What's the definition of, and distinction between, a volume and a partition?
Storage media (DVD's, USB sticks, HDD's, SSD's) can all be divided
into partitions, these partitions are identified by a partition table.
The partition table is where the partition information is stored, the
information stored within here is basically where the partition starts
and where it finishes on the disc platter.
A Volume is a logical abstraction from physical storage. Large disks
can be partitioned into multiple logical volumes Volumes are divided
up into fixed size blocks or a cluster or blocks.
We don't see the partition as this is sorted by the file system
controller but we see volumes as they are logical and are provided by
a gui with a hierarchical structure and human interface. When we
request to see a file it runs through a specific order to view that
information from within the volume on the partition:
- Application created the file I/O request
- The file system creates a block I/O request
- Block I/O drive accesses the disk
Source What is the difference between Volume and Partition?, answer by Daniel Everitt
A Partition is limited to a single disk.
A Disk may contain one or multiple partitions.
A Volume may span multiple disks as there are several types of Volume:
Creating a Volume or Partition
You can create a new volume or partition on any disk that has empty
space. If the disk is dynamic, a volume is created. If the disk is a
basic disk, a primary partition is created. If the empty space is part
of an extended partition, a new logical drive will be created. All of
them called a simple volume, but each one a different structure.
Depending on the number of available unallocated volumes, you see one
or more options for the type of volume, including the following:
- New Simple Volume
- New Spanned Volume
- New Striped Volume
- New Mirrored Volume
- New RAID-5 Volume
Of the above only a Simple Volume resides on a single disk. The others reside (in parts) on multiple disks (read on for more information on volume types).
Source Partitions and Volumes
Types of Volumes for Dynamic Disks
When you are working with a volume on a Dynamic Disk, you can choose
to extend or span that volume across multiple drives, you can stripe
or mirror, or in server editions you can even use RAID 5. There’s also
not a real limit on the number of volumes you can have, although it
wouldn’t make sense to have a huge number of them.
Here are the types of volumes you can create on a Dynamic Disk:
- Simple Volume – this is a regular “partition”. If the disk type is “Basic”, this creates an actual partition.
- Striped Volume – data is striped across multiple hard drives so that every other segment of data is staggered between the drives for
maximum performance. There is no redundancy.
- Spanned Volume – data fills up on one drive and then fills up the next drive as it gets more full. Two or more drives are basically
taped together to make a bigger disk. There is no redundancy here
- Mirrored Volume – for home users, this is the only form of redundancy that you will get with software options. Read performance
should be faster, but write performance will possibly be slightly
slower, since Windows has to write to both drives for everything.
- RAID5 Volume – only works on server editions, but it can stripe across 3 or more hard drives and include a parity stripe to prevent
data loss if a drive was to fail.
Note: you can’t use a Dynamic Disk for a removable / portable drive.
Source Windows Admin: Understanding Hard Drive Partitioning with Disk Management