Using Partition Magic to change XP from NTFS to FAT32


J

jw

I know I can not change the format of the hard drive from NTFS to
FAT32 while I'm booted into XP on my laptop computer. But I have an
idea. What if I connect this hard drive to another computer as a
slave drive. Then use the ability of Partition Magic to reformat and
retain the data. Will this work?

I know I'll have to change the jumpers on the drive to SLAVE, then
when this is completed, change them back to MASTER.

Finally, will I have to re-register the OS with MS after the format is
changed?

One way or another, this NTFS crap is going in the shitter where it
belongs.
 
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M

Mayayana

This claims to do it for free:

http://aomeitech.com/n2f/download.html

The free version is limited to an 8 MB partition,
but you'd need to resize any large partitions, anyway,
for FAT32. I'd be interested to hear if anyone has
tried this.

I don't know about PM. It's fine if PM can do it.
It doesn't matter whether it's master or slave
drive.

It might be a good idea, either way, to partition
your disk, make your C drive compact, create
FAT32 data partitions, and image your existing
XP to another partition, in case this experiment
doesn't work out. If you don't have a bootable CD
for PM you can run it from the second copy of
XP.
--
--
|I know I can not change the format of the hard drive from NTFS to
| FAT32 while I'm booted into XP on my laptop computer. But I have an
| idea. What if I connect this hard drive to another computer as a
| slave drive. Then use the ability of Partition Magic to reformat and
| retain the data. Will this work?
|
| I know I'll have to change the jumpers on the drive to SLAVE, then
| when this is completed, change them back to MASTER.
|
| Finally, will I have to re-register the OS with MS after the format is
| changed?
|
| One way or another, this NTFS crap is going in the shitter where it
| belongs.
|
|
|
 
P

Paul

I know I can not change the format of the hard drive from NTFS to
FAT32 while I'm booted into XP on my laptop computer. But I have an
idea. What if I connect this hard drive to another computer as a
slave drive. Then use the ability of Partition Magic to reformat and
retain the data. Will this work?

I know I'll have to change the jumpers on the drive to SLAVE, then
when this is completed, change them back to MASTER.

Finally, will I have to re-register the OS with MS after the format is
changed?

One way or another, this NTFS crap is going in the shitter where it
belongs.

One problem I'd have with PM, is size limits. There are two that
come to mind.

In my copy of PM, there is an overall partition size limit. PM doesn't
seem to like to work on large ones, like around 200GB or so. You
may see "no options", if you try to do an operation on a large partition.

When making FAT32 partitions (brand new ones), PM calls the system
formatter. If the system formatter won't FAT32 format things larger
than 40GB, then PM will have the same limitation.

I don't know if the PM equivalent of a "convert" operation has such
a limit or not. I don't know how it does the conversion, to know.

PM also does a crappy job making Linux [email protected] partitions, but that's
a separate issue.

*******

Note - the following assumes you know a few simple commands in the
MSDOS window, for navigating to the folder containing your
executable files, then issuing the commands and so on. If you're
new to MSDOS, then it would take another post to explain that part...

You'll need to do a "vol" before doing anything else, then write down
the 8 digit identifier.

http://aumha.org/win5/a/ntfscvt.php

The Sysinternals VolumeID utility, can put the volume id back, after
a change has been made to the partition. Instead of using "vol", I
typically use Everest Home Edition (free) to check the value. Since you've
written the number down from the "vol" step, you know what value goes
back there later. Windows activation has the options of checking
the disk drive hardware serial number, as well as the volume id value.
Since volume ids are randomly assigned, after "format" type operations,
you may need its services to put back the original value (before
booting WinXP for the first time, and letting it notice the change).
I expect other hardware items count for more in activation, but if you've
changed a lot of hardware already (increased RAM say, changed CPU chip),
then the VolumeID change may be all it needs to tip over activation.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb897436

Next step, is review the disk contents. Any file on C:, which is
bigger than 4GB, is going to stop the conversion cold. If you use
the WinXP search box, to search for files, you might be able to enter
a size in there, like >4GB or whatever.

In the search, set "Specify size (KB)" to "at least" "1048576 KB"
to search for all files larger than 1GB. Your pagefile and hiberfil
may be that large. A movie could be larger than 4GB or 4194304 KB.
Move those files somewhere safe, as 4194304 KB is too large for FAT32.

If you needed to make a large, empty FAT32 partition, I'd do it
in two steps.

1) In diskmgmt.msc, you can create a new partition, but not format it.
This allocates space, and makes an entry in the partition table.

2) You can use the Ridgecrop formatter, to format things the OS won't
touch. You could do a 2TB FAT32 if you wanted. I've never even come
remotely close to that value. I accept the default cluster size
and use the simplest possible syntax for the command. This runs
in the command prompt, just like volumeid or vol does. This formatter
is very fast. I might format an 80GB partition to FAT32, in a second
or two.

http://www.ridgecrop.demon.co.uk/index.htm?fat32format.htm
http://www.ridgecrop.demon.co.uk/download/fat32format.zip

If you "copy" files from a bootable partition to another, you lose
the "Partition Boot Sectors". I haven't run into a method yet, to
reliably identify the location and back those up. They're in two
places on a partition, and one is supposed to be a backup copy.
Frequently, I find the second copy is garbage and not to be used.
(If the second copy is a backup copy, it's a poor backup!)

If you use a WinXP CD, boot to the recovery console, and do
"fixboot C:", that puts the Partition Boot Sectors back.
The tough part, is figuring out what the drive letter value
should be. On my machine, I actually have to type "fixboot D:",
to fix WinXP C:. I have one file at the root level of the
partition, that tells me I'm on the correct partition (as the
recovery console won't display the partition "label".

OK, so how do I copy files. I use Robocopy XP026.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/2006.11.utilityspotlight.aspx

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robocopy (version table, 2/3rds down the page...)

This is an example of copying a partition, to a blank backup partition
I've just made. The second command, is for when I copy it back later
(after the original partition has been formatted). The /mir option
stands for "mirror", which wipes out any extraneous files on the
destination partition. Use great care and get the "drive letters" right.
The log file gets a copy of every file copied. The summary in the log,
tells you how many files were processed. If the copy operation does
not support "permissions", the tool will tell you it's ignoring some
of the command line arguments given. As far as I know, this version of
command, would copy from NTFS to NTFS if necessary. I haven't tested
all four possible test cases, like NTFS to FAT32, FAT32 to NTFS etc.

robocopy C:\ F:\ /mir /copy:datso /dcopy:t /r:3 /w:2 /zb /np /tee /v /log:c_to_f.log

robocopy F:\ C:\ /mir /copy:datso /dcopy:t /r:3 /w:2 /zb /np /tee /v /log:f_to_c.log

*******

I generally log all the commands when I do one of those, and just
edit the parts later that I need to reuse. For example, this would be
for moving WinXP off, reformatting the partition, and moving the files
back.

vol E: (write down the 492A-AC63 it printed out in the MSDOS window)

robocopy E:\ J:\ /mir /copy:datso /dcopy:t /r:3 /w:2 /zb /np /tee /v /log:robocopy_e_to_j.log

fat32format E:

volumeid E: 492A-AC63

(copy pagefile and hiberfil manually, J: to E: - helps to be near the front of the partition.
Robocopy then doesn't have to copy them back, in the next command, and they're "skipped".)

robocopy J:\ E:\ /mir /copy:datso /dcopy:t /r:3 /w:2 /zb /np /tee /v /log:robocopy_j_to_e.log

recovery console, fixboot <--- means boot the WinXP CD, enter recovery console, "fixboot C:"
that puts back the Partition Boot Sectors, wiped by fat32format.

*******

Of course, you have your separate, independent backup of C:, before going on
an adventure, so if some operation fails along the way, you'll have an
escape plan. Be especially careful with the "fixboot", because it's hard to
tell which partition is which, down in the recovery console. Why they can't
conspicuously display the "label" applied to the partition, I'll never know.
I always label my partitions, as a double check when working on them.

And if you foul up the robocopy command, just about any partition could be
damaged by that. It's *very* dangerous. Ask me how I know this...

I would be doing those commands, from my second OS boot drive. In your case,
your second OS boot drive, is the one in that other computer you're about
to slave the drive to.

Do the "vol C:" command, *before* you move the disk drive to the
other computer, then write down the eight digit value. Don't wait
until the drive is slaved to the second computer to do it.

HTH,
Paul
 
J

John John MVP

One way or another, this NTFS crap is going in the shitter where it
belongs.

Is this still about the security warnings that you get when you download
files from the internet? Instead of trowing the baby out with the
bathwater why not fix the problem?

http://blog.case.edu/bes7/2009/06/1...ng_on_files_downloaded_with_firefox_30_and_35

As for Partition Tragic just be warned that it is at times far from
perfect when converting NTFS to FAT32 and data loss and screw-ups are
known to happen, don't try this without backing up your files, I would
never use a third party tool for this. The advantages of NTFS outweigh
the FAT32 advantages, personally I think that running XP on FAT32 is a
bad idea but it's your computer...

John
 
R

Rob

Is this still about the security warnings that you get when you download files from the internet? Instead of trowing the baby out with the bathwater why not fix the problem?

http://blog.case.edu/bes7/2009/06/1...ng_on_files_downloaded_with_firefox_30_and_35

As for Partition Tragic just be warned that it is at times far from perfect when converting NTFS to FAT32 and data loss and screw-ups are known to happen, don't try this without backing up your files, I would never use a third party tool for this. The advantages of NTFS outweigh the FAT32 advantages, personally I think that running XP on FAT32 is a bad idea but it's your computer...

John
+1
 
J

James D Andrews

(e-mail address removed) was thinking very hard and all he could come up with
was:
I know I can not change the format of the hard drive from NTFS to
FAT32 while I'm booted into XP on my laptop computer. But I have an
idea. What if I connect this hard drive to another computer as a
slave drive. Then use the ability of Partition Magic to reformat and
retain the data. Will this work?

I know I'll have to change the jumpers on the drive to SLAVE, then
when this is completed, change them back to MASTER.

Finally, will I have to re-register the OS with MS after the format is
changed?

One way or another, this NTFS crap is going in the shitter where it
belongs.

I'm curious why you choose FAT32 over NTFS considering its size
limitations.

--
-There are some who call me...
Jim


"Life is pleasant. Death is peaceful. It's the transition that's
troublesome."
- Isaac Asimov
 
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J

Jean Smith

I know I can not change the format of the hard drive from NTFS to
FAT32 while I'm booted into XP on my laptop computer.  But I have an
idea.  What if I connect this hard drive to another computer as a
slave drive.  Then use the ability of Partition Magic to reformat and
retain the data.  Will this work?

I know I'll have to change the jumpers on the drive to SLAVE, then
when this is completed, change them back to MASTER.  

Finally, will I have to re-register the OS with MS after the format is
changed?

One way or another, this NTFS crap is going in the shitter where it
belongs.

you could directly use the program Mayayana recommended, it could
directly help you change NTFS to FAT32 without data losing and vice
versa.
refer to this article which also introduce the detailed instructions...
:)
http://www.aomeitech.com/n2f/convert-ntfs-to-fat32.html
 
T

Thee Chicago Wolf [MVP]

I know I can not change the format of the hard drive from NTFS to
FAT32 while I'm booted into XP on my laptop computer. But I have an
idea. What if I connect this hard drive to another computer as a
slave drive. Then use the ability of Partition Magic to reformat and
retain the data. Will this work?

I know I'll have to change the jumpers on the drive to SLAVE, then
when this is completed, change them back to MASTER.

Finally, will I have to re-register the OS with MS after the format is
changed?

One way or another, this NTFS crap is going in the shitter where it
belongs.

if it has not been suggested already you might try Parted Magic
instead. But going from NTFS to FAT32 will give you problems, I
*guarantee* it. Continue at your own peril.

- Thee Chicago Wolf [MVP]
 
M

micky

I know I can not change the format of the hard drive from NTFS to
FAT32 while I'm booted into XP on my laptop computer. But I have an
idea. What if I connect this hard drive to another computer as a
slave drive. Then use the ability of Partition Magic to reformat and
retain the data. Will this work?

I know I'll have to change the jumpers on the drive to SLAVE, then
when this is completed, change them back to MASTER.

Finally, will I have to re-register the OS with MS after the format is
changed?

One way or another, this NTFS crap is going in the shitter where it
belongs.

I don't know if your plan will work or not, but how about this.

Connect your drive to another computer via the USB or eSATA port. To
do this, get an adapter like a Rosewill RCW618, 20 dollars when I
bought it online. This thing will have plenty of other uses, like
connecting a CD drive to CD-less laptop, etc.

Use XXClone, free for personal use, to copy every file from your HD to
a new partition on your functioning computerr.

Reformat your HDD.

Use XXCLONE to copy your files back to it.

If you are interested in this plan, let's spend more time on the
details. Post back.
 
J

jw

I don't know if your plan will work or not, but how about this.

Connect your drive to another computer via the USB or eSATA port. To
do this, get an adapter like a Rosewill RCW618, 20 dollars when I
bought it online. This thing will have plenty of other uses, like
connecting a CD drive to CD-less laptop, etc.

Use XXClone, free for personal use, to copy every file from your HD to
a new partition on your functioning computerr.

Reformat your HDD.

Use XXCLONE to copy your files back to it.

If you are interested in this plan, let's spend more time on the
details. Post back.

That sounds like a good idea. I'm actually thinking of getting a
bigger HD for the computer anyhow, so that way I can clone it and
transfer it to the new HD. Best of all, I'll still have the old drive
intact if something screws up. My current drive is 40g, I'd like to
find at least an 80g.

Tell me more, and where do I download that thing?

Thanks
 
J

James D Andrews

(e-mail address removed) snuck on to your hard drive to scribble:
That sounds like a good idea. I'm actually thinking of getting a
bigger HD for the computer anyhow, so that way I can clone it and
transfer it to the new HD. Best of all, I'll still have the old drive
intact if something screws up. My current drive is 40g, I'd like to
find at least an 80g.

Tell me more, and where do I download that thing?

Thanks

Shop around a little and you may be find a 160 GB cheaper than 80 GB.
I know at Newegg.com a 160 GB is $40 and a 80 GB is $50.

Of course, if you still want a FAT32 file system, you'll have to split
that drive into 2 partitions with a max at approximately 127 GB.

--
-There are some who call me...
Jim


"Distrust any enterprise that requires new clothes."
- Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)
 
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M

micky

(e-mail address removed) snuck on to your hard drive to scribble:

Shop around a little and you may be find a 160 GB cheaper than 80 GB.
I know at Newegg.com a 160 GB is $40 and a 80 GB is $50.

Newegg might have been t he place I got the Rosewill thing for 20
dollars. Although my memory has never been good for stuff like this.
 
M

micky

Works with PATA and SATA drives, and CD and DVD drives; 2.5, 3.5, and
5.25".

Or connecting anything other than a floppy temporarily to any computer
with a USB or eSATA port.
That sounds like a good idea. I'm actually thinking of getting a
bigger HD for the computer anyhow, so that way I can clone it and
transfer it to the new HD. Best of all, I'll still have the old drive
intact if something screws up. My current drive is 40g, I'd like to
find at least an 80g.

Tell me more, and where do I download that thing?

www.xxclone.com

As to details, I did something like this once and windows wouldn't
start. I had failed to make the Windows partition (the only partition
iirc) Active, so do that before disconnecting. Each hdd can have one
active partition iirc.

In my case, the laptop had a CD drive, so I used one of the HD
utilities on Hiren's boot CD to make the partition Active.

Also, XXClone has 3 or 4 options. It takes a while to learn them.
One is to create another entry in your boot.ini so that you can boott
from the clone you're making. But you can only do that if your on the
computer with the right hardware, that is, your laptop. You won't be
able to boot the computer your running xxclone on unless it's a
matching laptop. (Because that option is meant for backing up the
OS you are using now.)

I don't have xxclone on this computer or I'd go over those other 3
options.

There is a google group (so they call it) not Usenet, for xxclone, and
there is a yahoo list for xxcopy, written by the same guy, who
participates in the discussions.

XXclone is not an image copy. It's a file by file copy, with special
attention paid to system files that need special attention. For
win98 etc. he suggested xxcopy /clone but XP has special files that
need special attention.

There's a paid version of xxclone, not very expensaive, which allows
incremental backups, etc. The free one only does the whole
partition. (anoth3er reason to have your data in a separate
partition, because xxcopy etc. are adequate for data.)
 
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J

James D Andrews

micky banged his head on his keyboard to write :
Newegg might have been t he place I got the Rosewill thing for 20
dollars. Although my memory has never been good for stuff like this.

Yeah, that's where I got mine (earlier model, same thing, one of my
favorite "toys")

--
-There are some who call me...
Jim


It's a dangerous business, going out your door. You step onto the road,
and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be
swept off to.
-Samwise Gamgee quoting Bilbo Baggins, edited
 

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