Out of Disk Space

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by mjt, Jun 4, 2001.

  1. mjt


    My computer has 3 separate drives. Only 2 GB is allocated to my C drive, and my other 18 GB is on D and F. I'm out of disk space on C, and I'm trying to figure out how to use the 18 GB I have left.

    I've moved some stuff that I never use over to D. However, anything that I do use that I try to move to D no longer works when I put it on D. I have my C and D folders open, and I'm just dragging the folders from C to D. Why won't these programs work anymore when they're on the D drive?

    Someone suggested that I convert my system from FAT to NTFS, then increase the size of my C partition (with Partition Magic.) Does that make sense? If so, how would I do that?
  2. Baron

    Baron ET Founder

    You can't just drag programs from C: to D:.

    When you install a program, an entry is usually made into the system "registry", which contains critical pieces of data about your application like where it's installed, the directory that installation log files can be found, what modules and libraries to load and where to find them, and a variety of other things. When you change the location of a program simply by dragging and dropping the program's folder to another drive, you've changed the physical location of the files but you haven't changed the entry for that program in the registry, thus creating a problem.

    If you've never edited the registry before, I suggest that you avoid doing so now, since a minor mistake can destroy your system. The best thing to do is restore any moved applications that aren't working to their original locations. Once you've done that, uninstall those applications from your windows control panel and then reinstall them to your D: drive. The uninstall process will remove the old registry entry and the new installation will create a new entry to reflect the applications new home on your D: drive.

    By doing it this way, you will be able to free up space on C:, safely move all your applications to D, and avoid the use of registry editors and disk partitioning programs.

    The only thing to remember is that you'll need to always change the default path of any new applications that you install in the future so that they get put into D:\Program Files\ instead of C:\Program Files\.
  3. mjt


    The problem is, most of the stuff on my C drive was already on there when I got the computer. For example, I have Office 2000 on there, which is about 80MB. I can't remove that from C, because I don't have any disks available to reinstall it on D. I'm guessing I have only about 30MB of stuff I can remove from C that I can reinstall on D.

    So do I need to switch to NTFS and increase the size of my C drive? Could that hurt my computer in some unforeseen way?
  4. Mjt
    I will be anxious to see if there are any responses to your question. I have exactly the same problem (2&18GB's).
    Are both your drives formatted the same or are they different (FAT & NTFS)?
    Does anyone know how to make this into one whole 20GB drive.
  5. The easiest thing to do is to extend the C partition using partition magic. Do you run NT or w2000k? You would get more space going to ntfs, but under NT you won't be able to access files on other partitions that aren't ntfs.

    Another solution would be after saving any wanted data on your drives other than C, fdisk and format that drive; create one partion if you like (remember C goes untouched).

    Next copy the C drive to the newly created, larger drive.

    good luck
  6. My first recommendation would be along the lines of what Baron said, just don't uninstall any programs that you don't have the installation disks or CD's for. Any programs that you do have the installation disks for, first back up any saved files or documents that you've created, then uninstall the programs as Baron said, and reinstall them to your D or F drive.

    Another thing to do that can free up quite a bit of space on your hard drive is to do searches for files that you don't need (and may not even know are there), such as wav files, mpeg, mpg, mp3, pdf, hlp. For instance, select Find from the Start menu, set it to search the C: drive, and type *.wav, and see what's there that you can get rid of. Then try *.mpeg, *.mpg, *.pdf, etc. You will often find a bunch of files that you never even knew were there, including a lot of unnecessary foreign language help, and pdf files that take up many megabytes of space.
  7. Knyyt



    What you may want to do, is make your larger HD your primary drive, and the smaller HD you storage. Above link should help you accomplish that fairly simply.

  8. Lancer



    Partition Magic is very easy to use and does exactly what you are wanting to do without moving any files. As long as you have free space to work with, you can adjust your C:, D:, and F: partition sizes as you like. Simply described, the procedure takes free space from one partition and adds it to another without hurting anything. Also, if part of your drive is unallocated (not allocated to any partition), you can extend a partition to pick up that unallocated space.

    You don't need to convert your file system from FAT to NTFS. I would consider conversion if running Win2K. Advantages are disk space conservation and security. Partition Magic does file system conversions. (For NTFS file systems, make sure to get version 6.0 or later.)


    If you have unallocated space or if you delete non-C: partitions to free space, Partition Magic can extend your 2GB C: partition to include the entire drive capacity. If you delete a partition, all data in that partition will be lost, so you'll have to deal with any files in the partition before delete. The alternative is to cull and relocate non-C: files as Baron and zboy describe, then use Partition Magic to minimize non-C: partitions, extending C: to pick up the space. The result is a large C: and minimized non-C: partitions, and no partitions deleted. This is your only option if you have programs in non-C: partitions that you just don't want to uninstall and reinstall in C:.

    On a related subject, if you are doing drive-to-drive copying or want to create an image of a drive for backup purposes, PowerQuest has another product called Drive Image that I'd recommend. In the copy/image-restore process, it will also allow you to resize the destination drive partition. It also has some manual partition management capability, but it is limited compared to Partition Magic. (For NTFS file systems, make sure to get version 4.0 or later.)
  9. mjt


    Thanks all for the help.

    macal425 (and anyone else with this same problem)

    Here's what I had to do to fix the problem:

    I installed Partition Magic. Apparantly I didn't have enough disk space for the whole operation. The program itself is 28MB, and it takes another 50MB or so to switch the file system. You probably should have 100MB free on your C: drive to be on the safe side.

    I couldn't automatically increase the size of my C: drive. I guess you can only have 2GB on C: if you have a FAT file system on it. So I had to switch from FAT to NTFS. (This took me forever; I restarted my computer several times because I kept missing the message that I didn't have enough space on my C: drive; consequently the switch to NTFS was aborted.) There's an option on Partition Magic to switch the file system.

    Switching to NTFS increased the free space on my C: drive by about 500MB. I then decreased the size of my D: drive by 2GB, and increased the size of my C: drive by the same.

    This whole process took me about 5 hours. If I had a brain, it may have taken about an hour or so.
  10. white17


    MJT; let us know if this reconfig of your drive space has any effect on the "freezing" problem you were having a few weeks ago. Or did that already get resolved?

    #10     Jun 6, 2001