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Removing partition on a hard drive

by paulsuttle / April 2, 2013 5:59 AM PDT

Recently I've aquired a second hand desk top PC that I'm doing up for my son. It has 2 hard drives in it, a 20gb and a 30gb. I've reformatted the 30gb drive with the OS, and want to use the 20gb as extra storage. The problem is that the existing operating system is on the 20gb drive, when I try to format the drive, it says that it's unable to complete the format. I've tried to remove the partition by right clicking my computer, going to manage, disk management, etc, but it doesn't allow me to remove the partition. Any ideas please.

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There're imaging programs out there
by wpgwpg / April 2, 2013 6:24 AM PDT

If you want to image the contents of the 20 GB drive onto the 30 GB one, there're numerous programs that will do that. One would be Norton Ghost, another Easeus Todo Backup Free which you can download from . The Easeus program is free.

Now I have to make a couple of comments. You didn't say what OS you're talking about but 30 GB is far too little space for any current version of Windows. When you can buy far larger hard drives for $50 or less, that might be something you should investigate. Next you have two hard drives and say you want to delete a partition. Are you trying to make 2 drives look like one? No hard drive is accessible without at least one partition, so if you have two hard drives, you've got to have a minimum of 2 partitions. Is there some 3rd partition somewhere you want to remove? Not knowing what OS and what you're trying to delete, it's very difficult to tell you how to proceed.

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by paulsuttle / April 2, 2013 5:25 PM PDT

Thanks for replying, should've mentioned that the OS is XP. The smaller drive that I want to format, had I think the OS on before I got it. There's roughly half of the storage space left on the drive, so that's why I'd like to clear of the drive and use it as a spare storage drive. As far as I can see it only has one partition on. Yes, I understand that buying a larger capacity drive would be useful, but at this time it'll be good just to have that extra 20gb as storage.

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Re: removing partition
by Kees_B Forum moderator / April 2, 2013 5:38 PM PDT

Probably some files still are in use, even if you think that you run everything (OS and programs) from the 30 GB disk.

Just start deleting files, folders, subfolders on that 20 GB disk until it's empty. No need to format or repartition. The only things that can go wrong:
1. An access denied error. Than take ownership of the offending folders/files. Google XP TAKE OWNERSHIP to find out how.
2. Files being still in use. Than you'll have to correct that. But it's good to know, because if you would forcefully format that partition (in another PC or as an external disk or from Linux) maybe Windows wouldn't start because it needs it.


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by paulsuttle / April 5, 2013 4:22 AM PDT
In reply to: Re: removing partition

Thanks for that, quick question, if I reinstall windows on the bigger drive, does that mean that it all installs on the bigger drive?
The reason for asking is, you say that there might be some files on the smaller drive that could still be use, if its all on the bigger drive, that shouldn't be the case?
And also, the partition looks like its taking up 8Gb of the drive, almost half, once I've deleted all the files, is there any way of removing the partition, so that 8Gb can be used.

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Re: partition
by Kees_B Forum moderator / April 5, 2013 4:57 AM PDT
In reply to: Partition

Any partition editor can create and delete partitions. Some can do things like:
- make a partition smaller (resulting in unallocated space after the new end)
- make a partition larger (by including unallocated space after the end)
- move a partition to a different starting point at the hard disk
- combine two partitions into one.

Disk management in Windows (depending also on the version of Windows) is rather basic. GPARTED is an open source one. Then we have the program from Easeus, the (much spammed, alas) program called partition wizard, and of course the classic Partition Magic. And more, of course. Just look at the usual download site (like our, or tucows) or google with the a term like PARTITION EDITOR.

But if the Windows one suffices for what you want, I'd use that.


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