An Overview of Spanned Volume
A spanned volume can span multiple physical disk drives or be comprised of multiple, non-contiguous volumes on a single disk drive. Spanned volumes avoid many of the limitations inherent in simple volumes. It is a dynamic volume consisting of disk space on more than one physical disk.
Spanned volume allows users to get more data on the disk without using mount points. By combining the multiple unallocated spaces of physical disks into a spanned volume, users can release drive letters for other uses and create a large volume for file system use.
Keep these points in mind when creating spanned volumes:
- You can extend only NTFS volumes or unformatted volumes.
- After you create or extend a spanned volume, you cannot delete any portion of it without deleting the entire spanned volume.
- You cannot stripe or mirror spanned volumes.
- Spanned volumes do not provide fault tolerance. If one of the disks containing a spanned volume fails, the entire volume fails, and all data on the spanned volume becomes inaccessible. The reliability for a spanned volume is less than the least reliable disk in the set.
From Microsoft Technet
Creating Spanned Volume
Windows always provide some good built-in tools to help users out. Taking Windows Server 2003 for example to show how to create spanned volume.
1: Right-click Computer on desktop, choose “Management” and then click “Disk Management“.
2: Right-click the unallocated space, and then choose “New Volume“.
3: In the New Volume Wizard, click “Next“, and choose “Spanned“, and then click “Next“.
4: Choose the dynamic disks you want to use and specify the size you want for the volume, and click “Next“, and then follow the instructions on your screen.
Extend Simple Volume to Spanned Volume
Taking Windows Server 2003 for example, you can follow the following steps to extend a simple volume to spanned volume.
1: Right-click a simple volume in the disk management, and then choose “Extend Volume“.
2: In the Extend Volume Wizard, click “Next“. After that, in the “Select Disk” dialog-box, select the dynamic disk you want to use and click “Add“. And then, put values on the “Select the amount of space in MB”. Finally, click “Next“, and click “Finish” button.
If you want to extend volume on dynamic volume, you can refer to this post to get the solution: Extend Different Types of Dynamic Volumes with Screenshots Given.