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Can one... unpartition a drive?

CorakCorak Registered User
Secondary question: Increase the size of an existing partition?


Here's my dilemma. I only have one physical hard drive at the moment. Silly, I know, given that HD space is dirt cheap. I should go buy another one. Perhaps I will... but in the meantime, I have my drive split into C and D drives. I gave C about 20 gig, and installed Windows Vista on it. D got the rest (200ish, whatever).

"Great!", thought I, "I install Windows on C, and everything else I install on D!"

So... Windows does not like me. It likes having things on C. More importantly, it likes having things on whatever drive Windows is on. It likes to save modules, and save games, and even custom content (damn you Sims 2!) on C with Windows, in silly "My Games" directories and other frustration.

So I am running out of space. Is there a way to just make them into one big partition again, or to increase the size of an existing partition? Or should I just suck it up, reformat as a single partition, install my software with Windows on a big C drive, and buy a second physical drive for my files?

I live!
Corak on

Posts

  • GrimReaperGrimReaper Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Generally you'll want something like partition magic, if I remember correctly vista itself has the capability to resize its partitions too. Although you'll obviously need to be using vista to do that.

    Looks like GParted has improved quite a bit too, it can now do full NTFS resizing.

    GrimReaper on
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  • wabbitehwabbiteh Registered User
    edited October 2008
    I'm not sure one can merge NTFS partitions - but if you have enough room, you could resize C to make it larger, move everything from D into C, delete the D partition, then resize C to fill the whole drive.
    Kind of a kludge, though.

    wabbiteh on
  • bigwahbigwah Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Why not change the location of the saved games and my games folder to the D partition? Right-click folder, properties, location tab.

    bigwah on
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  • AiranAiran Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    [edit] just noticed you didn't state an OS, well this hack is for XP, not sure about Vista.

    You can actually set the default drive directory via a registry hack here: http://www.tech-recipes.com/rx/242/xp-change-default-installation-directory/

    See if it works for you.

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  • bigwahbigwah Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Corak wrote: »
    I gave C about 20 gig, and installed Windows Vista on it. D got the rest (200ish, whatever).

    Guys, he did say what OS he installed.

    bigwah on
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    "Hope he dies tbh but a ban would do."
  • maximumzeromaximumzero I...wait, what? New Orleans, LARegistered User regular
    edited October 2008
    For partitioning, I find that the easiest thing to do is just boot up a linux live cd.

    I did this for a work computer. It got trashed with viruses and spyware, so I booted up a live CD, shrunk that partition to as small as it would let me, then installed fresh copy of XP onto the new partition, then virus-scanned the shit out of the other partition.

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  • AyulinAyulin Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    You can resize partitions in Vista by going to Computer Management (just type it in the Start search bar), expanding the Storage tab, and clicking Disk Management.

    From there, just right-click the partitions you want to change, and choose either Expand or Shrink Volume, depending on what you want. I hear you don't have to reboot after this, but I haven't actually tried it myself. (You can't actually directly merge partitions from here, though.)

    Ayulin on
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  • YesNoMuYesNoMu Registered User
    edited October 2008
    This is sort of related, so I'll ask here: I'm upgrading to Vista on my laptop (free software for students is the best thing ever), and I hear a totally fresh install is better than an upgrade. But, I have some programs and stuff I'd like to keep (steam, popcap games, office). Is there a way I can do a fresh installation and not nuke that stuff?

    YesNoMu on
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  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    You realize you can just change the location which Windows stores user data right? Get TweakUI and use that, although for My Documents and user data you can also do it directly.

    Relocate My Documents by right clicking on it and pointing it at an appropriate place on the other drive. User data (all your user data) - can be done through the users and groups panel under Windows.

    No real need to repartition or any of that business. You could also choose to make a dynamic spanned volume or similar.

    electricitylikesme on
  • CorakCorak Registered User
    edited October 2008
    You realize you can just change the location which Windows stores user data right? Get TweakUI and use that, although for My Documents and user data you can also do it directly.

    Relocate My Documents by right clicking on it and pointing it at an appropriate place on the other drive. User data (all your user data) - can be done through the users and groups panel under Windows.

    No real need to repartition or any of that business. You could also choose to make a dynamic spanned volume or similar.

    Hrm... in fact I did not know this. I'll have to mess around with this. Will it also transfer all the stuff that is already there? Or can I do that manually?

    Corak on
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  • MarvellousMMarvellousM Registered User
    edited October 2008
    Ayulin wrote: »
    You can resize partitions in Vista by going to Computer Management (just type it in the Start search bar), expanding the Storage tab, and clicking Disk Management.

    From there, just right-click the partitions you want to change, and choose either Expand or Shrink Volume, depending on what you want. I hear you don't have to reboot after this, but I haven't actually tried it myself. (You can't actually directly merge partitions from here, though.)


    This is what I used when I was experimenting with Ubuntu on my laptop. If I remember correctly you can just shrink the one partition and then expand the other one using the space you just freed up. It was pretty simple and I had no idea what I was doing.

    MarvellousM on
  • freakish lightfreakish light Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    You realize you can just change the location which Windows stores user data right? Get TweakUI and use that, although for My Documents and user data you can also do it directly.

    Relocate My Documents by right clicking on it and pointing it at an appropriate place on the other drive. User data (all your user data) - can be done through the users and groups panel under Windows.

    No real need to repartition or any of that business. You could also choose to make a dynamic spanned volume or similar.

    When I upgraded my installation of Windows, it took my entire file directory structure and put it inside a directory called Windows.old. It was still as fast as a clean install, and there was nothing installed, but I still had all my data. Pretty sure it does this by default, or there's an option for it.

    freakish light on
  • saggiosaggio Registered User regular
    edited October 2008
    Resizing partitions is very dangerous and I recommend against it. Also playing with the Master Boot Record is a good way to end up having to reinstall.

    If you are deadset on doing it, GParted and Partition Magic are good.

    saggio on
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