I have a 160gb Maxtor sata HD. Somehow, after a lot of hardware swaps, reformats, a Windows 7 64-bit trial, I just noticed that it's showing only 93.3gb total size. When I check properties/hardware, it says it's a Maxtor 6L100M0. Should i just go find a driver for the 6L160MO instead and replace it? I'll most likely have to reformat the hard drive again, correct?
Also: I used to have a 5gig partition on the beginning of the disk, i used it for my swap file. Can i create a partition in windows for this, or do i have to create a boot disk? I don't have a a: drive, and currently only have blank dvds... all of the boot disk creators i've every found are dos programs that seem only meant for CD's, not DVDs.
Check the label on the drive, if the model is indeed 6L100M0 then it is a 100GB drive and you are not missing anything.
If the label on the drive gives you a different model number (which would be very, very unusual) then somehow the drive got the wrong firmware installed into it and, if that is the case, you're lucky it is working at all.
I understand that you are fully convinced that it is a 160GB drive and, you may be right but, look at the label for the model number.
The drive's model number cannot be changed by Windows. If Windows is showing
you a model number of 6L100M0, the first thing you should do is read the label on the drive to determine whether or not it is correct. If it is not correct then, changing the drive's firmware to the firmware that matches the model number on the label would give you the proper capacity.
Another possibility is that the 60GBs you are missing are simply currently unallocated. But that would not explain why you have a model that identifies a 100GB drive instead of a 160GB drive.
Seagate has a feature in their drives that allows you to re-specify the maximum capacity of a drive to something smaller, using their Seatools for DOS utility. It is for cases like mine - I wanted to put a large drive in an old machine with no BIOS update that supported 48-bit LBA, so it could only handle a hard drive up to 137 GB. I bought a 160 GB Seagate drive, used the utility to specify a new maximum value of the LBA, and it now believes it is a 137 GB drive and works just fine. Within that utility package also there's a way to undo this limit so the drive is back to full capacity.
Now, Maxtor is owned by Seagate and I THINK the have put the same feature in their drives, so you can check that possibility. Download (free) the Seagate utility and run it on your Maxtor drive to see what it says. BIG WARNING!! If you change the maximum LBA address on the drive, you very likely will lose all your data, so don't do this on any drive whose data you need! Back it all up and assume you will need to completely repartition and reformat the drive afterwards.
What makes me suspicious, though, is that you say you have a model number that indicates a 100 GB drive. The Seatools for DOS utility does NOT change the model number, not in the disk's controller board data, and certainly not on the label. When you run that utility, pay close attention to what it says the disk unit itself reports as its model number. This software tool is independent of Windows' reporting systems.