Basic Vs Dynamic Disk Comparision

Basic Vs. Dynamic Disk – What’s the Difference

Windows permits two kinds of disks, primary and dynamic. By default, your disk comes as a Basic disk, however you’ll be able to change it to a dynamic one manually.

However, you might wish to know a bit extra about each disks earlier than figuring out whether or not you wish to hold utilizing a primary disk or swap to a dynamic disk. Or you could have by chance transformed to a dynamic disk and ruminating whether or not it is best to hold it as is or revert again to a primary one.

Basic disks and dynamic disks are fairly completely different of their operation and software. So, relying in your scenario, both one could also be appropriate in your use. In this text, we undergo all attainable variations to help you in making such selections.

What is Basic Disk?


A primary disk is probably the most conventional disk storage sort in Windows. It makes use of logical partition tables to handle the partitions on a disk and gives a easy storage construction to retailer and handle your recordsdata.

You have to format the partitions utilizing a file system earlier than with the ability to use them for storage functions. Also, the system partition have to be marked as energetic on a primary disk earlier than you’ll be able to really load the working system from this partition.

What is Dynamic Disk?

A dynamic disk is a extra versatile disk storage that makes use of a Logical Disk Manager (LDM) and Virtual Disk Service (VDS) to group two or extra drives in a pool after which use the storage pool to create dynamic volumes. Depending on the character of the quantity, it is usually attainable to freely modify their measurement with out affecting the information on dynamic disks utilizing such digital disk know-how.

These a number of dynamic disks have to be a part of the identical disk group, the place every disk shops a replica of a dynamic disk database containing all of the disk data. The division of the disk group shouldn’t be referred to as partitions however dynamic volumes to distinguish them from the essential disk’s partitions.


Depending in your want, you’ll be able to have several types of volumes, resembling easy, stripped, spanned, mirrored, or RAID-5 volumes.

  • Simple volumes are extraordinarily just like the partitions of a primary disk. Also, since different sorts require a multi-disk setup, you’ll be able to solely use easy volumes if in case you have only one dynamic disk. If you’ve a number of disks, you’ll be able to simply convert easy volumes to different dynamic sorts.
  • Spanned volumes use areas from a number of volumes. Such areas additionally don’t must be the identical. Unlike easy volumes, you’ll be able to’t solely shrink or take away a portion of a spanned quantity. You have to delete it in its entirety to take action.
  • Stripped volumes distribute enter/output requests all through the a number of disks. It makes use of equal-sized stripes of unallocated area from these disks for learn/write functions.
  • Mirrored volumes present duplicates of themselves to a different dynamic disk. So, not like spanned or stripped volumes whose information will get misplaced when one of many disks will get corrupted, mirror volumes nonetheless retain a replica of information. This manner, you’ll be able to hold working your system or accessing your information.
  • RAID-5 volumes stripe information together with parity to a number of disks. If a disk fails, the parity helps recreate any misplaced information through the use of the remaining information on different disks, stopping such loss. So, whereas mirrored volumes present fault tolerance by compromising the obtainable free area, RAID-5 does the identical with out utilizing up a lot area.

Differences Between Basic and Dynamic Disks

Basic and Dynamic disks each help MBR or GPT techniques. However, aside from that, they’re completely different in each side. So, right here is the breakdown of all of the variations in accordance with numerous facets of a disk drive:


A primary disk incorporates primary partitions, which in Master Boot Record (MBR) partition system consists of major and prolonged partitions. You can have 4 major partitions or three major partitions, and one prolonged partition. And you’ll be able to additional divide the prolonged partition into 128 logical drives. In GUID Partition Table (GPT) system, you don’t want an prolonged partition because it helps as much as 128 major partitions.

You can prolong the partitions utilizing adjoining or contiguous unallocated area so long as they’ve NTFS file system. If you have already got a partition, you’ll be able to’t merge it with one other with out deleting certainly one of them. Deleting a partition creates an unallocated area by eradicating all the information current within the partition.


On a dynamic disk, the dynamic volumes can span over non-contiguous areas on the identical or completely different disks. The database on every disk shops and tracks data associated to dynamic volumes or different dynamic disks to permit such partitioning.

You may freely change the scale of your volumes with out having to delete or shrink certainly one of them to make free area obtainable. If you wish to reallocate area from one quantity to a different, they don’t have to be in contiguous places.

Data safety


If any information turns into corrupt on a primary disk, it’s misplaced for good. So, that you must have a separate backup in case you ever want to revive such information.

It shouldn’t be a difficulty for dynamic disks. They help mirror volumes or RAID-5 volumes by way of which you should utilize a number of disks to create a fault-tolerant system. If any information in a dynamic disk turns into corrupt, the system can restore it from the mirrored disk or through the use of the database on one other dynamic disk.


Converting a primary disk to a dynamic one is extraordinarily straightforward. You can convert it by way of Disk Management with out affecting any information current within the disk.

However, that you must delete or format all the information in a dynamic disk to have the ability to convert it to a primary disk utilizing built-in strategies. You can use third-party software program to make a non-destructive conversion, however most such purposes require paid subscriptions.

Boot Configuration


Basic disks are the one present possibility in case you want a multi-boot setup. You can use numerous bootloaders and set up completely different working techniques in your machine so long as the {hardware} helps these techniques.

Dynamic disks don’t help having bootloaders and consequently don’t permit a multi-boot setup.

Need for Reconfiguration

If you switch a primary disk to a different PC, you’ll be able to immediately use it with out having to make any modifications to your system. In technical phrases, it signifies that the disk goes on-line robotically.

However, in case you transfer a disk to a different PC, it is going to be in an offline state initially. You might want to open Disk Management, right-click on the dynamic disk and choose Online or Import exterior disk to have the ability to use it.

Compatibility and Support

Basic disks are probably the most conventional Windows disk know-how used since MS-DOS techniques. So, it’s naturally suitable even with extraordinarily previous variations. However, since Windows 2000 and above techniques all help dynamic disks, there’s no sensible distinction if we take into account compatibility for Windows techniques.

Other working techniques like Linux don’t help dynamic disks, although. Also, primary disks are the commonest disk sorts, so builders all take into account this disk sort whereas making numerous purposes. Hence, you might encounter points in case you attempt utilizing sure apps with dynamic disks.

Furthermore, dynamic disks are already deprecated besides if you wish to mirror the boot quantity to a different disk for backup. For all different functions, Microsoft has launched a extra resilient storage virtualization know-how referred to as Storage Spaces.

Should I Use Basic Disk or Dynamic Disk?

As we talked about earlier, dynamic disks are already out of date. So, if you wish to use a RAID array or use digital or extra versatile disks, we advocate utilizing Storage Spaces as a substitute.

If you don’t want such features, it’s at all times higher to maintain utilizing or revert again to primary disks as a substitute. Most small enterprise and private customers solely require primary disks as they hold issues easy and are straightforward emigrate.

If you solely use a single disk, utilizing it as a dynamic disk or with storage areas shouldn’t be actually obligatory, as they received’t present fault tolerance anyway.

How to Change Dynamic Disk to Basic Disk?

Now that the variations between the disks, it’s your decision to try how one can convert between these disk sorts earlier than deciding which one it is best to use.

As we talked about earlier, you’ll be able to convert a primary to a dynamic disk utilizing Disk Management. To accomplish that,

  1. Open Run by urgent Win + R.
  2. Type diskmgmt.msc and press Enter to open Disk Management.
  3. Look for the disk and right-click on it.
  4. Select Convert to Dynamic Disk and click on OK.

On the opposite hand, altering a dynamic disk again to a primary one shouldn’t be really easy. If you don’t wish to lose information, that you must use third-party software program. Alternatively, you’ll be able to again up all the information on the disk and carry out the steps beneath to make use of Disk Management for this objective:

  1. Open Run.
  2. Type diskmgmt.msc and press Ctrl + Shift + Enter to open Disk Management as admin.
  3. On the disk you want to convert, right-click on all volumes and choose Delete Volume > Yes.
  4. After you’re completed, right-click on the disk and choose Convert to Basic Disk.
  5. Confirm your alternative.

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