Getting started

How to create pool on Storage Spaces for Windows 11

Here's how you can start creating a pool and storage space on Windows 11 using Storage Spaces with Settings and Control Panel.

Windows 11 Storage Spaces

On Windows 11, Storage Spaces is a feature that allows you to group physical drives into one logical storage that you can expend, adding more drives and protect the data with different protection levels.

Storage Spaces supports several RAID-like features, including “simple” to increase storage performance, but does not protect files against hardware failure (requires two drives minimum). On the other hand, the “two-way mirror” requires two drives and offers protection against failures since the data is copied in multiple drives, and there is a “three-way mirror,” but it requires five drives.

The storage feature also offers the “parity” resiliency option, which requires at least three drives, and it provides storage efficiency and protection against failures by copying data in multiple places. If you want to protect data against two drive failures, there is the “dual parity” option, requiring at least seven drives.

In this guide, you will learn how to create a pool and storage space using the Control Panel and the modern Storage Spaces experience in the Settings app of Windows 11.

Create Storage Spaces pool and space using Settings

To create a pool with Storage Spaces on Windows 11, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings on Windows 11.

  2. Click on System.

  3. Click the Storage page on the right side.

  4. Under the “Storage management” section, click the Storage Spaces option.

    Windows 11 Storage Spaces

  5. Click the Create a storage pool and Storage Space option.

    Create storage pool and space

  6. Confirm a name for the storage pool.

  7. Select the drives to create a storage pool.

    Quick tip: The required number of drives will depend on the resiliency level you want to use.
  8. Click the Create button.

  9. Under the “Name” section, confirm a name for the storage space.

    Storage pool setup

  10. Under the “Size & resiliency” section, specify the size of the space.

    Quick tip: If you plan to dedicate all the available capacity to the storage space, you can leave the default size. You can also make the storage larger, and when space starts to run low, you can add more drives to extend the storage.
  11. Use the drop-down menu and select the resiliency option, including:

    • Simple – requires at least two drives, and there is no data protection.
    • Two-way mirror – requires at least two drives, and there is data protection in the event of one drive failure.
    • Three-way mirror requires at least five drives and offers data protection of up to two drive failures.
    • Parity requires three drives and offers data protection and performance.
    • Dual parity – requires at least seven drives, and it offers data protection with up to two drive failures and performance.

    Create storage space

  12. Click the Create button.

  13. On the “New volume” page, specify a label for the drive.

  14. Specify a letter for the drive.

  15. Select the NTFS option for the file system.

    Quick tip: You can also access the Advanced settings to mount the drive as a folder, specify the allocation unit size, and enable compression.

    Storage Spaces volume setup

  16. Click the Format button.

Once you complete the steps, the new drive will appear in File Explorer to store data. If a drive fails, the storage and data will be available, but you will need to replace the hard drive in question as a second drive failure will cause data loss.

Create Storage Spaces pool and space using Control Panel

To create your first drive pool and space with Control Panel, use these steps:

  1. Open Control Panel.

  2. Click on System and Security.

  3. Click the Storage Spaces option.

    Control Panel Storage Spaces

  4. Click the Create a new pool and storage space option from the left navigation pane.

    Create new pool and space

  5. Select the drives that will be participating in the pool.

    Select drives for pool

  6. Click the Create pool button.

  7. Under the “Name and drive letter” section, confirm a name for the storage space.

  8. Specify a letter for drive.

  9. Select the NTFS option for the file system.

  10. Under the “Resiliency” section, use the drop-down menu, and select the resiliency option, including Simple, Two-way mirror, Three-way mirror, Parity, or Dual parity.

  11. Under the “Size” section, specify the size of the space.

    Control Panel storage space setup

  12. Click the Create storage space button.

After you complete the steps, the pool and space will be configured, creating a new drive available in File Explorer with the specified letter and label.