HDD compatibility

THRESHIN

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long story short, i am looking to upgrade my storage...in a big way. i currently have 2x 250GB drives and let me tell you brothers, its not enough.

i'm thinking i would like to go with 2x 3TB or even 4TB drives. here's the issue though: my system is getting a bit old. i have no plans to upgrade at the moment because its simply unnecessary for the games i play. that and i'm a cheap bastard. i usually run my systems into the ground.

my concern is will my mainboard support drives of this size properly? mainboard is a gigabyte GA-P35-DS3L rev. 2. after looking on gigabyte's website, i cannot find any information about this. i understand there may be a problem with UEFI support?

so the question is do i upgrade soon or wait until i am ready to rebuild the entire thing? what other options do i have? thinking along the lines of external USB drives and RAID add in cards.

as a side question, if the system is in sleep mode is it possible to have it wake automatically when another system on my network attempts to access shared files on this system?
 

THRESHIN

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ok so its just check if my mobo has support for EFI, thanks!

currently my system will not power up when an attempt is made to access over the network...not sure why? probably a bios setting
 

THRESHIN

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so i contacted gigabyte support since finding if this board has EFI support was near impossible and anything beyond a 2TB drive is a no go.

i'm wondering, would an add-in RAID card be a workaround? what about partitioning the drive as two?
 

devman

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IIRC you only need EFI to boot a GPT drive, as long as your boot drive is MBR and your OS can handle GPT you can use a GPT disk for data.
 
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THRESHIN

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for $100 into an old system, i think the money is better spent with a new mobo. for that reason, doing the add-in card is a viable option but doesn't make sense. not just to have bigger drives for a year or so.

devman, didn't understand everything you said with the acronyms (its been so long since i was into computers big) but from what i read on wikipedia i *should* be able to take a 3TB or larger drive and partition it into two drives which would suit my purposes just fine.

FYI i'm running win7 64-bit and my boot drive is a 120GB SSD. therefore, booting of a 3TB is not an issue.

PLEASE correct me if i'm wrong here!! it would be an ideal solution if i have this right!

thank you all very much for the help!
 

devman

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for $100 into an old system, i think the money is better spent with a new mobo. for that reason, doing the add-in card is a viable option but doesn't make sense. not just to have bigger drives for a year or so.

devman, didn't understand everything you said with the acronyms (its been so long since i was into computers big) but from what i read on wikipedia i *should* be able to take a 3TB or larger drive and partition it into two drives which would suit my purposes just fine.

FYI i'm running win7 64-bit and my boot drive is a 120GB SSD. therefore, booting of a 3TB is not an issue.

PLEASE correct me if i'm wrong here!! it would be an ideal solution if i have this right!

thank you all very much for the help!
The 2 TiB limit is a limitation of MBR (Master Boot Record). MBR specifies what partitions are on a disk. The partition sizes in MBR are specified a number of sectors using a 32-bit integer. Since sector sizes are traditionally 512 bytes, that means 2**32 * 512 = 2199023255552 bytes = 2 TiB is the maximum size of a single MBR partition.

GUID Partition Table (GPT), a newer alternative to MBR, does not have this limitation, however in order for Windows to boot from a GPT disk the system must use UEFI instead of BIOS. Note that only applies if you want to boot from the disk. Once the OS running it can read partition tables from disks itself so only the OS has to support GPT which Windows 7 64-bit does.
 

THRESHIN

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The 2 TiB limit is a limitation of MBR (Master Boot Record). MBR specifies what partitions are on a disk. The partition sizes in MBR are specified a number of sectors using a 32-bit integer. Since sector sizes are traditionally 512 bytes, that means 2**32 * 512 = 2199023255552 bytes = 2 TiB is the maximum size of a single MBR partition.

GUID Partition Table (GPT), a newer alternative to MBR, does not have this limitation, however in order for Windows to boot from a GPT disk the system must use UEFI instead of BIOS. Note that only applies if you want to boot from the disk. Once the OS running it can read partition tables from disks itself so only the OS has to support GPT which Windows 7 64-bit does.
so my only limitation here is that i cannot boot from a drive that is larger than 2TB...which isn't an issue. even if i have to split the drive into two partitions i don't really care.

what i got from gigabyte support it sounded like a 3TB drive would not work in any way shape or form.

sounds like i'm in better shape than i thought.
 

devman

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so my only limitation here is that i cannot boot from a drive that is larger than 2TB...which isn't an issue. even if i have to split the drive into two partitions i don't really care.

what i got from gigabyte support it sounded like a 3TB drive would not work in any way shape or form.

sounds like i'm in better shape than i thought.
Specifically you cannot boot from a drive that is partitioned using GPT. Since you must boot from a drive that has MBR, that drive cannot have partitions larger than 2 TiB.
 

THRESHIN

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Specifically you cannot boot from a drive that is partitioned using GPT. Since you must boot from a drive that has MBR, that drive cannot have partitions larger than 2 TiB.
great. i have no problem at all then since i boot from a 120GB SSD.
 
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