How To: Repartition Your Hard Drive For Free Without Formatting or Losing Data

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preacher1010

User Beware,

Since i wrongly deleted my HDD partition due to the frakked up unfriendly user interface of Parted,

I have never used it since.

Acronis is my only choice. Its not worth the risk.

Text-based UI belong to the 80's.

" /dev/sda1 " , "/dev/sda2 " - leave all this bullshit to the Linux worshippers.

 

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PhoneyVirus

I have a copy of this, every Poweruser should have a copy in his/her toolbox.

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MdX MaxX

Here's a heads up to anyone doing this.  The article says GParted requires 30min for each 100GB of Hard Drive space repartitioned.  I don't know where this estimate came from, because when I did this, GParted broke a 100GB chunk off my Drive and made it a new partition in less than 20 seconds.  It was just as fast when I merged that chunk back with the main partition.

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Zoandar

I downloaded the version 4.3 Parted magic ISO, and used first Nero 8 and later Alcohol 120 to make discs of the software. However, the Sony notebook I am rebuilding won't boot from either of them. I can boot from other bootable CDs, like Drive Image, but not from these new Parted Magic discs. Did I miss something? What has to be done to make them bootable?

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yogurt80

Hmmmm...   I'm confused.  I used parted majic yesterday, it took all day.  I have a 500 GB HD, and with 2 partitions- a 30GB for my OS, and a 470 for music and thngs.  I wanted to move 20 GB from the large partiion to my OS partition.  I moved 20 GB from the begining of the 2nd partition, but how do I add itto the first partition?  now ha 20GB of fre space set between ttwo partins, but I don't know what to do wth it.

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alakazahm

I followed the exact guidance here and it appeared to have worked perfectly, however, when I use Disk Manager in Vista to check the new partition layout:  Old:  500 GB drive, three partitions, 25, 50, 325 (where Vista was using 22 of the 25 GB of the OS partition hence the need to act to increase the OS partition size), New:  50,50,295, appears perfect, right?! Maybe wrong:

 When using Windows Explorer, the C: drive still shows 2.74 GB free of 25 (vice what should be 27.7 GB free).  Any ideas anyone?!  I need to install SP1 and don't want to act until Windows Disk Manager and Windows Explorer agree..arrgghh!

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DavidWitteried

I tried the ISO image verstion of Parted Magic but it will not see my RAID 0 array. How can I make it work with my RAID array? I am using the motherboard controller on a ASUS Striker II Formula motherboard.

David Witteried

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Christian Hart

Another reason this article is so timely: while Partition Magic is still a breeze to use, last time I checked, it isn't supported in Vista. Because Symantec remains a graveyard where old, good software is purchased and then allowed to die, I'm not hopeful they'll update it.<sigh> I'm still using XP but the days seem to be numbered for at least 2 software products I've depended on for years.

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webgrunt

Remember to back up your data before doing this, in case a power outage or sudden hardware issue occurs when the partition is being changed.

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Psychotech

I,ve been using Partition Logic for a couple of years now. It looks very similar. It is also free.

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watuzi

Thanks Justin, I'm gonna try this on my junk pc as an experiment. Can you do a howto on cloning your OS hard drive into a bigger, newer hard drive? My current pc is getting full and I don't want to do the reformat/reinstall thingy. It's too much of a hassle.

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frankstanley

Worked perfectly, I never even knew this was possible before!

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mikepa

This a great find ....

I agree that an article on keeping data in a seperate partition on Vista would be usefull.   Moving My Docs to  D: was easy with XP, but is nigh impossible to do perfectly in Vista (way to go MS!).

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Talcum X

 FIPS partition splitter( yes, that's redundent).  it was shareware, but it was also pre win95.  I dont kow if it has evelved to include Fat32 or NTFS or just faded off into obscurity. But it worked just the same.  Slick DOS based util. that I had in my arsinal for years.

***********

Every morning is the dawn of a new error.

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Pixelated

I agree that this is a great alternative and well done tutorial.

Speaking of Partition Magic, that's all PowerQuest's IP that Nortoin aquired when they bought them out. Don't be fooled Norton makes terrible products and when they run through the rest of PowerQuest's ideas it's back to making garbage products.

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Marcus_Soperus

This is an outstanding tutorial, and especially so because it doesn't shy away from the "here's what do if things go wrong" aspect.

I used to be a big Partition Magic fan, but found myself frustrated that the program wouldn't support the biggest hard disks on the market. Do you know if Parted Magic can work with the current crop of 500GB-1TB (and climbing) drives?

I'd also like to see a follow-up discussion of how to use a second partition for data storage in Windows XP and Vista. I've been using one partition for Windows/apps and a second one for data for many years, but I suspect that some readers might not know how to do it.

--------------------------------------------------------

It's amazing how illogical a business built on binary logic can be.

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Justin.Kerr

And yes it works great with larger drives. Biggest I have tested it with is a 750 GB but i'm sure 1TB wouldn't be a problem.

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PhynaeusClaw

I agree it was a great article. Here's one question though. (Either for Marc or Justin)

Other than organizational preferences, what is the point of partitioning a single hard drive into an OS partition and a data partition? (Assuming you are only running one OS.)

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PhynaeusClaw

Thanks for the comments. I see the light now.

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Marcus_Soperus

I've seen my share of hard disk disasters over the years, including disk crashes, corrupted file systems, and I even restored a disk image to the wrong logical drive one time. By keeping my data on a separate drive, not only am I free to fiddle around with the system drive, my data is also safe from disasters.

 

It's amazing how illogical a business built on binary logic can be.

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Justin.Kerr

Yeah, if you have large files you change often (photoshop or video editing) it's good to contain that to a seperate partition to avoid fragmenting your primary windows volume. It also allows you to format and wipe out your OS but since you keep all your document, music, etc on a seperate drive it's easy to reinstall.

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sirphunkee

it makes OS defrags and reinstalls much much easier and quicker

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