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How to use a SoftRAID startup volume with High Sierra

If you're using High Sierra, and booting up from a SoftRAID volume, you'll need to follow the steps given in this forum post, since the macOS High Sierra Installer does not recognize SoftRAID volumes as valid startup volumes.

Revert SoftRaid Volume to Apple driver
I have a disk I was playing around with on my main computer running 10.11.2. I now want to move it to another computer, but I don't see how to reformat the drive to remove the SoftRaid driver partition using either SoftRaid Lite 5.1.1 or DiskUtility 15.0. I only have the one SoftRaid Lite license.

I am guessing I have to go into Terminal and run the proper commands there, but I am not sure what I need to do.

Please advise.
The SoftRAID driver is located in the System folder not on the disk. If the disk is in SoftRAID format, you can "zero disk" to wipe the partition map, and use it again with Disk Utility.
From what I saw, SoftRaid does create a small partition on the disk, for some purpose if not for a driver. I then looked at the disktutil manual page to see the command I needed to revert the disk to a standard GUID partition table HFS+ format.

What I found worked are the following commands run from terminal:

diskutil list to determine the disk in question was disk5 in my case.

diskutil partitionDisk disk5 GPT HFS+ "Volume HD" 100% to create a single main partition.

diskutil list to confirm that disk 5 slice 2 held the contents of the newly created Volume HD

diskutil enableJournal disk5s2 to turn on journaling.

Once I ran these, I had return the disk to the standard format of Intel-era hard drive.
the simpler way is just "zero disk" with SoftRAID to wupe the partition map, then "initialize" the disk with Disk Utility. Very few users understand or need to understand terminal commands. ;-)

All disks have multiple partitions on them. Disk Utility filters them from the user on Apple disks. SoftRAID creates a status partition for instance, to track status of volumes, store disk errors, etc.

All GPT (intel formatted) disks also have boot partitions for example. So having partitions is normal. THe "driver" is in the OS X system folder of the startup volume. In OS X drivers are never located on the disks or inside disk partition maps.
(12-21-2015, 06:24 PM)SoftRAID Support Wrote: If the disk is in SoftRAID format, you can "zero disk" to wipe the partition map, and use it again with Disk Utility.

SoftRaid 5.1 offers me two options, "zero the first and last 100 blocks" and "zero whole HD".
For this purpose to re-use the HD with Apple hard disk utility again, is it sufficient to choose the first option?
We have posted a SoftRAID beta version that has the "convert" functionality.


Please read the release notes.

There are still some outstanding bugs (its beta after all), but there are no known data loss or volume corruption issues with the beta release.

Let us know if you find any issues.

SoftRAID 5.5 was released on April 11, 2016
How to Reformat a SoftRaid Volume, pulled from the raid array, to a Mac OS HD

Remove the HD, this is the HD, volume, from the SoftRAID external enclosure.

This is the HD you want to convert from the SoftRAID system to the Mac OS.

Now take your StarTech USB 3.O to Sata Duel Drive Docking Station. Or similar brand external docking station.

Plug the external docking station into another computer. This process can not be done on the computer to which the Raid Array is plugged into.

Insert the removed HD into the docking station.

Then open the Disk Utility app on the secondary computer.

And erase the partition on this HD. Use the erase command on the data portion of the HD. Do not use the partition command. And do not try to erase the physical portion of this HD.

This will format the partition as a Mac partition. And the physical portion of the HD volume itself will now show as a Mac Hard drive.

It maybe that you can use the “convert” feature in in SoftRaid’s new version of it’s app, version 5.5.
I did not try this. Because it’s a represented as a beta function.
Convert in 5.5.5 works fine. We did not update the forum posts to reflect the release of the newer version.

You could have easily used 5.5.5 to convert. The problem with your process is it deletes all data. Users want to keep their data when converting to and from SoftRAID partition map format.

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