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SubjectRe: Linux support for Microsoft dynamic disks?
At 03:34 13/05/2001, Jeff V. Merkey wrote:
>On Sun, May 13, 2001 at 12:06:03AM +0100, Anton Altaparmakov wrote:
> > Is anyone working on supporting the dynamic disk format introduced with
> > Windows 2000? If not, does anyone have the specs / any detailed info on
> the
> > on disk structures involved?
>What is your specific question?

My question is quite generic: What is the on disk layout of Win2k's dynamic
disk, i.e. Logical Disk Manager (LDM) database structures? - The article
"Inside Storage Managment, Part 2" by Mark Russinovich in Windows 2000
magazine (full text available freely at: describes in
detail the logical layout of the LDM database, but it doesn't cover enough
detail to go off and implement it in Linux (without a certain amount of
reverse engineering).

Linux needs to understand the LDM database in order to support dual-boot
Win2k (or XP) and Linux configurations where there are one or more dynamic
disks present in the system and the user wants to access their NTFS
partitions residing on the dynamic disk(s) from Linux.

Just saying "Don't use dynamic disks if you want to use Linux" is IMHO a
Bad Thing(TM) as a user might have bought a computer with Win2k
preinstalled on a dynamic disk or, even worse, might have been using Win2k
only previously, and then the user wants to also install Linux on it. In
these cases the user would have to reformat the whole system and start from
scratch unless Linux supports dynamic disks... Reinstalling Windows is a
major PITA considering the number of reboots required and how slow Win2k
boots. I recently upgraded a Win98 machine in my lab to Win2k and it took
me around 5 hours to do with god knows how many reboots in between and
constant user intervention required. Ugh!


Anton Altaparmakov <aia21 at> (replace at with @)
Linux NTFS Maintainer / WWW:
ICQ: 8561279 / WWW:

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