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Windows Vista on a WD 150 GB Raptor

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August 8, 2007 3:58:54 AM

I recently installed Windows Vista ultimate on my new computer system which has a Wester Digital 150 GB Raptor. However, Windows Vista says it is only 139 GB. So I am wondering where the 11 GB went? Also, it seems that windows vista takes up a lot of room since my hard drvie is already 30% full.
August 8, 2007 10:57:26 AM

the 139GB is whats left over after the hdd is formatted, in general you lose about 7% of your total capacity to formatting. as far as vista taking up a lot of room, it does, about 10GB-12GB worth. as far as your raptor being 30% full of 139GB (just over 40GB), it sounds like thats just due to additional applications and other non vista related downloads.
August 8, 2007 11:12:04 AM

i think it is to do with vista honing quite so much sack that did it. 7% seems a bit much though...
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August 8, 2007 11:25:50 AM

7% is about right. a 500GB hdd for instance will only have 465GB available after formatting... so you lose 35GB for no reason other than due to formatting with the default NTFS settings (4KB clusters because the partition is over 2GB in size). and a 1TB hdd will lose 70GB due to formatting. however, a small 36GB raptor (37GB actual), will only lose 2.59GB after formatting, making the total usable capacity 34.41GB (7% loss)
a b G Storage
August 8, 2007 11:34:03 AM

My 300 gig drive under XP formats to 279 usable gigs.
300gig x 7% = 21gig, exactly what I am missing.
Choirbass is right on.
a b G Storage
August 8, 2007 12:03:37 PM

You're not 'losing' anything. It's all about how Microsoft and Western Digital calculates a Gigabyte. Microsoft considers 1,024mb as 1GB, while WD considers 1,000mb as 1GB. So Windows will naturally show a 'smaller' capacity for that reason.
August 8, 2007 12:04:58 PM

Actually, if you read the fine print on a 500Gb drive, it says that the capacity is 500.000.000 Kb. We all know that 1Mb is 1024Kb not 1000 so if you devide twice by 1024 you get that 500.000.000Kb is 476,8Gb. I know that when formating, a master table is created that takes up some space on the HDD. 35Gb on a 500Gb drive seems extreme size for this table while
11Gb seems more reasonable. Correct me if I wrong please.
August 8, 2007 1:14:08 PM

There are 1000000000 (10^3) bytes in a storage / bandwidth gigabyte, but 1073741824 (2^30) in a file size / memory gigabyte.

1000000000 / 1073741824 = 0.931

Therefore Choirbass is spot on with his 7%

August 8, 2007 3:29:34 PM

The endless debate over this issue is really becoming tedious. Especially when it really isn't an issue at all.

First off, I don't know who coined this "7% rule" nonsense, but it's misleading. While the difference in hard drive manufacturer-defined space (powers of 10) and OS manufacturer defined space (powers of 2) result in a (1000/1024)^3 = 6.86% difference in reported space, this is only valid when comparing Gigabytes. If you're comparing Megabytes, the difference is 4.64%, if comparing Terabytes, the difference jumps to 9.05%. This becomes misleading and difficult to generalize at best, and easy to be completely wrong by accidentally using the wrong prefix at worst.

Second, there is this perpetual myth out there that the "loss" in space is attributable to the formatting overhead. It is not. First of all, formatting overhead for the NTFS file system is a few dozen MB at most. Not a few dozen GB, a few dozen MB. Here is a screenshot of a brand new 750GB drive formatted as NTFS:



A whopping 90MB has been used for the MBR, Boot Sector, and MFT. Piddly squat. Drop in the bucket. 0.012 % Conclusion: There is virtually no loss in usable space due to formatting.

Third, there is no "loss" in space at all. Look at the numbers. Drive size: 750,153,720,000 bytes. Looks like 750 GB to me. SO WHAT if Windows reports it as 698 GB? Does it matter? I have 750,063,259,648 bytes of space available. It doesn't matter if you call that 750GB, 698GB, or 3.14159265 Megacupcakes, they're all talking about the exact same amount of space. And it's exactly what the drive manufacturer claimed it to be. And it's exactly what you bought and paid for.

End of discussion. :pfff: 
August 8, 2007 4:04:24 PM

Freakin Owned.
August 8, 2007 5:31:11 PM

SomeJoe, agree with everything you said except that OS manufacturers define Gb as the power of 2. You make it sound like it's the OS manufacturer's idea, when, in fact binary (or hex, which is quicker to write) is the natural and preferred system in all computing. It is indeed the drive manufacturers that perverted it and used the base of 10 (because 750 Gb sounds much nicer then 698 Gb).
August 8, 2007 6:07:35 PM

russki said:
SomeJoe, agree with everything you said except that OS manufacturers define Gb as the power of 2. You make it sound like it's the OS manufacturer's idea, when, in fact binary (or hex, which is quicker to write) is the natural and preferred system in all computing. It is indeed the drive manufacturers that perverted it and used the base of 10 (because 750 Gb sounds much nicer then 698 Gb).


Well, you can make a point that base 2 mathematics is standard in computing and drive manufacturers are rating their capacities in a non-standard way.

However, you can also make a point that the strict definition of System International (SI) prefixes are based on powers of 10. Thus, the computer/OS manufacturers are the ones who are really taking liberties with the prefix definitions.

Both of those points are equally valid, but neither solves the debate (which doesn't need "solving" any more than the coexistence of metric and imperial units needs to be "solved".) The bottom line is that when things are in different units, you can always convert from one unit system to the other. Pure and simple.

Also, base 2 is the standard in quoting memory and hard drive capacities in computers, but data rates are always given in powers of 10. (i.e. Ethernet transmission speeds, modem transmission speeds, even SATA and IDE transfer rates are given in powers of 10). So saying that the computing standard is always based on powers of 2 is not entirely true.
August 8, 2007 10:01:02 PM

Does it really matter on specifics? it is how it is.
August 8, 2007 11:06:00 PM

Leo was the correct one here. As he stated the manufacturers calculate a Gig as 1000 MB and Windows calculates a gig to equal 1024 MB you are losing nothing.
August 9, 2007 1:08:04 AM

You don't lose 7% you get lied to that you are being sold that extra 7%. Also you lose 8mb for the swap partition. it is not divided by 1024 it is divided by 1024(GB)*1024(MB)*1024(KB)
August 9, 2007 1:10:16 AM

SomeJoe: valid points. My points was that, fundamentally, computing goes to the transistors, with an on and off state, the bit is the foundation of everything, then we have bytes, etc. blah blah blah. You are right, this is a pointless debate (but for whatever reason I like this kind of debates...)

And yes, knowledgeable people should have no problem converting, but the majority of people, unfortunately, are not all that knowledgeable and get caught up in the numbers / marketing / etc.

(Btw I was not attacking you in any way)
August 9, 2007 1:57:55 AM

russki said:
SomeJoe: valid points. My points was that, fundamentally, computing goes to the transistors, with an on and off state, the bit is the foundation of everything, then we have bytes, etc. blah blah blah. You are right, this is a pointless debate (but for whatever reason I like this kind of debates...)

And yes, knowledgeable people should have no problem converting, but the majority of people, unfortunately, are not all that knowledgeable and get caught up in the numbers / marketing / etc.

(Btw I was not attacking you in any way)


No problem, and no offense taken. I enjoy the debates too, by the way. It's just that I've seen this question/issue posted about 4 times in the last 2 weeks, and it seems no matter how you try to explain it, some people refuse to listen, and instead insist that they're being screwed out of several GB of space.

This is a pet peeve of mine, because it's symptomatic of a growing trend in our society that instead of learning and understanding things and realizing that not everything in life is perfect or ideal, the initial reaction these days is to assign blame to someone and demand justice. i.e.

Correct (Rare): "Oh, these GB and those GB aren't exactly the same? Ah I see. It would be more convenient if they were, but they're not, so I'll deal with it." :) 

More Typical: "These GB don't match those GB. They're screwing us! Me & my lawyer are gonna sue." :fou: 

Apparently, worldwide matching GB measurements were promised to everyone along with their free rose garden. :sarcastic: 
August 9, 2007 2:55:12 AM

sorry about that, i had just read that, it seemed right, but evidently its not.
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