Recovery Console and Software RAID1 (Mirroring)

Posted on January 8, 2009 by Daniel Petri in Windows Client OS with 0 Comments

Why can’t I install the Recovery Console on a system that has software RAID1 (Mirroring) on it?

When your system partition (containing the Ntldr,, and Boot.ini files) is part of a Windows basic or dynamic disk software mirror, you cannot pre-install the Recovery Console. If you try to pre-install the Recovery Console with the winnt32 /cmdcons command, you receive the following error message:

No valid system partitions were found, Setup is unable to continue.

The winnt32 /cmdcons command performs the same system checks as a “clean” installation. A clean installation of Windows is not allowed on a mirrored system partition.

If you want the Recovery Console pre-installed on a mirrored system partition to help facilitate a repair, you must break the mirror, install the Recovery Console, then re-establish the mirror.

If you are using legacy basic disk mirroring, you should not break the mirror unless you plan to upgrade the disk from basic to dynamic. Legacy disk mirrors cannot be re-created in Windows; only dynamic disk mirrors can be created.

Pre-installing the Recovery Console on a computer running Microsoft Windows NT 4.0 is allowed, but you must break the mirror, install the Recovery Console, re-establish the mirror, and then upgrade to Windows 2000 or Windows XP. This process retains your legacy basic disk mirroring.

Further Reading

Recovery Console topics include:


Description of the Windows XP Recovery Console – 314058

Install and Use the Recovery Console in Windows XP – 307654

Mirroring Prevents Pre-Installing the Recovery Console – 229077


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