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Best way to use removable hard disk caddies

Posted on 2005-05-09
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Last Modified: 2010-04-14
We use IDE disks in caddies to build customer-specific data, and then we can swap them in and out to support a particular customer. The problem is, we lose the shares on the disks when they are changed. What's the best way to swap disks around? Do Windows Server 2000 and 2003 have any nice features to make it easier?

By the way, we power off while changing disks!
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Question by:crescendo
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by:JConchie
ID: 13960429
Some questions:  do these drives contain the primary partition (ie: the OS?) or are they just data drives?  Are apps installed on the drives?

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by:crescendo
ID: 13960453
Hi

No, the OS drive is fixed, the removable drives are just data. Though we are thinking about swapping the C: drives and apps too at some point.
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by:JConchie
ID: 13960695
Just to make sure I understand whats going on.....why are you swapping out the data drives?
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by:JConchie
ID: 13960731
If the problem is that, when you put the caddie drive in, users on desktops loose the mapped drive they have on the drives.   If that's the case, after you install it, you need to ensure that the new drive is using the same drive letter as the old one, that it is shared out with the same share name and permissions as the old one.

Is the data on the new drive the same as on the old drive?
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by:crescendo
ID: 13960919
We support several customers, so we keep their data on the caddies, then when we do testing or support we can use their data.

The data structure is the same on all caddies, e.g. a \DATA folder shared as DATA etc. Each drive will have some unique folders below the shared folders.

I was going to write a batch file or script to re-share and re-map the drives, but I just wondered if W2K upwards had any neat features to save me the work.
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by:JConchie
ID: 13961014
If you are removing the caddy to do testing, then reinstalling it in the same machine, windows is going to recognize it as a new drive....But even if it gives the drive the same letter, it is going to lose the shares.....and the best way to cure that is a simple login script that maps the drives when the user logs in.
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JConchie earned 2000 total points
ID: 13961039
Duh...not thinking straight here this morning :-)  ....the problem is not the drive mapping on the user's end....it is the re-creation of the share on the caddie drive when it is reinstalled....and that you need to do manually....but it is a matter of seconds....a minute or two if you need to restrict permissions on the share.  No automated way to do that in W2K, unfortunately.
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by:crescendo
ID: 13961877
Thanks, it was worth asking!
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