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What is the max size for a disk in server 2012 R2

Posted on 2016-08-26
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Last Modified: 2016-08-31
Trying to find out what the max size for a disk is in server 2012 R2?
Is it still 2TB or can you create a disk larger than 2TB and if so how do set it up?
There seems to be a  of different options on this.
I need to setup a drive that is going to be around 2.5 to 3TB
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Question by:vmich
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15 Comments
 
LVL 96

Accepted Solution

by:
Lee W, MVP earned 2000 total points
ID: 41771803
The max size of a BOOT disk for ANY Windows Operating System that is installed on a server that does not support UEFI is 2 TB.  If the the system DOES support UEFI it is far larger and depends on the cluster size you select.

For VHDs, VHD is limited to 2TB, VHDX is limited to 64 TB.

All Windows operating systems still supported can setup volumes of 2.5-3TB - or larger - however, the disk type must be GPT.  All computers support GPT for data disks, but only UEFI systems support GPT for boot disks.
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Author Comment

by:vmich
ID: 41771815
Data disk is what I need to create in that size range..
So I guess with 2012 R2  have to set up the new server and then make the disk GPT to get beyond the 2GB limitation correct?
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LVL 96

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 41771842
Correct.
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 41771843
As opposed to MBR.
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Author Comment

by:vmich
ID: 41771858
understood
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LVL 88

Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 41771907
But don't forget, the OS disk must be separate from the data disk. Many people believe you can partition a disk and have the first partition MBR, and the other GPT. That isn't the case. MBR or GPT applies to the complete disk and not partitions.
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Author Comment

by:vmich
ID: 41772060
Ok so I the server that I need the larger disk on, is a vm (VMware)
So if I would build a new vm (server 2012 R2) and then remove the disk from the old vm, can I setup the new vm and still setup GPT and add the disk back?
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LVL 88

Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 41772074
If you install a new VM in ESXi, and your host server supports UEFI, you can install it in UEFI mode and install straight to a GPT disk. But in my point of view you should always separate the OS from the data. So what I would do is install the new VM to a small MBR or GPT virtual disk, then add a 2nd virtual GPT Disk that is large for the data.
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Author Comment

by:vmich
ID: 41772091
Yes I was going to create a separate disk for the OS (100Gb) and then I need to setup a 2.5-3TB disk for the data. But it has to be GPT.
So I guess I am confused on how I will get the disk back on the new vm and have them be GPT
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LVL 88

Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 41772106
You just need to open Windows diskmanagement, then right click on the new 3.5TB or whatever disk in the space where it says something like Disk 1, with the disk icon, and then select "Convert to GPT Disk" After that you can partition and format it.
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LVL 96

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 41772108
If you're creating a new virtual disk, create it.  Add it to the VM, then once in the VM, you make it a GPT instead of MBR.  If you're passing the disk through (Hyper-V can do this, I assume ESX can), then I don't know if you need to do anything in ESX, but once the disk is seen by the guest VM, you can make it GPT.
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Author Comment

by:vmich
ID: 41772162
can I do this even thought the disk are running on a san or does that not matter
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LVL 88

Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 41772168
That doesn't matter.
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LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:Gerald Connolly
ID: 41772688
The maximum size of a NTFS volume can be
16 ExaBytes
= 16,000 PetaBytes
= 16,000,000 TeraBytes

Other limits apply
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LVL 1

Author Closing Comment

by:vmich
ID: 41778005
2TB disk
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