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Switch XP OS from 40GB to 160GB drive

by jfranke / March 4, 2005 2:08 AM PST

I have a clean 160GB hard drive and I want to move my original Windows XP install & software from a 40GB drive to the 160GB drive (still using the same machine at the end of the day).

Can this be done easily? Can it be done with our without vendor software (like ghost or something)?


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I'll write NO.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 4, 2005 5:01 AM PST

Here's why. Windows XP does not support over 127GB drives. Reference at

If you don't have a XP SP1 CD, even with Ghost or what clone software you use to move the OS, you will find out that your data is at severe risk if you boot up the XP CD (notice no SP1 or SP2!)


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Yes it can
by fyogi1 / May 11, 2005 11:38 PM PDT
In reply to: I'll write NO.

You have two options.

1. Partition the new drive into smaller drive partitions. For example, one 100GB and one 60GB

2. Upgrade to SP2. On SP2 if you file system is NTFS you can go up to 183GB, if I remember correctly.

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Still not as easy as you note. Here's why.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 12, 2005 12:04 AM PDT
In reply to: Yes it can

XP can't partition over 127GB (or 137GB) until XP gets SP1 or 2. documents this issue.

If you partition with something other than XP's installer then you get to find out (occasionally) why I never suggest making partitions with third party tools. The XP install can fail and cause more calls for help.

In your item 2, you note to upgrade to SP2 but didn't note how to do so for free. Here's how (for free) ->

There are other guides to creating your new and improved XP install CD out there. I like making one with my drivers for ease of install. After I'm done, I make ONE MORE COPY and tape it to the inside of the PC's case for backup.


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Here's what I've done...
by Willy / May 12, 2005 7:13 AM PDT

Remove/disconnect orginal HD, mount the new HD. Using the vendor s/w or other s/w make a 40gb and 120gb partitions. If you have ghost or some image s/w use it for later. Install the XP OS on the new HD plus the mtrbd. drivers(your CDs) on the new HD, but no data or working pgms., keep it fresh. Once done, shutdown system. Now mount old hd as 1st HD and the new HD as 2nd HD, either CS or master/slave setup. Make sure you have the image CD/floppy s/w, and boot to it. Using that s/w, image the orginal HD to the 1st partition of the new HD. Once completed, shutdown. Remove your old HD and mount new HD as master or CS setup. *NOTE* when installing the XP OS make sure the file system is the same as the old, FAT32 or NTSF and of course if NTSF that it works with the image s/w under that OS, as some older image s/w works in a DOS mode. If this makes sense, try it, if not then google for a more complete answer.

The partitions wil resolve XP OS storage limits up front. The data must be transfrred to the new 2nd partition as the working area. Transfer all your data and pgms(after new install) once everything settles down. Keep the windows OS and stubborn s/w that wants "C" partition as its home. Oh yeah, always back-up or safe guard any important before attempting the procedure.

good luck -----Willy Happy

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