how to convert a dynamic disk to a basic disk in 5 minutes without data loss

This afternoon, STARSCREAM, my trusty Windows 2003 server, breathed his final breath. He was due to be replaced but I did not yet have all the parts to build a new server. Sad times.

One of the big problems with which I was immediately faced is this: due to being an idiot, I had made several of STARSCREAM’s hard disks Dynamic Disks. This means that I couldn’t just plug them into another computer and use them. I couldn’t access my data.

After a bit of forum reading and googling, I came across a life-saving post at My PKB entitled How to non-destructively convert dynamic disks to basic disks. Within 5 minutes I was happily copying my data to another server, a happy boy indeed. All standard warnings aside, it is a testament to the documented process that my Thank You comment was #294.