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how to set up software RAID-1 on XP pro

I need to do a mirror between 2 HD's running XP pro using a software-based solution. I searched the web for solutions to this and nothing useful so far, not even in E-E.
Any suggestions will be welcome.
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chachote
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chachote
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1 Solution
 
Da1KingCommented:
'You can create mirrored volumes only on computers running Windows 2000 Server, Windows 2000 Advanced Server, or Windows 2000 Datacenter Server.'

From the Disk Management console help file.  You are going to need to look into a hardware solution.
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daveWillCommented:
software raid-1 isn't in windows XP.  You could look for a cheap hardware card, or you can copy the data from the one hard drive to the other.

you can make a scheduled task to run robocopy once an hour or so, and get most of the data protection of raid-1.  Robocopy is smart enough to only copy the files that change, so after the first time, it'll will run fairly quick.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robocopy
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PUNKYCommented:
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pheidiusCommented:
Ya know there are very cheap cards out now that ould let you do hardware raid. Do you have any expansion slots open. if so what kind?
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Just reiterating what the others have said - you CANNOT do this - further, there is no known third party solution - buy another controller - they are cheap.
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chachoteAuthor Commented:
To All:
Thanks for your comments, I appreciate you took the time to check into this.
I know the manual and several sites say that only server versions support this, but I cannot afford it.
I don't want to rely on hardware solutions since they are somewhat restrictive: you need to have a spare controller in case the current one dies; and you cannot plug the disks to another vendor's controller.

To Punky:
Thanks for the link, it is going in my way. I also read a few articles saying this can be done through some hack, so I'm still willing to try it out. I'll keep you informed.

To daveWill:
Maybe I'll end up using file replication software, such as Acronis True Image, which seems to be good at this, but I leave it as a second option.
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Sorry, you're incorrect.  RAID 1 is a MIRROR.  You can plug any Mirrored disk into any other controller I've ever seen - you can even plug it in to another NON-RAID controller.  A mirror is an EXACT COPY of another disk, constantly kept up-to-date because the data is written at the same time to both disks.  If one disk fails, it's just like any other drive then, without the mirror.  Spend the $20 on a controller and do a hardware RAID.

You are generally correct regarding this if it were a RAID 5 or RAID 0, but Mirrors are simple.
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scrathcyboyCommented:
SOftware RAID in windows XP is called -- "DYNAMIC DISKS" -- it will give you what you want, but you are craazy to use it.  It all depends on byte encryption, and once one sequence of bytes becomes corrupt, as it will eventually do, then ALL the data on your hard disk(s) is gone.  Don;t mess with it.  If you want TRUE RAID 1 mirroring, then buy a motherboard or a RAID controller card that handles RAID 1 mirroring, and run TWO hard disks off that MB or controller in a RAID 1 mirror.  That is the only RELIABLE way to get what you want.
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chachoteAuthor Commented:
leew:
I have to admit you're right, I didn't take it into account, shame on me. Doh!

scratchyboy:
I don't think it's crazy to try this, since server versions have it built-in.

In the end, maybe I'll have to get the RAID controller. Even if it's possible, it's better to move on and stop wasting time. Thanks a lot.
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Not sure what Scrathcyboy is thinking... but a dynamic disk is NOT RAID.  RAID is "Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks" - you can have a SINGLE drive that's dynamic and it's NOT RAID.  What he might be trying to refer to is Disk Spanning - which is NOT RAID, but requires dynamic disks to setup.  Spanning just turns two disks into one (and won't work with the C: drive).  He is right that you don't want to use it, but nothing is "encrypted" - it's just a format of writing to the disk.
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Da1KingCommented:
Actually I hate to be biased but I would recommend points split between myself and DaveWill at the top.  The question was about how to setup software RAID-1 on a Windows XP machine.  However that isn't an option with that operating system which both myself and Dave pointed out.  However LeeW's answer doesn't answer the question so much as provide an alternative solution.
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
I have no problem with a points split that involves DaveWill and Da1King, but based on the user's later comments, I feel I deserve points as well.
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