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Removing Drive Letters


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From what I've read so far, DrivePool doesn't require the use of drive letters. I've recently added 2 drives to my pool, formatted GPT without drive letters, so I know it works (of course it does). My question is, can I remove the drive letters from 3 other drives I already had in my pool? There are no "shares" on these drives so it shouldn't impact the OS or the WHS software stack, but I'm uncertain about DP itself.

 

Any help would be great!

 

Secondly, it would be nice to be able to provision a new drive directly within the add drive wizard; initialize, format, and mount. The option to add a dedicated pool drive during setup would be nice. A dedicated pool drive would not have a drive letter, but rather mounted to a reparse point directory in a folder on C: (kind of like WHSv1). This would allow an interface free of multiple (useless) drive letters, but still allow access to the file system of each drive.

 

 

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Hi revnull, you can remove drive letters from existing drives in a pool without affecting access to the pool itself.

 

You can also use Windows's Disk Management to mount drive volumes as if they were folders in another drive (e.g. c:\mounts\g -> g:\).

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Instead of removing the drive letters completely, I'd recommend mounted the drives to NTFS folders, that way you can easily run chkdsk on the drives if/when you need to.

 

http://wiki.covecube.com/StableBit_DrivePool_Q4822624

This is basically what you want, but it is a bit more manual... (but simple)

 

As for the Add disk, if it's not initialized or formatted, DrivePool will do that automatically, actually. And the Virtual Disk Service assigns a new drive letter automatically. 

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Interesting, in my resent experience with DP 1.3.7563 on WHS2011 I had to initialize the drive (MBR or GPT) and format it NTFS before it would show up in the DP list of available drives. I’m not sure what I’ve been doing wrong.

 

 As for the mount path, I was just brainstorming. I’m thinking of converting my father-in-law’s WHSv1 install to 2011, but he is completely non-technical and would need “fool-proof” wizards to add new drives.

 

Thanks for you help!

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I'm goign to have to double check DrivePool, but I swear it would..... I could be wrong.... it's be one of those sorts of weeks.

 

As for the mount path, we try to be as "hands off" as we can with your drives. That way, you can use them however you choose.

If you really do want the drives mounted to a path, head to http://stablebit.com/Contact and submit a feature request. 

Otherwise, you could definitely do it manually (in fact, this is what I do, it allows for the system to be very organized, and the drives to be completely accessible).

 

 

As for migrating....

http://wiki.covecube.com/StableBit_DrivePool_Q5463715

That's a guide on how to do it, without moving all your data around. Would take less than 30 minutes to do all of it (give or take), instead of days...

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I just tried removing the drive letters for all of my pooled drives and ended up with fairly chronic "ntfs errors" where there were numerous event log errors stating that the ntfs file structure was corrupt or errors were found and were repaired.

 

I should add that this is on Windows Server 2012 Essentials.

 

This is an example of the errors I am now seeing.   They are appearing even after restoring drive letters to all of the drives...

 

Log Name:      System
Source:        Ntfs
Date:          10/23/2013 10:07:19 PM
Event ID:      55
Task Category: None
Level:         Error
Keywords:      
User:          SYSTEM
Computer:      Skeeter-HS1.SKEETERSSPOT.local
Description:
A corruption was discovered in the file system structure on volume U:.

The exact nature of the corruption is unknown.  The file system structures need to be scanned online.

Event Xml:
<Event xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/win/2004/08/events/event">
  <System>
    <Provider Name="Ntfs" Guid="{DD70BC80-EF44-421B-8AC3-CD31DA613A4E}" />
    <EventID>55</EventID>
    <Version>0</Version>
    <Level>2</Level>
    <Task>0</Task>
    <Opcode>0</Opcode>
    <Keywords>0x8000000000000000</Keywords>
    <TimeCreated SystemTime="2013-10-24T03:07:19.551471500Z" />
    <EventRecordID>4721</EventRecordID>
    <Correlation />
    <Execution ProcessID="4" ThreadID="628" />
    <Channel>System</Channel>
    <Computer>Skeeter-HS1.SKEETERSSPOT.local</Computer>
    <Security UserID="S-1-5-18" />
  </System>
  <EventData>
    <Data Name="DriveName">U:</Data>
    <Data Name="DeviceName">\Device\HarddiskVolume13</Data>
    <Data Name="CorruptionState">0x1c</Data>
    <Data Name="HeaderFlags">0x802</Data>
    <Data Name="Severity">Critical</Data>
    <Data Name="Origin">File System Driver</Data>
    <Data Name="Verb">Force Proactive Scan</Data>
    <Data Name="Description">The exact nature of the corruption is unknown.  The file system structures need to be scanned online.
</Data>
    <Data Name="Signature">0xe2b3f0fb</Data>
    <Data Name="Outcome">Pseudo Verb</Data>
    <Data Name="SampleLength">0</Data>
    <Data Name="SampleData">
    </Data>
    <Data Name="SourceFile">0x42</Data>
    <Data Name="SourceLine">1436</Data>
    <Data Name="SourceTag">345</Data>
    <Data Name="CallStack">Ntfs+0x178e59, Ntfs+0xb9ce1, Ntfs+0x178d6b, ntoskrnl+0x3a65d, ntoskrnl+0xe3c80, ntoskrnl+0x1542c6</Data>
  </EventData>
</Event>

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<p>After more investigation it appears that removing the drive letters may have just been coincidental timing and another change (activating the directIO for scanner to get S.M.A.R.T. to work) may have caused the issues.   Testing now to see.</p>

<p> </p>

<p>Update:  After two hours of testing it was definitely turning on directIo in the scanner config that caused the errors.   Now to try turning off drive letters again to prepare for adding more drives to the pool ;)</p>

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