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How smart are normal IDE (or Sata) disks?





FunFunkyFritz
We all know that drives has an internal reserve of blocks that the drive itself uses to hide/replace bad blocks.

But does anybody know if that reserve can be enlarged in any way?
I have this idea of formatting the drive in such a way that the drive has 3-5% (or max 3GB) unformatted space.

My question is : are the drives smart enough to use unformatted blocks as a bad block reserve?

Follow up question: If the drive do use un partitioned space as a bad block reserve, then maybe it is not advisable to use the entire disk as a LVM disk (without partition table)

Grateful for answers
badai
as far as i know, modern hardisk can only be format at factory (format in windows is actually creating the file system, not a real format where you create track and sector), and no way you can do it without proper software because the interface to the formatting logic inside the drive is different from drive to drive.

even the old hardisk where you can format from BIOS don't allow you change any setting of the so called "internal reserve of blocks" and you will always end up with slightly less space.

maybe if you can get hold of the proper software, you can enlarge the so called "internal reserve of blocks". in my opinion, the manufacturer must have some kind of formula how much to reserve, and i'm sure they already reserved enough space.

my 120G seagate is 111G while my 120G Maxtor is 114G. so the "internal reserve of blocks" is diffrent according to manufacturer. they must have work it out how much to reserve and i don't think we need to increase it.

i'm sure the people who design the drive are smart enough to use unformatted blocks as a bad block reserve. otherwise they will be fired.

the unpartitioned space won't be used by the hardware itself as the "internal reserve of blocks" because they already have reserved. beside it's windows which detect it as unpartitioned space. how will the drive know it's unpartitioned space? windows will ask the drive which sector and which track only. i doubt the drive is aware how many partition is has on it. as far as it concern, windows will ask this track, this sector, and it will dump the entire data from that sector to windows. that is why we have the slack space problems -- no matter how small the file is, its size on hardisk is always 1 cluster minimum.

but i suspect windows is using it for something becuase when u create partition, windows will always left a small portion of unpartitioned space. maybe NSA asked microsoft to put something there?

FunFunkyFritz wrote:
We all know that drives has an internal reserve of blocks that the drive itself uses to hide/replace bad blocks.

But does anybody know if that reserve can be enlarged in any way?
I have this idea of formatting the drive in such a way that the drive has 3-5% (or max 3GB) unformatted space.

My question is : are the drives smart enough to use unformatted blocks as a bad block reserve?

Follow up question: If the drive do use un partitioned space as a bad block reserve, then maybe it is not advisable to use the entire disk as a LVM disk (without partition table)

Grateful for answers
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