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Re-Partitioning the hard drive

shermans
Rising Star
Posts: 1,053
Thanks: 28
Fixes: 1
Registered: 07-09-2007

Re-Partitioning the hard drive

I want to repartition my 120 gb hard drive. The problem is that it was supplied with an HP OEM XP HE setup, which means that I cannot boot up from an MS XP boot CD (because none was supplied of course) but am locked into the HP configuration, which has a 5gb partition which mirrors the system and has a lot of other software on it and recovery software to burn onto a set of dvds.

What I want to do is to repartition the 120 gbs into, say, 5 partitions of about 20 gb each, plus the D: partition with all the HP b------- on it - best to play safe and leave that there. The C: drive currently is one massive 115 gb partition which is silly.

What I am thinking of doing is to boot off an old Windows 98 diskette and use the old DOS Fdisk.exe to repartition the 120 gb hard drive, formatting with NTFS as appropriate. Then I will use my HP recovery dvds to re-build Windows XP from scratch.

Can anyone tell me before it is too late whether this will work ? Or will I encounter problems ? Alternatively, is there a better way of doing it ? I could splash out on £50 worth of Acronis Disk Director software instead but it seems a lot of money for a fairly straightforward task, bearing in mind that all my data is backed up, and I want to put all my program files in any case on a separate partition. So I am not worried about reformatting and losing all the data / files - the system is quite new, so not much is loaded on it yet anyway. Anyone know of any similar freeware out there ?

I would prefer, quite frankly, to use Fdisk.exe simply because I am familiar with it and better the devil etc. But will it do the same thing and will it work ?

Any advice would be most appreciated before I plunge into the dark and commit myself !
:roll:
9 REPLIES
Rich
Grafter
Posts: 184
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re-Partitioning the hard drive

I would suggest using something like Acronis or Partition Magic to rearrange your existing partitions.

If you use the Win98 boot disk, you will only be able to partition as FAT32 - 98 doesn't understand NTFS.

Also, bear in mind that to have more than four partitions, some will have to be 'logical' partitions within an extended partition.

Regards
Richard.
shermans
Rising Star
Posts: 1,053
Thanks: 28
Fixes: 1
Registered: 07-09-2007

Re-Partitioning the hard drive

Thanks for the reply. You are right about Fdisk not supporting NTFS. My apologies.

I was not aware that you can only have 4 partitions, so I will bear that in mind. But logical partitions will do as well for most of my purposes.

I have downloaded a copy of Partition Manager but there are no instructions with it and I do not understand it ! I have a demo copy of Acronis but I read somewhere that the demo version does not allow you to save the changes which I don't quite understand -having formatted, I don't see how it could restore the previous format.
madswitcher
Grafter
Posts: 235
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re-Partitioning the hard drive

Hi Shermans

if you can, I would suggest that you back up and verify your system to another physical disc drive - Acronis can do this for you, including the verify image.

A sequence might be as follows:
emtpy the temp files and the wastebasket.
Defrag the system disc.
back the PARTITION up to another drive using Acronis (not disc backup)
Verify the partition image
Make an acronis boot disc to a CD using a CD burner
Boot the Acronis CD to make sure it works and can see both disc drives
Use the Acronis restore partition option on the CD you have booted, restore the original partition back but tell it to re-size on the restore. (to say 20G) and make the partition the active one.

Reboot and this should leave you with the 100G unused.

Go to the Conrol panel- administrative tools-Computer management-disc management and you should be able to create new partitions from here and format them.

If anything goes wrong, you can always restore your original image back.

To anyone else reading this post: have I missed anything out?

I think that is is always a good idea to have a second drive installed just in case the system one goes bad, and where you can keep personal data away from the system. This way if something infects the system disc, you can always (in an extreme case) rebuild the system without losing personal data.

Hope this help

Good luck, Mike
shermans
Rising Star
Posts: 1,053
Thanks: 28
Fixes: 1
Registered: 07-09-2007

Re-Partitioning the hard drive

Thanks Mike, I will try what you recommend. I have a already backed up all the data onto CDs, so no worries there and I also have a separate backup also which is my laptop and will use that for the image as there is plenty of space.

However, before I start using Acronis, it does says "Demo" on the download. Although I can not yet find anything to suggest that it will not work. nevertheless I thought I read somewhere that the demo version does not allow you to save the changes. Does anyone know whether this is correct ? I do not want to go through all the above only to find I cannot finish the job !

Thanks.
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,305
Thanks: 971
Fixes: 57
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re-Partitioning the hard drive

From memory the demo has all of the features but has only a limited validity (15 or 30 days I believe)
holdtight
Grafter
Posts: 1,634
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re-Partitioning the hard drive

I believe the demo version lets you go through the motions but wont apply any changes when your done, Its for people who are thinking of buying to try just to see if it does the job they want it to do

most of the time you only need this kind of software ocassionaly so if they made the demo fully functional even for 15 days they would never sell it

I could be wrong about this though as i have the full version so i stand to be corrected if anyone knows different
madswitcher
Grafter
Posts: 235
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re-Partitioning the hard drive

HI agan Shermans

Sorry - can't help on the spec of the demo version as I bought the full one for about $30 - downloaded I seem to remember.

It is a very usefull utility that I use every couple of weeks and consider it a good investment - maybe worth considering.

Cheers, Mike
holdtight
Grafter
Posts: 1,634
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re-Partitioning the hard drive

I would agree with that the Acronis tools are an excellent investment i use Trueimage regularly and disk director suite when the need arises

A superb set of tools at a good price and very easy to use definately worth considering
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,305
Thanks: 971
Fixes: 57
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re-Partitioning the hard drive

Have a look at the bottom of this page. It appears that the restriction is that you can't work from a bootable CD which is how I normally use it.