Creating more than 4 partitions

  • Thread starter msnews.microsoft.com
  • Start date

M

msnews.microsoft.com

Two of us have been searching for hours (forums, newsgroups, google) on how
to create more then 4 partitions in on the same drive in Vista. We
understand you can't have any more then 4 primary partitions. Here is how
the Dell M1530 XPS came preconfigured as:

Partition 1 = OEM (Dell Utilities)
Partition 2 = Primiary (Dell Recovery)
Partition 3 = Primary (C Drive with Vista)
Partition 0 = Extended
Partition 4 = Logical


NOTE: Partition 0 or 4 is for Dell Media Direct.


The volumes are:


Volume 0 E DVD-ROM
Volume 1 D Recovery
Volume C OS


Partition 3 is 220GB in size. I want to shrink it to 60GB's. This would
leave about 160GB as Unallocated that I want to format and assign a drive
letter to (a Volume I guess).


We've also played around with DiskPart a lot, so we're pretty familiar with
it, although not experts. All of the instructions on the web are the same,
as none of them work with more then 4 partitions of any type.


Would you mind taking the time to post how to do it please?


Thank you!
 
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T

Timothy Daniels

See the recent thread "reinstalling Vista and Dell's unknown partitions"
in this NG.

In short, delete the Extended partition with MediaDirect and
delete the utility partition. Create all the partitions that you need
with Gparted or BootItNG (i.e. pre-Vista utilities). Gparted will
shrink a partition more than Vista's Disk Management will, and
Casper (a cloning utility) will shrink the partition even further if
you direct it to put the clone of a partition into the partition of size
that you want. For instance, Casper squeazed my pre-installed
Vista partition of 135GB into 20GB since most of the sectors had
no data. In transferring the clone back to the internal HD from an
external eSATA HD, the destiantion partition could be of any
larger size that one desires.

If you need more than 4 Primaries or more than 3 Primaries plus
umpteen logicals inside an Extended partition, you can use a utility
like BootItNG and its proprietary MBR that accomodates a hundred
or more Primary partitions.

*TimDaniels*
 
M

Michael John Ruff

Hello

Becareful created too many partitions on any drive as in all versions of
Windows there is a maximum of 26 drive letters, also take note that if for
some reason you loose the partition table of the drive then you may loose
all of your data on all partitions.

Creating much more than 4 Primary partitions will slow down the drive for
example if you have the OS on one partition and then all your programs on
another the heads on the drive may have to move over a large portion of the
drive and this will take time, as the swap file will be running all the
time, read and writing data, it is far better to use multiple drives.

Mike
 
D

Donald McDaniel

msnews.microsoft.com said:
Two of us have been searching for hours (forums, newsgroups, google) on
how to create more then 4 partitions in on the same drive in Vista. We
understand you can't have any more then 4 primary partitions. Here is how
the Dell M1530 XPS came preconfigured as:

Partition 1 = OEM (Dell Utilities)
Partition 2 = Primiary (Dell Recovery)
Partition 3 = Primary (C Drive with Vista)
Partition 0 = Extended
Partition 4 = Logical


NOTE: Partition 0 or 4 is for Dell Media Direct.


The volumes are:


Volume 0 E DVD-ROM
Volume 1 D Recovery
Volume C OS


Partition 3 is 220GB in size. I want to shrink it to 60GB's. This would
leave about 160GB as Unallocated that I want to format and assign a drive
letter to (a Volume I guess).

WHY? PLEASE let us know WHY you want to do this. IF for any other reason
than just to learn about Vista partitioning, you are actually wasing your
time.
We've also played around with DiskPart a lot, so we're pretty familiar
with it, although not experts. All of the instructions on the web are the
same, as none of them work with more then 4 partitions of any type.


Would you mind taking the time to post how to do it please?


Thank you!

Contrary to your wishes, you DON'T want to shrink your System partition to
60GB. I try to always suggest a MINIMUM of 80GB for a System partition.
120 or more would be better.

It's better to have a LARGER System partition, rather than a SMALLER one,
since it's much easier to SHRINK a LARGER partition than it is to INCREASE a
SMALLER partition in size. Eventually, you will have to increase the System
partition's size, if you shrink it now.

If your Dell is anything like mine, you DON'T need the Dell partitions at
all.
Dell always provides DVDs containing the OS and drivers anyway. Having the
partitions is redundant. Delete them both. Additionally, Dell's OEM
drivers are always older than the newer ones on their support site. Doing
that will recover about 20GB.

I advise you to purchase a partitioning utility which allows you to MOVE
partitions rather than just expanding or shrinking them. Two good ones are
Acronis Disk Utilities, and BootITNG, and both are less than $60. DON'T use
Symantec's offering, since it is NOT compatible with Vista's version of the
NTFS.

You won't be able to get any HD space carved from your DVD drive, for
obvious reasons.

What is (are) the total size(s) of your hard drive(s)?

We need that to know more about how to carve it (them) up.

But you can definitely get rid of the two OEM partitions. They're
completely redundant. Of course, if you do that, your OS will no longer be
"supported" by Dell, but just why do you need their support, anyway? The
only support they offer is a bunch of Indians in an Indian Call center, who
have no access to absolutely necessary information, because Dell won't give
them access to it. All they've ever done for me was apologize for Dell over
and over.

Why do you want to use Media Direct? It just turns your $1500 computer into
a $1500 desktop mp3 player, and adds absolutely nothing to the operation of
your computer. Even it is redundant. Delete it, and add it to the pool of
available free space. You can always reinstall it, if you find down the
line that you absolutely NEED it, since it is provided on its own CD. Just
stick iTunes on your System drive, or use Windows Media Center, if you must,
and create a dedicated media partition to keep your libraries on.

Here's how I have my machine set up:
1) Internal Disk size is 465GB, which I have currently split into an 83GB
partition for storage of programs and their data, and the rest is used for
the System partition. Since I have such a large System partition, it may be
shrunk at any time to add more space to the data storage partition, if
necessary, still leaving myself a generous System partition.
2) I also have an external SATA drive of 465GB, on which I have a 200+GB
data partition, used strictly for media storage, and the rest is laying
fallow, till I can find a use for it. Putting the media files on an
external SATA drive allows much faster and more stable Media access.

Using an external SATA drive allows me to transfer data at FULL SATA speed
(3.0GB/Sec xfer rate), rather than Firewire400/800 (at 400MB/800MB/sec xfer
rate), or USB2 (at 400MB/sec xfer rate), and use it between my Desktop and
my Laptop.

In fact, it is possible to install a Microsoft OS on an external SATA drive
and boot from it (and use it) at full native speed, since the OS sees (and
uses) eSATA drives as INTERNAL DRIVES, not external drives.

STAY AWAY from Seagate eSATA drives, since they are prone to failure more
often than others. IN addition, you will have problems if you absolutely
must use a RAID configuration, however, since RAID is not usable with eSATA
drives. eSATA drives are currently at par, price-wise, with IDE and other
ATAPI drives, maybe even a few dollars cheaper. If your Dell has no eSATA
port, one may easily be added in a spare PCI slot for only a few bucks. I
don't believe a software driver will be required for it, either. Just stick
in a card with an eSATA header, and connect it to a spare SATA connector on
the Motherboard using a normal internal SATA cable, and add the right cable
(probably female-female) between the card and the drive.

I guess you can see that I LOVE eSATA drives.

Anyway, onward and upward.
 
M

msnews.microsoft.com

Thank you to everyone for your quick response and ideas.

I have been using BootItNg for years and swear by it. What I typically do
is have the OS and programs on one partition and ALL data on another
including various images. This is my first experience working with Vista
limitations.

I had considered deleting some partitions, especially the MD one. Dell
taking the route they choose for MD was a very foolish one IMO. Version 4
is supposed to address the issue, but as you have pointed out isn't it
reduntant given the included programs in Vista.

I'm aware that there are many options, but I would still like to no how to
create more then 4 partitions using Bootitng or Vista's DiskPart. Actually
I can easily create more partitions with Bootitng, but what I can't figure
out is how to FORMAT them. This is because when attempting to use the Disk
Manager Simple Volume wizard on the Unallocated space and click finish
thereby expecting it to start the format process, all that happens is the
same message "There is not enough space available on the disk(s) to complete
this operation." Doesn't matter what size value I use to shrink, the same
message is always the result. Searching the web tells the same story over
and over by many users.

Ken
 
T

Timothy Daniels

BootItNG can format the partitions. Let it do that instead of using
Vista's Disk Management. From page 23 of the BootItNG manual:

"Format a partition or volume
1 On the desktop, click Partition Work.
2 In the Partitions list, select the partition or volume that you want to
format,
and then click Format under Actions.
3 Follow the instructions on the screen."

*TimDaniels*
 
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B

Bruce Chambers

msnews.microsoft.com said:
Two of us have been searching for hours (forums, newsgroups, google) on how
to create more then 4 partitions in on the same drive in Vista. We
understand you can't have any more then 4 primary partitions.


You can't have more than 4 partitions, period, using a Microsoft OS.


--

Bruce Chambers

Help us help you:


http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/555375

They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary
safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. ~Benjamin Franklin

Many people would rather die than think; in fact, most do. ~Bertrand Russell

The philosopher has never killed any priests, whereas the priest has
killed a great many philosophers.
~ Denis Diderot
 
N

Nonny

Bruce Chambers said:
You can't have more than 4 partitions, period, using a Microsoft OS.

I believe that it is possible... but ONLY if the partitions are setup
by a third-party partition manager and ONLY if the partitioning has
been completed BEFORE installing Vista on the drive.
 
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A

AJR

Stuff about partitions can be confusing - on basic disks there can be four
primary partitions or three primary and one extended - the extended
partition can have numerous logical partitions (total number of all
partition <= 27).

Dynamic disks can have an unlimited number of volumes (Term vice
partitions).
 
A

AJR

Should note the other disk partitioning system - other than MBR (Master Boot
Record) with the four partition limit - is GPT (Globally Unique Identifier
Partition Table) which is supported on Vista and XP 64 bit and supports up
to 128 partitions.


add that
 
B

Bruce Chambers

Nonny said:
I believe that it is possible... but ONLY if the partitions are setup
by a third-party partition manager and ONLY if the partitioning has
been completed BEFORE installing Vista on the drive.


You may be right. I was thinking of a pure Windows environment.

--

Bruce Chambers

Help us help you:


http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/555375

They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary
safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. ~Benjamin Franklin

Many people would rather die than think; in fact, most do. ~Bertrand Russell

The philosopher has never killed any priests, whereas the priest has
killed a great many philosophers.
~ Denis Diderot
 
T

Timothy Daniels

It appears from the p.4 list of features that only FAT and FAT32
formatting can be done by BootItNG. Have you tried "hiding" the
other partitions with BootItNG before attempting to format a partition
using Vista's Disk Management? Since Vista's partitioning scheme
puts a 2,048-sector offset for the data within its partitions, you might
want to try using Gparted instead of Disk Management to do the
partitioning. Vista understands pre-Vista partitioning, but not the
other way around. (Gparted is available free for download to make
either a live CD or a live USB "thumb" drive.)

*TimDaniels*
 
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T

Timothy Daniels

Ken, there's a guy in alt.sys.pc-clone.dell who uses BING and who
frequently formats multiple partitions. Give that NG a try under the
subject line: "OT Please? "F" =Boot Partition-Not C".

*TimDaniels*
 
N

Nonny

Ken said:
What are the settings for Outlook Express to get in to the ALT groups?

You need to use something other than the Microsoft servers for that.

See if your ISP has a news server. It will have instructions.
 
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