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Mega Hard Drive/Drive Overlay Software

Posted on 2001-06-12
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Last Modified: 2013-12-28
Greetings,

I have a 30gig HD that will be installed but I do not desire to use the overlay software included that allows recognition of that drive at full, single-partitioned, capacity.
Can I DOS fdisk the drive into smaller partions that the computer's BIOS can handle, and thereby skipping ANY installation of the overlay software? If so, are there any dangers in doing this?

Thanks
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Question by:pallidin
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11 Comments
 
LVL 10

Expert Comment

by:trekie1
ID: 6184445
the partitions wouldn't have anything to do with the ability of the comp to reconize a drive that size,,,,eather it will or it wont and if it wont ,,then upgrade the bios,,,,,unless this is an older comp I dont see any reason the comp couldn't handle it,even then you can prob update the bios if necessory,,,,I never use a drive overlay unless its completely necessory,by that I mean old comp,1996 model back,,,,,,what do you mean ,are there any dangers in doing this ??   do you mean will it hurt the drive or comp???  I hardly think so,,,(no)
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LVL 10

Expert Comment

by:trekie1
ID: 6184464
I would set the drive up the way I wanted it (1 single partition or as many as you want,,,useing fdisk,,,partition magic,,,like I said if the comp reconizes the full size of the drive ,,make the partitions the way you want,,,if it dont reconize the full size of drive then update bios,,,,your not going to hurt any thing unless you screw the bios update up (if required):>) it certainly wont hurt the drive
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LVL 7

Expert Comment

by:jlauster
ID: 6184493
If your BIOS limits you to 2GB partitions, you will not be able to see the full capacity as you will not be able to set up more than one primary and one extended partition. All others must be part of the extended partition.
The only way around this without any overlay or software such as Partition Magic, is as trekie1 suggest, with a BIOS update, which may or may not solve the limitation problem.
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LVL 16

Expert Comment

by:Kyle Schroeder
ID: 6186846
The BIOS is not the cause of the 2GB limitation, its a limitation of Win95-A (OSR 1).  Win95A only supports partitions up to 2GB, which is the maximum partition size for a FAT-16 partition.  As for using the whole drive without overlay software, it depends on how new your system is.  What speed/type processor is in the system? Do you know the model of the motherboard (systemboard)?  These are the things that will make a difference.  A Pentium-166 board won't support a harddrive of that size without the BIOS translation software (i.e. EZ-Drive). Even some Pentium II boards might require a BIOS update to use the full drive...this is why we need the model/manufacturer.

-d
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LVL 3

Author Comment

by:pallidin
ID: 6188701
OK, let me see if I am getting this correctly: The nature of normal partitioning is such that a hard drive has one primary, one extended, and however many user-defined logical drives under the extended partion. No problem, already knew that.
So, since the logical drives are actually "sub-partitions" so-to-speak, of the extended partition, then the BIOS and OS must be compliant in handling the total size of the extended partition AND the logical drives.
If that's true, then no matter how small I make the extended partion and logical drives, the TOTAL size of those two catagories is the barrier in older machines. Am I even close to getting it on this point???
For clarification, the reason I am asking this is not machine-specific. Rather, I want to use, say, a 30-gig HD to perform HD imaging and such on clients computers, which may vary considerably in BIOS compliance.
Also, would PartitionMagic help to chop up this "tech drive" BEFORE remote use in an appropriate way to allow me this diversified use- such as actually creating a second or even third extended partition to allow proper drive recognition without the overlay software.
Hmmm... I think I'll increase points to 100 since I did not offer these clarifications in my original question.
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LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:rayt333
ID: 6189301
Humm, to do what you want without the aid of DM software in the older computers, then your best bet is to use three (3) seperate HD depending on the computer you are working on.
Assuming at least P class computers then I would recomend (1) 2GB, (2) 8GB (3) your 30GB, this would cover just about every computer with the BIOS limitations
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LVL 10

Accepted Solution

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trekie1 earned 400 total points
ID: 6189358
a friend of mine use's a parallel port backpack  with a 40 gig HD split up with partition magic into several fat16 ,,fat 32 and ntfs partitions for just what your wanting to do,,,,,,it installs from dos or from with in windows,,,,older comps with 95A just see the fat partitions and winnt sees the fat or ntfs and of course theres the fat 32 partitions for most use's 95B/98/me,,,,never used it myself but it mite be worth a look see,,,,he claims it works great
for what your wanting to do the 30gig just split up into several partitions useing fdisk would prob be fine for most comps but when you work on a old comp,,,then you probley would have a problem sooner or later......personaly I do what Ray suggested,,,and I suggest the same,,,split up the 30 with fdisk or partition magic and keep a couple smaller drives handy for the oldeys
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LVL 3

Author Comment

by:pallidin
ID: 6189517
It seems everyone is giving great advice. Thank you! Trekie seems to be right-on with what I desire in this special case, as I do not expect full-capacity access(as explained in both my original and subsequent post), and separate HD's are a given solution to what I am actually hoping to avoid, if possible. I will briefly await any other comments.
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LVL 3

Author Comment

by:pallidin
ID: 6193487
Thanks Trekie, I think you have pointed me in right direction.
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LVL 7

Expert Comment

by:jlauster
ID: 6193520
Partition Magic is a great tool. Hope you enjoy playing and learning with it. I know I have.

John
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LVL 10

Expert Comment

by:trekie1
ID: 6193647
anytime pallidin
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