How do I avoid losing all RAID volume sets when I reinstall Windows NT?

A. Windows NT stores information about volume, mirror, and stripe sets in the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\Disk registry key. If you reinstall NT, it loses this information and doesn’t recognize the volumes as fault-tolerant sets.

To avoid this problem, perform the following steps before you reinstall NT:

  1. From the Start menu, select Programs, Administrative Tools, then the Disk Administrator.
  2. From the Partition menu, select Configuration, then Save.
  3. Insert a blank formatted disk, and click OK.
  4. Click OK to the success message.

The Disk Administrator creates one file, SYSTEM, on the disk. Keep the disk safe and label it with the system name and the date created.

After you reinstall NT, start Disk Administrator. Select Configuration, then Restore from the Partition menu. Insert the disk to restore your original volume/RAID sets, as well as any drive-letter assignments.

If you perform another NT installation on the machine and are also keeping the original NT version, you can just select Configuration and Search from the Partition menu. The OS will attempt to find other NT copies and then give you the option to duplicate the copies’ configurations.

If none of these is possible and you’ve already lost your configuration, your only choice is to use the ftedit.exe Microsoft Windows NT Resource Kit utility, which lets you edit fault-tolerant sets. You can find complete help instructions in the utility, but use it carefully or you might actually lose the data.

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