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Problem extending drive C:

  1. #1



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    Problem extending drive C:

    My wife has been given a second-hand Fujitsu Biblo netbook that has Windows Vista on it. For some reason the netbook had three partitions C18GB), D17GB) and E38GB) when we received it. My wife and children want to use the netbook for watching overseas news programs (TV Patrol) or short (max 20 minutes) news videos, but the netbook typically runs out of space on drive C after about 5-20 minutes and then the transmission stops with a 'buffering problem' error message. It is not possible to continue watching moving pictures and disk space must be reclaimed by running an application called CCleaner and a similar inbuilt Vista function. It is then possible to view the news for another 5-20 minutes, but this of course completely ruins the news.

    I have never used Vista, but googled and found that I can get more space on drive C by removing partitions to the right (D and E) and then extending drive C into the unallocated space left by deleting the partitions of D and E.

    I followed the instructions, i.e. entered Control panel and navigated to Disk Management and deleted drive E, but deleting drive D did not work. I right-clicked on D and noticed that the 'Delete Volume' on the popup menu was inactive (greyed). How can I delete D?

    The centre display pane of the disk management dialog shows this:
    Code:
    Volume   Layout  Type   File system   Status
             Simple  Basic                Healthy (Eisa Configuration)
    (C:)     Simple  Basic  NTFS          Healthy(Boot,Page File,Crash Dump...)
    (D:)     Simple  Basic  NTFS          Healthy(System,Active,Primary Partition...)
    The word 'Boot' to me indicates that the OS is booted from drive C, but what does Active against drive D mean? Totally confused and would be very grateful for help.

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  3. #2
    richc46's Avatar

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    Re: Problem extending drive C:

    Ill get you the name of the software that can do it. But, you cannot change a drive that is in use.

    Try this, but dont use the problem drive, until the partition is changed
    http://www.partitionwizard.com/free-...n-manager.html

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  4. #3



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      Thread Starter

    Re: Problem extending drive C:

    Many thanks richc46.

    I have downloaded the free Home Partition Wizard 7, but I don't know what to do with it.

    I got stuck using Control Panel->Disk Management and right clicking drive D. The Delete Volume entry in the popup menu showed as inactive and could not be clicked. The partition of drive D remains stopping drive C partition to be extended.

    No one here is knowingly accessing drive D.
    Why is drive D partition active? What does 'active' mean? How do I deactivate it? If partition D is not active will I be able to delete it? These questions show that I do not understand this. We don't have a Vista install CD and I don't want to make mistakes that would make the netbook unusable.

    Advice would be most appreciated.

    Ken

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  5. #4
    Lottiemansion's Avatar

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    Re: Problem extending drive C:

    Hi,

    Drive "D" is part of the recovery to day one process (Factory reset). So you should leave that alone.

    Could you install a new hard disk on one of the spare SATA channels on the motherboard or use a USB hard disk to gain space?

    What is your prefered choice?

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  6. #5



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    Re: Problem extending drive C:

    Hi Lottiemansion,

    This is a netbook used by wife and children in all sorts of places. There is no space for a second internal disk in the netbook and they do not want to carry an external drive or usb memory stick in order to use it.

    I deleted drive E resulting in 38GB of unallocated memory to the right after drive D, but drive D could not be deleted. I can only extend or shrink it. Does the Vista install process always create a non-deletable drive D? If so, can I solve this using Vista disk management?

    Richc46 referred to a third-party product Partition Wizard Home Edition 7.0. I could not see a move-partition in the product description for this. However, there is an operation that copies a partition into unallocated space on the same or another disk. If I use this for copying drive D would I be able to delete the original D partition? If not, I would still not be able to extend partition C.

    What do I need to use or do in order to extend drive C?

    Ken

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  7. #6
    Lottiemansion's Avatar

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    Re: Problem extending drive C:

    Hi again,

    The only way you can do what you are trying is to backup (Image) the drives & restore to a wiped disk.

    You will need to partition it correctly. Then select the correct part for the restore. So, you will need to understand & be clear on what you are doing.

    How does that sound to you?

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  8. #7



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      Thread Starter

    Re: Problem extending drive C:

    Thanks again Lottiemansion!

    I may well have to do as you suggest (backup + partition-define + restore) and I have questions about that, but first would gparted be able to move the D partition out of the way so that C can be extended on Vista?

    I have an Ubuntu 10.04 Live CD with the gparted partition editor on it and I have used it several times to successfully adjust partitions of dual-boot Window XP + Ubuntu. Specifically, I have used it to shrink (following defragging) drive C holding Windows XP to make room for Ubuntu and I have also used the gparted move, extend and shrink operations to adjust Ubuntu ExtN partitions. Gparted worked fine and also the resulting dual-boot. As far as I can remember the largest partition move finished within an hour or two.

    As a last fling I am thinking about doing the following for Vista:

    1. using Vista: defrag drive D
    2. using gparted: move D to end of unallocated space effectively swapping positions of unallocated space and drive D space
    3. using Vista disk management: extend C into the created unallocated space to the right of C
    4. might also save some unallocated space for installing a small Ubuntu 10.04 dual-booting

    Will this way of extending C work for Vista or will I have to make some Vista repairs too? I am asking because I found this on Geek talk:

    Using GParted to Resize Your Windows 7 or Vista Partition - How-To Geek

    with the first paragraph:

    'One of the more advanced options for resizing your Windows Vista partition is to use the GParted Live CD, a bootable linux CD that takes you straight into GParted, the great linux utility for managing partitions. The problem is that if you resize your boot/system partition, you will be completely unable to boot without repairing windows.'

    The last sentence may well be a show stopper for someone like myself with no experience of installing or using Vista.

    There are many user comments to this article. Some say repairing Vista is not needed and that Vista would start in normal fashion following restart.
    I don't know what to believe. Is it doomed or worth trying?

    Coming back to Lottiemansion's advice....

    I don't understand the first sentence 'The only way you can do what you are trying is to backup (Image) the drives & restore to a wiped disk.'
    Does backup (Image) mean creating an iso for each drive? If so how? Where would I put them? A DVD (4.5GB) or my largest usb memory stick 8GB would be too small and we don't have an external disk drive.

    Actually there is no user information to save...
    There is no space left for saving user data on C. The total space remaining is about 400MB that is eaten by the browser (Firefox or IE) within 5-20 minutes when watching streaming video. Also there are not many programs in the Program Files folder. I can see Microsoft.Net runtime support, Firefox, Movie Maker, Windows Calendar/Collaboration/Defender/Journal and a handful of small programs like bittorrent client and 7-Zip. Maybe some of these could be deleted but the released space would not make much difference.

    Drive D contains folders: cabs, Document and Settings, Drivers, Intel, movies, Program Files, WINDOWS and one file BOOTSECT.BAK. Looks like most of these are normal folders created by someone 2009 at different dates long before we received this netbook. Is the Vista Recovery data in any of these folders? Or is it hidden?
    Wife and children only know about drive C, so for them there is nothing to save on drive D.

    We do not have an install CD/DVD. Will one be needed?

    Ken

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  9. #8
    Lottiemansion's Avatar

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    Re: Problem extending drive C:

    Well,

    The answer to your question is, yes you will need to repair Vista boot.

    Moving stuff about is not an ideal solution as the manufacturer has spent a great deal of time to develop a "Tried & tested working set-up".

    The "D" drive is the recovery partition from the manufacturer & contains the set-up files & system for recovery.

    So, Do not defrag that. I would create a back-up set of images on a USB hard drive.

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  10. #9
    whs's Avatar
    whs

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    Re: Problem extending drive C:

    I have not read all this, but do you realize that D: is where your bootmgr is sitting (active partition). If you touch it, you will not be able to boot any more. The wordng "boot" only means that this is where your system is located.

    The boot sequence is: MBR => bootmgr in the active partition => the OS partition marked as "boot"

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  11. #10
    MilesAhead's Avatar

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    Re: Problem extending drive C:

    The program that handles the video should just be installed on the largest partition. If it insists on installing on C: find something else. If it's part of the browser, just install a browser on the large partition. Messing with your partitions, esp with GParted when you're not sure what to do is asking for headaches.

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