Okay so my hard drive died, went out and bought a brand new one, installed it, got everything back up and running and what not.
So then today, i tried installing a program, and it told me i didnt have enough space in order to do so. Confused seeing as i just installed a 640GB hard drive and there was no way it could be close to full, i had to look up what was using this much space. I went to my computer to check out my drives and it says it only has 100 GB. I literally just bought a brand new 640 GB one, and its not like they accidentally put a 100GB hard drive in a 640Gb box. It also had the 640GB on the label and everything. Anyone know what may be causing this, or am i just screwed and received a 100GB drive that was advertised as otherwise.
Any new HDD must have two operations performed before you can actually use it - and often they are "bundled" into what looks like one step. They are: Create a Primary Partition that is bootable; and, Format that Partition. If you Install a Windows OS, these two steps will be done for you before the actual Install process begins. If you clone from an old drive to a new one they also will be done. BUT some of the clone software I've used defaults to making the cloned Partition on the new drive the SAME SIZE as the one on the old drive, even though the new drive is much bigger. You CAN change that by using their menu systems, but that is the default.
You don't tell us how you "installed it, got everything back up and running and what not." Did you clone from your old drive to the new one? Did you do a fresh Install? Did you have a full backup you used to restore to the new unit?
Whatever the process was, it appears that it Created on your new drive a Primary Partition of only 100 GB or so. This means that the rest of your new HDD is still there and empty. It is called "Unallocated Space" on that HDD.
Before going any further, let's check one thing. Older computers from around 2000 sometimes can NOT use an HDD over 137 GB if it is an IDE type. But this does NOT apply to any SATA drive, so if your new unit is SATA, don't worry about your hardware. IF your new unit is IDE, though, you'll need to check whether your machine can use a drive this large. First clue: what was the size of your old drive? If it was over 128 GB in Windows' way of counting (137 GB according to the HDD maker), your machine CAN use such large drives, so don't worry.
NEXT, however, is your OS. Windows XP in the original version could NOT use such large drives. The thing required (Support for "48-bit LBA") was added in SP1 and has been part of all subsequent Windows. So, IF you are now using the old original version of Win XP, you need to make some changes. Otherwise, forget this, too.
Once the questions of machine ability and Windows version are settled and you are sure you CAN use a disk of this size, you have three options from where you are.
1. Start over again. Make SURE you have all your stuff backed up someplace else. Then Delete the existing Partition and Create a new one that is the full size of the 640 GB unit, then Format it. NOW you re-Install the OS and all your apps and restore your data. IF you are Installing from a Windows CD, its early menus will let you choose the Delete the old Partition and Create a new one and set its size. On the other hand, if you are re-cloning from your old HDD (assuming it is still limping along), make sure you find out how to set up the cloning software to set the size the way you want.
2. Don't worry about all that. Leave the 100 GB Partition in place and use it as your boot "drive". (Any Partition is treated by Windows as a separate "drive" with its own letter name, even if it is actually on the same HDD unit as another "drive".) Use Windows' built-in tool Disk Management to Create another Primary Partition (you can have up to 4 on one HDD) from the Unallocated Space, and use it as a second drive where you store all the data. You will probably want to change Windows' defaults about where it stores data, and you may want to re-Install some of your app software on the new "drive" to avoid filling up the first one of 100 GB.
3. Buy and use a utility like Partition Magic which can Extend the existing Partition into the Unallocated Space, effectively adding as much as you like (probably all of it) to your existing C: drive. Windows itself will not do this job on a boot Partition, but several third-party utilities will.
Post what you situation is and how you got here, and what progress you make. If you need more help, we can advise.
Sorry for being so vague. Wasn't aware so much info was needed. Still new to this whole thing. It was a fresh install because when taking the old one out, i accidentally broke off a piece that was necessary to plug in the sata port from the power supply. So the old drive was the exact same size as well.
But Thank you paperdoc. Appreciate all the information. I'll try your suggestions.
OK, you have a semi-hidden backup Partition of 100 MB, a main boot Partition called C: of 100 GB, a second partition of about 50 GB called D:, and a big chunk of Unallocated Space. I would guess you got there by cloning your old drive, or maybe by some Restore process. Does not really matter.
What is on your D: drive? Is it completely empty, or does it have stuff you need? I suggest three options:
1. IF you need the stuff on D:, leave it alone and use Disk Management to Create a fourth Primary Partition (not bootable) in the Unallocated Space - use up all the available space for this one. This will become another "drive" with its own letter name and you can use it.
2. IF you want to keep the stuff on D but do NOT want any more separate "drives", Disk Management should let you Expand the D: drive to add in all the Unallocated Space that follows it. D: is not your boot drive, so it should work. You do this by RIGHT-clicking on the D: drive and choosing the Expand option, then setting parameters. BUT, to be safe, I recommend you make a backup of the D: drive before proceeding, just in case something goes wrong! Oh, there's one other little thing that could get in the way. I said Disk Management will not do this for a boot drive, but it also will not do this if your Paging file is on that D: drive. Usually that is not the case, but some people (like me) deliberately relocate it off the C: drive. If this is your situation just temporarily get rid of the Paging File while you Expand, then re-create it later.
3. IF the D: drive has NOTHING you want to keep, use Disk Management to Delete it. Then RIGHT-click on the (now larger) Unallocated Space and Create a new Primary Partition (not bootable) that takes up the whole space. It can become your new huge D: drive.
I figured the easiest solution would be to great a new partition to use up the remaining space on my hard drive. So i went ahead and did that. Thanks for the help you two.
But one more question, is there any way i can go into some sort of setting to make that new partition my primary one so that i dont have to change drives everytime i try to download or install something?
Yes. Within Windows you can change where your default data files will go. That is, you can set where the "My Documents" folder is placed. If you change that, then copy all the stuff from the "My Documents" folder on your C: drive to the new "My Docs" folder, that will take care of the data files you create.
You also should be aware that most application software has places where you can specify its default locations for data files and some auxiliary materials like pre-designed document formats.
The location of the app software itself, though, is a bit trickier. Basically that is set at the time it is Installed, and a bunch of settings are placed in the Windows Registry. For any NEW software you acquire and install, you can almost always specify during the Install process exactly where it will go - so you just have it put on your new large "drive", rather than on C:. But for stuff that is already installed on your C: drive, if you want to move it, you will basically have to Uninstall it, then re-Install it and specify the new location on the new drive.