Basic and Dynamic Disks

Microsoft® Windows® 2000 offers two types of disk storage configurations: basic disk and dynamic disk Basic disk is similar to the disk structures used in Microsoft® Windows NT®. Dynamic disk is new to Windows 2000. By default, Windows 2000 initializes hard disks as basic disk.

The Disk Administrator tool found in Microsoft® Windows NT® version 4.0 and earlier has been replaced in Windows 2000 with the Disk Management snap-in for Microsoft Management Console (MMC) Disk Management supports both basic and dynamic disks. You can use the upgrade wizard in Disk Management to convert hard disks to dynamic disks.

You can use both basic and dynamic disks on the same computer system, and with any combination of file systems (file allocation table [FAT], including FAT16 and FAT32, and NTFS file system). However, all volumes on a physical disk must be either basic or dynamic.

You can upgrade from basic to dynamic storage at any time. Any changes made to your disk are immediately available in Windows 2000 — you do not need to quit Disk Management to save them or restart your computer to implement them. However, if you upgrade the startup disk to dynamic, or if a volume or partition is in use on the disk that you are upgrading, the computer must be restarted for the upgrade to succeed.