Paragon Software Group has just publically opened up their Early Adopter Program that will allow Windows Home Servers v1 to recognize new high-capacity storage drives. This unique software solution uses special drivers and an initialization utility that adds support for GPT hard drives. Read on to find out more about Paragon and my upcoming Friday night plans.
Originally, I jumped on the chance to use my new 3TB drive in my EX485 WHS v1, but could not get it to work with standard methods. I did not have a solution for Windows Home Server v1 and decided to use the 3TB drive as a UEFI boot drive.
In early December, Andrew Edney had connected me with Kathryn Lamb of the Paragon Software Group, and Kathryn told me that the GPT Loader Early Adopter program was starting and could be useful for our WHS systems. This new software from Paragon seemed to be a great way to access the new drive sizes but still keep the security of WHS v1.
Still being a little weary of making changes to my trusty WHS v1, I told Andrew I would sit on it for two weeks until I could talk to their techs in person at CES 2011.
So, this past Thursday night at CES we finally had the chance to meet the Paragon reps in person and they assured me that GPT Loader would work on WHS v1. Tommy Phan, one of their Technical Support Engineers based out of Irvine, said GPT Loader was ready and working for WHS! Excellent news Tommy. He did say that GPT Loader is only for internal storage drives and not for the system drive or external devices.
“Paragon” Windows Home Server?
So, I spent most of last night building a new “Paragon” Windows Home Server v1 specifically for this test. It has a 1TB system drive and I will add a 3TB for the testing. I will add other drives on future paychecks.
Mental Note: Do we really only have SP1 installation disks? Should we not be able to download the SP3 installation? Do I have to do each SP separately every time? Seriously.
Anyway, this Friday night I will install the GPT Loader and document everything so we can verify that the software works! Sweet.
BYOB and Home Server Show
When I took our group over to the Paragon booth at CES 2011 ShowStoppers you could tell that the Michaels, Dave McCabe and Jim Collison were also super excited about the new software. I am sure you will be hearing much more about the GPT Loader from both BYOB and the HSS.
So what is GPT Loader already?
GPT Loader allows you to access the full amount of space on the new high-capacity drives.
Paragon GPT Loader includes a special system driver and a utility for initializing ultra high capacity drives. The driver adds support for GPT (GUID Partition Table) disks, while the utility initializes modern 2.2TB+ drives ready for use.
Note! The current version of Paragon GPT Loader cannot help you to accommodate Windows OS on a 2.2TB+ drive. Its main purpose is to provide access to 2.2TB+ drives connected internally as a secondary device under any Windows OS since XP. Only internally connected single 2.2TB+ drives are supported, not external storages, or those combined into RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks).
Check out more of the details at:
Paragon GPT Loader grants instant access to internal 3TB+ hard disk drives under any Windows OS since XP
December 13, 2010
FREIBURG, Germany, December 13, 2010 – Paragon Software Group (PSG), the technology leader in innovative data security and data management solutions, has expanded support of its Paragon GPT Loader to include any Windows OS since XP, granting full access to modern 3TB+ hard disk drives (HDDs). Paragon GPT Loader now overrides crippled HDD controller drivers in Windows Vista and later OSes to access internal HDDs more than 2TB in capacity despite limitations of system software.
With the growing ability to produce HDDs with higher capacities year over year, a wider spectrum of end users are finding the new 3TB+ drives ideal for use as external storage devices alongside desktops and laptops, or inserted inside workstations and home computers as internal storage. Demand increases as large files — such as HD-video, archived images and music in lossless compression format — become stored and accessed more frequently in the home and workplace.
Newer Windows operating systems, including Windows 7, appear to support modern high-capacity drives at first glance, but other system software — including Intel Storage Matrix Drivers for HDD controllers, which occur in most systems equipped with Intel chipset-based motherboards — limit that support, causing the majority of the disk to remain unavailable. With only 750GB of the usable disk space accessible, users who purchase 3TB drives are paying a premium for storage space that cannot be used due to the limitations of controller drivers native to the operating system.
Paragon GPT Loader, a specially designed driver that adds the functionality to support the GPT partitioning scheme under Windows XP, now grants full, native access to 3TB+ drives connected internally for any Windows OS since XP, including Windows 7.
For more information about Paragon GPT Loader, please visit: http://www.paragon-software.com/technologies/components/gpt-loader/.
Availability & System Requirements:
Paragon GPT Loader supports internally connected single 3TB+ drives under Windows XP, excluding drives used as external storage or those combined into RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks). Paragon GPT Loader replaces outdated HDD controller drivers to use 3TB+ disks under any Windows OS since Vista, including Windows 7. Available for immediate download, free of charge as part of the Early Adopter Program , interested parties are invited to run pre-production software to help validate features of the new technology. Paragon GPT Loader can be downloaded at http://www.paragon-software.com/support/early-adopter/index.html.
Check back with us on Friday night when I load the software and install a 3TB into WHS v1.