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Removeable hard drive

Posted on 2001-06-13
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Last Modified: 2010-04-13
I have a win2k machine and would like to setup a spare ide drive as removable.
This way I can mount the drive to do a backup unmount it and remove it.

Is this possible? how?
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Question by:davidpm
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12 Comments
 
LVL 25

Expert Comment

by:dew_associates
ID: 6186894
David,

The easiest way would be to mount a hard drive tray very similar to the ones used for swappable scsi drives, but for IDE. They run about $70 for a good one, and the cheapy ones can be had for about $40. They mount in a 5 1/4 wide slot in the front of the PC and allow you to shut the machine down, remove the drive and then restart.

http://www.coolerstar.com/hddmoblierack.html

Dennis
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Author Comment

by:davidpm
ID: 6187190
Yes I have the tray and it works fine. I was hoping to be able to mount and unmount the drive like in Unix so I do not have to reboot.
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Expert Comment

by:YingAtt
ID: 6187384
You can do this in W2K (either SCSI or IDE).  However, the removable drive cannot contain the system partition (unless it the removable drive is part of a RAID solution, but that is another story!).  Removable drives are handled via the "Removable Storage" tools.


 
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LVL 25

Expert Comment

by:dew_associates
ID: 6188129
Dave, this will help you with the available removable storage concepts in Windows 2000:

http://www.microsoft.com/windows2000/en/professional/help/default.asp?url=/WINDOWS2000/en/professional/help/sag_RSMconcepts_1.htm

To replicate a Unix like environment, you will need to build a Raid setup, even Raid 0 or 1 will work.
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Author Comment

by:davidpm
ID: 6188559
It does seem possible but when I put in another not-boot non system drive it sets itself up as a regular drive and I see no way to make it removable so I can stop it and take it out then put it back in and restart it.

Even though it is IDE how do I tell it to treat it as removable.
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LVL 25

Expert Comment

by:dew_associates
ID: 6188599
Okay, let's backup a bit.

Since you're using IDE, and I presume that you have read and understand the concepts, before Win2k can handle the device as removable, it must be in a Raid configuration OR the computers Bios must support the removal of a IDE device without going to a fault.
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Author Comment

by:davidpm
ID: 6190605
Dew

That's the conclusion I came to last nite researching on the net. I'm not interested in raid only removable. Do you know of any computer bios that will support what I want to do.
simple backup to hard disk, take disk out, put in 2ed disk for another copy.
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Expert Comment

by:dew_associates
ID: 6191194
I believe that Intel's and Supermicros high end server boards support this, but I haven't confirmed it yet although I will try to do so today. I dug into the Win2000 information last night though and everything that I have found indicates that this can only be done with optical drives such as CD Burners, DAT drives and tape. So it appears that whatever you chose, it will need its own special drivers to accomplish this, presuming that you do not want to pursue Raid.
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Expert Comment

by:YingAtt
ID: 6191250
Is the drive you are attempting to remove an older model?  You might try updating the firmware.  
I have a removable eide hard drive (IBM Adstar) for my laptop -- admittedly it operates from the media bay so plug & pray is involved, but I can eject/inject just like a PCMCIA card.  W2K won't let me boot from it, nor can I make it a dynamic disk, but it certainly works for the purpose you are looking for (I use it for backups of critical data too).
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Author Comment

by:davidpm
ID: 6191489
YingAtt
I belive you are sucessfull because the laptop's bios treats it like a removeable bay.
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Author Comment

by:davidpm
ID: 6241234
I found my own answer.
http://www.softhelp.cc/Swapx.html
These people have a utility that will mount and unmount a hard drive in windows 98. The NT/2000 version is comming soon.
Thanks you all for your ideas
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Moondancer earned 0 total points
ID: 6241544
This question will be moved to the PAQ, points refunded.  Client found solution outside this process.

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