Win XP Shows Incorrect Disk Space Usage

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

This is not the standard 1000 vs 1024, FAT32 vs NTFS, etc.
problem. This is a weird one, folks:

Win XP Pro is showing that I have 40.3GB free on my 74.5GB
(formatted) hard drive (as shown in the "My Computer"
window). The problem is that I am only actually using
5.75GB on the drive. This amounts to a 28.45 GB (!) size
discrepancy! The drive is formatted as a single primary
NTFS partition (the drive is my C: boot drive), and the
reported drive size (74.5GB)is correct, as expected. Also,
using both Windows Explorer and DOS DIR, I examined disk
file usage (including hidden, system, and compressed
files). They both agree to ~ 5.75GB being used, although
both show the 24GB discrepancy as well (i.e., 40GB
Free/Unused). I also used Bulletproof FolderSizes v2.4 to
examine the disk usage, and it indicates that only 5.75 GB
is used, as well.

Disk manangement and Error-check show no faults on this
drive. I simply have not found any files taking up this
space! I cannot account for this discrepancy, and worse,
cannot fix it...

System/configuration specifics:
- Windows XP Professional, SP1 and SP2
- Hard Drive is Western Digital Caviar 80GB ATA/100
- Page (Swap) file is located on seperate drive

Further Configuration Specifics:
The system is running Award BIOS v4.51, so it does not
automatically recognize drives larger than 33GB. An update
is not available, so to get around this limitation, I am
using Western Digital's Data Lifeguard Utility, which
provides a dynamic disk overlay to "tricking" the system
into recognizing the drive as a 33 GB drive at boot-up,
with the full space being available after boot-up.
However, I do not believe this is causing the trouble
described above because:
- Win XP properly recognizes the correct drive size.
- The system ran for several days with correct disk usage
indications before the problem occured.

I have not been able to associate the problem with the
installation of any application software. In fact, I
uninstalled several applications that were installed prior
to the problem occurence to assure they were not the
culprits.

I am considering performing another clean install (very
time consuming but possible, since this is a relatively
new install), but without knowing the cause, I have no
assurance that the problem will occur again. My concern is
that the real/unused space will be rendered unusable by
this problem.

Any ideas, anyone?
1 answer Last reply
More about shows incorrect disk space usage
  1. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

    On Thu, 27 May 2004 23:58:03 -0700, "Danny Stone" <dansto@pacbell.net>
    wrote:

    >This is not the standard 1000 vs 1024, FAT32 vs NTFS, etc.
    >problem. This is a weird one, folks:
    >
    >Win XP Pro is showing that I have 40.3GB free on my 74.5GB
    >(formatted) hard drive (as shown in the "My Computer"
    >window). The problem is that I am only actually using
    >5.75GB on the drive. This amounts to a 28.45 GB (!) size
    >discrepancy! The drive is formatted as a single primary
    >NTFS partition (the drive is my C: boot drive), and the
    >reported drive size (74.5GB)is correct, as expected. Also,
    >using both Windows Explorer and DOS DIR, I examined disk
    >file usage (including hidden, system, and compressed
    >files). They both agree to ~ 5.75GB being used, although
    >both show the 24GB discrepancy as well (i.e., 40GB
    >Free/Unused). I also used Bulletproof FolderSizes v2.4 to
    >examine the disk usage, and it indicates that only 5.75 GB
    >is used, as well.
    >
    Besides normal application and data files there are other hidden
    system files:

    a) Restore database (see Volume Information folder)
    b) Page file
    c) Hibernation file
    d) etc

    These can take up a few GB in themselves. Open an command prompt
    and type DIR /AH to view hidden files in c:\.

    Peter Hutchison
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