by buying a cheaper 250GB one. All the boot drive does is to speed up booting and rebooting times of my OS. The only files in that boot drive are Windows files. I set chrome to offload all the downloads and all of my projects/video files in my Hard disk drive and put all of my files, pictures on the hard disk drive. Economical setup with no fear of any data loss, when Windows fails to boot (probably after 3 years) I'd simply replace my SSD.

For my HDD it will have a capacity of >4TB. Going for a 10+TB drive but that may not be within the usual budget of average users. Having a high capacity drive, I eliminate the need for converting to dynamic disks to merge multiple drive's capacities. Highly unlikely HDD drives fail and if they do, there's a higher chance to recover their data compared to failed SSD drives. It is still likely to recover data by using a HDD enclosure, connected via USB to extract data and recover it. It is much more harder (near impossible for an average user) to recover data from a SSD drive - data recovery expert will charge you more for it due to the sheer difficulty of the operation.

It is ill advised to convert your disk to a dynamic disk if you're dual booting OS (i.e. Windows/Linux). This will mess up the boot loader.
 
Yup said before, make sure to back up all data first before doing any conversions. It is possible to lose data in the conversion process.


Some notes about basic vs. dynamic disk
https://www.diskpart.com/partition-manager-pro-edition.html

-Basic Disk


-Dynamic Disk



For me, I just stick with basic disk and just rely on the existing capacity of my drives.

I set my SSD as my boot drive. This drive doesn't need to have a capacity of 1TB and since SSDs fail over time due to heat, I can easily replace them by buying a cheaper 250GB one. All the boot drive does is to speed up booting and rebooting times of my OS. The only files in that boot drive are Windows files. I set chrome to offload all the downloads and all of my projects/video files in my Hard disk drive and put all of my files, pictures on the hard disk drive. Economical setup with no fear of any data loss, when Windows fails to boot (probably after 3 years) I'd simply replace my SSD.

For my HDD it will have a capacity of >4TB. Going for a 10+TB drive but that may not be within the usual budget of average users. Having a high capacity drive, I eliminate the need for converting to dynamic disks to merge multiple drive's capacities. Highly unlikely HDD drives fail and if they do, there's a higher chance to recover their data compared to failed SSD drives. It is still likely to recover data by using a HDD enclosure, connected via USB to extract data and recover it. It is much more harder (near impossible for an average user) to recover data from a SSD drive - data recovery expert will charge you more for it due to the sheer difficulty of the operation.

It is ill advised to convert your disk to a dynamic disk if you're dual booting OS (i.e. Windows/Linux). This will mess up the boot loader.
Do you have any backup plan? If that HDD fail you lose everything. I'd recommend you buy 2 HDD and make a copy of your important files on both so at least you don't have to use any recovery method in the eventuality that 1 of the HDD break down. Don't forget that any drive can fail at any time.

Good backup plan > thinking about your important files when it's too late :)
 

avg9956

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Oh I forgot to mention I have 3x 1TB External HDDs in addition which I use for back ups.
If my HDD fails (usually you get a warning sign such as audible sound being emitted from a drive), you still have that crucial chance to back up your data. It happened to me on my Seagate 2TB drive before. I heard the infamous clicking sound, but I was able to recover my data and had enough time to do so.

In addition after that experience, I bought a HDD enclosure. The reason being is just in case the HDD drive isn't accessible via being connected to the PC, it might be still accessible via USB interface. Nothing hurt to have another extra attempt you can use which is handy.

Hard Disk Drives are more forgiving and tell you signs if they are about to fail unlike SSDs.

SSDs however its either a 1 or a 0. Think binary. It either works, or it doesn't work. It is so much more unforgiving such that I don't trust to put my data there due to the lesser chance of recovery. The only reason why I would vouch for SSD is to utilize its blazing speeds which would be beneficial for faster boot times. In a productivity or workstation environment, time is money so you're accumulating saved time over time by using SSDs. But for launching games, I personally can bear the extra +10 second wait if I load the game from a HDD rather than a SSD. Its not a deal breaker to me.

But I would still attest to the durability of hard drives, even though they're slower than SSDs. You can also get as much as 18TB capacity without the problem of overheating whereas for SSDs , it is hard to increase its capacity as you'd also increase the number of NAND flash chips present given such a small printed circuit board area available. This would in turn of course, increase its heat signature and lessen its longevity in the long run, because you've basically added more heat producing components to the PCB of the SSD.

I also personally have a Samsung 500GB Hard Disk drive that's over 10 years old and its still working normally today. SMART metrics indicate that the drive is still in good condition. I've used that drive for over 10 years straight as my boot drive, never abused it though with too much writes/reads. On the other hand, I have yet to experience any of my SSDs last longer than 3 years. I do see the fair occasion of people concerned about the heat signatures of SSDs be it SATA SSD or M.2 NVMe SSD. Its mainly due to the heat output, which inevitably you can't really escape unless you do some serious cooling on the controller (such as water block cooling it).

For me, newer technologies need to prove their worth before being able to confidently attest to their longevity. HDDs have been around longer than SSDs and yes some do fail, but ultimately I would say its much more forgiving in terms of recovery with HDDs compared to SSDs.

And to top it all of that, with PCI-E 5.0, it would be interesting to see how thermals get managed on future SSDs. The faster the controller's write speeds, the more heat is produced. Its just how it is. Maybe it would come to a point that water cooling M.2 NVMe SSDs may be mandatory once they near PCI-E 5.0 speed limit.
 

USAFRet

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Oh I forgot to mention I have 3x 1TB External HDDs in addition which I use for back ups.
If my HDD fails (usually you get a warning sign such as audible sound being emitted from a drive), you still have that crucial chance to back up your data. It happened to me on my Seagate 2TB drive before. I heard the infamous clicking sound, but I was able to recover my data and had enough time to do so.
Hard drives can fail instantly, just like SSD's.
And physical drive fail is not the only pathway to data loss.

Relying on an HDD to tell you it is dying is a losing game.
 

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