Windows won't allow C drive format.

  • CyberWolf
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Post 3+ Months Ago

:evil:

Okay, here is the deal ... When I set up my hard drive, I did not expect to get into computer gaming at all. So, I set up multiple partitions to help with virus issues and such. Foolishly ... I only put 10gigs on the C partition that holds windows and now, with game files being required on the C drive, I'm out of room.

So, I decided to format all partitions by setting this hard drive as the slave to a friends computer, and was able to format my drives, except the C drive. I set up windows xp on the (now) 107gig partition and then tried to format the C drive so I could remove the partition ... I couldn't format C STILL (and yes I was logged into the windows installed on the D drive) and could not delete the partition durring windows xp set up after the fact. (when trying to format, it just says 'windows was unable to complete the format. When trying to delete the partition, it says it cannot delete the partition because it contains the setup files needed to run winxp setup).

I need to delete the C drive partition so that the D drive will become the default C drive. My programs will not bend to my will and install other folders on the D drive so I have no alternatives. I know that I will basically 'lose' 10 gigs of my 120 this way, but at this point, thats all gravy to me ...

This is an ongoing issue for the last ... 6 months or so ... you have no idea how gratefull I will be if someone can post a helpful reply or IM me and help me out!! :cry:

((sorry for the long post ... I figured, the more info, the more helpful it will be))
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Post 3+ Months Ago

  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Before you do this, you might want to either wait for someone else to confirm it or do a bit of research. I've not tried it in almost 2 years and going off memory here.

At the moment your boot.ini file probably looks very close to this:

Quote:
[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINNT
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINNT="Microsoft Windows XP Home" /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINNT="Microsoft Windows XP Home" /fastdetect


partition one is currently your C: drive and partition 2 your D: drive.

Change the "default" to partition(2) and it should reverse your drive letter order so that it looks like this:

Quote:
[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINNT
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINNT="Microsoft Windows XP Home" /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINNT="Microsoft Windows XP Home" /fastdetect


Again, please remember this is entirely from memory, but I think that should do it. Backup your boot.ini so you can restore it if need be. You will need to reboot for the change to take place. (You'll need to do this on your own machine while it's Master, not while you have it set as slave.)
  • CyberWolf
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Okay ... I searched around but I cannot find that file. I don't normally mess around with the registry or boot info ... I searched all files and folders as well as all system files but it came up with no results ...
  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

It's a hidden file. You need to go to Windows Explorer Tools | Folder options View. Select Show Hidden Files and folders and uncheck Hide protected operating system files.

You should find the file in the root directory C:\ boot.ini and probably also in D:\boot.ini You will need to write click the file and select properties and uncheck read only to be able to edit and save it. You can pull it up and edit it in Notepad.

(I'm not possitive if you will have to change it in both drives or just one of them. That's why I'm hoping someone else comes along to confirm this before you try it. -- I don't want you to screw up your boot because I missed something) Good luck.
  • CyberWolf
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Okay, I did that but all it did was change the start up so that it boots the D drive first. When starting the computer, it asks which windows XP to load, and now it automatically has the 2nd option highlighted (D drive). However, it didn't change the actual system defaults so that the D drive (107gig), is now the C drive ... and vice versa ...
  • CyberWolf
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Also, I noticed that the C drive has a lot more system files than the D ... I wonder why? I would assume that windows set up ... would set up the same files durring both installs?
  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I follow you. Hmmm -- perhaps reversing these:


multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINNT="Microsoft Windows XP Home" /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINNT="Microsoft Windows XP Home" /fastdetect

Put 2 on top like this (*shrugs -- just guessing on that -- I know I did this once before -- it's just been too long ago)


multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINNT="Microsoft Windows XP Home" /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINNT="Microsoft Windows XP Home" /fastdetect
  • LAbrego
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Post 3+ Months Ago

If you already have windows running from D and only want to remove C partition you can boot from a floppy disk containig fdisk. Fdisk is an utility to create/remove partitions. Download this file:
ftp://ftp.fluidlight.com/pub/nospin_files/wpartnfix.exe

Follow the instructions to create a bootable floppy disk, insert this disk into your computer A drive and let it boot. Once you are at DOS prompt follow this instructions to remove your C partition:

Using FDISK - Option 3. Delete DOS Partition or Logical DOS Drive

Hope this help
  • CyberWolf
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I know this sounds ... odd ... to say the least ... but I don't have a floppy drive at this time ... It won't work without a floppy ... curses ...

I'll have to try this fix in a few days.
  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Actually I don't think Fdisk will work if you are on NTFS
  • CyberWolf
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Which I am ... so I shouldn't try the fdisk fix once I get a new floppy drive?
  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

OK -- I was on the wrong path. I finally found the instructions from Microsoft. Sorry I didn't locate it sooner, but I've been pretty busy today:

http://support.microsoft.com/default.as ... -US;223188

After you've made the switch you should then be able to format the original C drive since it will no longer be the boot partition. (You should probably switch your boot.ini back to it's original state.)
  • CyberWolf
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Very busy and still have the time to reply this much? Thanks for the help, first but ... I have one question about this. In the article it says:

-----
Warning Do not use the procedure that is described in this article to change a drive on a computer where the drive letter has not changed. If you do so, you may not be able to start your operating system. Follow the procedure that is described in this article only to recover from a drive letter change, not to change an existing computer drive to something else.
----

But what I am attempting to do is change Drive D to Drive C and vice versa. Or remove C completely so that D becomes C by default.
  • Arcath
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Some P4 motherboards will let you boot from a USB key, if you have one or can borrow one for a day use labrego's suggestion the same way.

or . . .

Partition Magic - ($$) just resize/delete/whatever the partition in windows.
http://www.outpost.com/product/4037142

or . . .

if you have a cd burner, burn the knoppix ISO. It will make a bootable CD that will boot into a linux/BSD OS without touching your hard drives at all. Once in the GUI you can delete/create partitions with it, among many, many other things it can do.
Good side: It's Free!
Down side: it's kinda technical so you it's not for the timid user.
http://www.knoppix-std.org

All in all it sounds like you have given up trying to keep any data on the drive and just want it repartitioned so if you have another pc floating around, or can borrow a friends PC for 10 minutes, just stick your drive in the other PC and use labrego's suggestion of fdisk.
  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I missed that - read it quickly. hmmm...let me think about that.
  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Since you've waited this long, if you can wait until Friday if no one comes up with a clearer answer by then, I'll try it on mine. I have a similar scenario where I have 3 partitions, 2 of which I'd like to switch. I might give it a shot on Friday, but I don't want to do it before then because I want to make some backups first and that will give me the weekend to restore things if I have to start from scratch.
  • CyberWolf
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Sure. I am going out of town until monday anyway ... I'll try the suggesions Arcath made as well (thanks) ... and I'll post tonight or tomorrow before I leave to let you know if they worked or if I still need your assistance :D
  • LAbrego
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Post 3+ Months Ago

ATNO/TW wrote:
Actually I don't think Fdisk will work if you are on NTFS

Actually you can, even with NTFS, you'll see NTFS partitions as NON-DOS partition :wink:
  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Thanks -- that's one I never actually tried.
  • Kane
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I left some instructions on your Xanga site. Check them out and let me know if any of it helps. :idea: :?:
  • CyberWolf
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Geeezzz ... That was a sh*t load of information you left on xanga :shock: ... Okay, thank you to everyone here for giving me mad information and suggestions for this issue. I am all set now so I appreciate all the time and help :D

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