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OS X Mountain Lion Server For Dummies by John Rizzo

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Erasing, Partitioning, and Creating a RAID by Using Disk Utility

If you’re planning to erase a hard drive for a clean install or a migration, you can use Apple’s Disk Utility either before the installation process or during it. Disk Utility gives you three formatting options:

check.png Use a simple erase.

check.png Divide a drive into multiple partitions.

check.png Use multiple drives together in a software RAID (redundant array of independent disks).

You can use Apple’s Disk Utility to do this formatting at the beginning of the installation process while your system is booted from a recovery drive.

Erasing or partitioning a drive

Erasing a drive in Disk Utility is similar to partitioning. Both destroy any existing data on the drive. Erasing a volume simply wipes the data off it. Partitioning a hard drive divides it into multiple volumes. Each volume appears as a separate hard drive to the user. You can use one partition as the startup disk containing OS X Server (the operating system and services) and use another, larger partition to store the user data. If something goes wrong with the user data volume, the server can keep functioning — or at least it won’t have to be re-created. This scheme also prevents the ...

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