Windows Storage Spaces -- Replacing a Failed Disk [Two-way Mirror]

  1. Posts : 13
    Windows 10 Home

    Windows Storage Spaces -- Replacing a Failed Disk [Two-way Mirror]

    Thought I'd pass along some testing I recently performed with Microsoft's Storage Spaces on Windows 10. I wanted to see the process of replacing a 'failed' drive in a Two-way mirror. The good news is that it's pretty simple.

    I started out with a Windows 10 Home Desktop with an existing Two-Way mirror. The Desktop computer was configured with three drives -- A single 500 GB SSD hosting the operating system and two identical 1 TB SSDs hosting my data on a Microsoft Storage Spaces Two-way mirror.

    In looking at Control Panel; Storage Spaces... This was the original set-up...

    Windows Storage Spaces -- Replacing a Failed Disk [Two-way Mirror]-c1.jpg

    From here I simulated a disk 'failure' by disconnecting one of my 1 TB SSD's [SamsungSSD2] from my Desktop's motherboard SATA port. This created a 'Notification' about the Storage Space

    Windows Storage Spaces -- Replacing a Failed Disk [Two-way Mirror]-untitled.jpg

    Although now 'missing' SSD2, the Storage Space could still be accessed normally thru Explorer and you could read/write files as needed without any problems. No changes were evident in Disk Management either.

    Now on to installing a replacement drive. In my case a duplicate SSD which I had available for this 'test'.

    In looking at Control Panel; Storage Spaces you can see that the Desktop computer was operating with a 'Reduced Resiliency' Two-way mirror Storage Space. With the specific problem being 'SamsungSSD2'

    Windows Storage Spaces -- Replacing a Failed Disk [Two-way Mirror]-c5.jpg

    At this point I attached the replacement SSD to the computer followed by selecting 'Add drives' in Manage Storage Spaces

    Windows Storage Spaces -- Replacing a Failed Disk [Two-way Mirror]-c5a.jpg

    Storage Spaces automatically found my replacement drive which I added to the Pool. Manage Storage Spaces reflected the increased Pool capacity due to the added drive which it recognized with a status of 'OK'

    Windows Storage Spaces -- Replacing a Failed Disk [Two-way Mirror]-c6.jpg

    Windows Storage Spaces -- Replacing a Failed Disk [Two-way Mirror]-c7a.jpg

    Need to clean-up the configuration by deleting the failed SamsungSSD2 disk from the Two-way mirror Storage Space.

    Windows Storage Spaces -- Replacing a Failed Disk [Two-way Mirror]-c7b.jpg

    Manage Storage Spaces is now showing the 'new' configuration with SamsungSSD1 and the replacement 'Samsung SSD 860 EVO 1TB' Physical Drives

    Windows Storage Spaces -- Replacing a Failed Disk [Two-way Mirror]-c9.jpg

    Now we're off and running with a repaired Two-way mirror and our replacement drive
    Last edited by MarkMcK; 20 Jul 2020 at 15:58.
      My Computer

  2. Posts : 2,801
    Windows 11 Pro, 22H2

    I really hate to rain on your parade, but you will definitely want to be aware of a Storage spaces related problem currently present in Windows:

    Microsoft confirms storage issues in Windows 10 May 2020 Update

    As far as I know, there is no solution for this (if I'm wrong, I'm sure someone will correct me).

    Also, I've done extensive testing with Storage Spaces myself on at least 5 different systems and I can very easily cause data loss situations in every single configuration that I have tried where Storage Spaces should be able to recover.

    Maybe it's improved since I last hammered it hard around Windows 10 1903 (and every version before that), but I for one trust storage spaces even less than a single disk with no backups
      My Computers

  3. Posts : 13
    Windows 10 Home
    Thread Starter

    Yes... an important caveat and warning. As Storage spaces works 'under' Windows, it lives/dies at the whim of Microsoft and its updates. [I was unable to create a Storage Space under 2020 update btw...] Wish it were more insulated from unwanted/unforced breakage as it has some nice features to include easy transport from Windows system to Windows system and ability to be 'seen' from a Repair disk. Appreciate you adding the info!
      My Computer

  4. Posts : 913

    This is the simplest situation which requires troubleshooting; the only thing you need to know is: add new disk first, give it time to copy data, then remove the failed disk's object. However, there are many problems which cannot be diagnosed/resolved using Control Panel applet, in these cases you need to know and use Powershell commands for troubleshooting. Not so easy for average users, be prepared.

    The problem influences Parity virtual disks, not mirror ones; anyway it is a catastrophic failure of MS software development and testing, strengthened by their current insane philosophy of software distribution. Regarding data loss during testing, did you use powershell diagnostics/troubleshooting? Storage Spaces require an admin, not an user. Personally, I never lost data during years of routine usage, including several critical situations.

    As I wrote many times, only two technologies of Win10 really beat Win7: Storage Spaces and DirectX 12. Sadly, the first is degraded by 1. insufficient testing and "rolling release" concept of Win10 (current problem) and 2. unusable Control Panel applet (all the time).
      My Computer

  5. Posts : 2
    Windows 10

    Sorry to post in an old thread but MarkMcK - did you plug the replacement drive into the same SATA port that the drive you 'failed' was plugged into? My PC wouldn't have a free SATA port to plug a replacement into if a failed drive was still connected.
      My Computer

  6. Posts : 13
    Windows 10 Home
    Thread Starter

    DaveR01 - Believe I used same port. Just a remove/replace operation. Guess I should have noted as such, but I that's my recollection in looking back at this experiment I did. The failure I simulated by disconnecting the drive was a pretty simple one. Not sure what one would see if it was more 'subtle' read/write error or the like... The two systems on which I created a SSD data drive 'mirror' still continue to operate without issue. Guess we'll see if/when a drive failure occurs, but hopefully not for a while. Anything else in the way of questions, just let me know
      My Computer

  7. Posts : 2
    Windows 10

    Great, thanks very much Mark, that's all I need to know (for now ). I was wondering whether, in case of a failure, I'd need to temporarily add a USB drive to the pool but it looks like I won't.
      My Computer


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