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Adjusting partition size?

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Following a major crash, my wife recently had a second 40GB HD

installed. Unfortunately, the installer took the simplest option of

making the whole new drive a single partition, instead of two of 8GB

and 32GB, as on the other drive. The organisation is therefore now as




C 40GB:Win XP Home SP2, programs and all data



F 8GB: Empty

G 32GB: Backups

That's obviously more secure than before. But I'd like to go further. I want to use Drive Image 2002 'Copy Drive' facility to copy the OS to F, so that in an emergency we could boot up to that instead of C. But DI won't allow that. Even though C contains only a TOTAL of about 7GB, and F is 8GB, it says there is insufficient space.

From study, it looks as if I can temporarily resize C: safely, so that DI will let me copy it to E: Then I can resize C: back up to 40GB again. But it would be reassuring to hear from more experienced DI users before I press on! Hate to think of the marital consequences of wiping WinXP! ;)

Note that I don't intend to do this copy as a regular backup. After much effort, we now have all the programs my wife uses on a regular basis. Not much will change form now on. If, heaven forbid, we had another disaster in a year from now, I reckon she would be able to boot into E: and be instantly familiar with the environment.

Any advice would be much appreciated please.


Terry, UK

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You should check if the partition is NTFS or FAT32.

Most tools capable of resizing an NTFS partition are Commercial, like Partition Magic, Acronis, or Paragon, the only exception I know of being NTFS resize (under Linux).

Here is a nice and simple related page:


If it is FAT32 both fips:


and the zeleps Partition resizer:



from a DOS diskette can work, as well as

or parted:


included in most if not all Linux Live CD distros




(above link is down right now, use this cached page if you cannot reach it:)

should be included as well in most live cd linux distros, relate to the above page for links, I can only suggest you, as it is a "one time only" use, a "small" one, like RIP:


(23 Mb) if you have a CD-ROM burner

or Partboot:


(two floppies)

To create the floppies, I strongly suggest you to use this windows NT based FREEWARE utility:



I assume you have Winzip or another .gzip/.tar uncompressing utility, if not get 7zip (FREEWARE) here:



Edited by jaclaz

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For anyone else that ends up here with similar query, happy to report the following approach proved successful:

1) Copied C:\Documents and Settings\Janet\My Documents to

G:\C-MyDocs\My Documents to reduce size of C: by about 3GB, and provide another backup in addition to one made automatically last night of entire C:\Documents and Settings.

2) Installed PM 7.0 and made Rescue Diskettes. (I'd previously done

chkdsk on C: and G:)

3) With PM, resized 38GB C: partition to about 8GB. That was the step I was most nervous about, but it went smoothly. (Note that I could *not* do this in DI as I'd thought earlier.)

4) Used Drive Image 2002 to Copy Drive C: to F: That took a long time but again went well.

5) Was then able to dual boot as desired!

6) Used PM 7 to resize C: back up to 38GB

7) Copied G:\C-MyDocs\My Documents back to C:\Documents and Settings\Janet


The only glitch was that somehow both versions of XP (on C: and F:) now identified the special folder 'My Documents' as being G:\C-MyDocs\My Documents. So various programs Open/Save interfaces were now misleading and irritating. Took a while to stumble on the cure: from Start, r-click My Documents and in Properties use the Move

option to re-specify C:\Documents and Settings\Janet. (I'd be interested if anyone can explain why that issue arose please.)

On testing the alternative boot, I'd forgotten about the 'active'

partition apparently always getting called C:, so it came as a surprise that C: and F: were reversed ;) .

So that's a nice friendly environment on tap immediately should she ever have another disaster with the other HD.


Terry, West Sussex, UK

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