incorrectly formatted harddrive

Posted on 2003-03-30
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-26
I recently installed a new Maxtor 20G HD in my daughters computer.  It has a XE100 Plus mobo and is running Win98. I forgot to have the mobo automatically detect the HD before I formatted it so it was formatted as the old 4G HD.  My system has a newer Shuttle mobo, also running Win98.  Is there any way I can reformat the HD to 20G or am I stuck with a 4G, (20G,) HD?  I was going to reformat it on my system but mine sees it as a 4G HD also.
Question by:rich12321
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Accepted Solution

jwitt98 earned 300 total points
ID: 8234404
You will need to delete the 4G partition and create a new 20G partition.  Note:  doing this will erase all the data on the drive so back anything up you want to keep first.  
Boot to the win98 boot disk.
At the a:\ pompt type "fdisk"
enable large disk support when asked.
use fdisk to delete the primary partition.
Create a new primary dos partition using all the available disk space.
Then reboot again to the win98 boot disk.
at the a: prompt type "format C"
After the format you can reinstall windows.

Not: this is all assuming your disk is set up correctly in the bios and that your bios supports a hardrive this size.

Expert Comment

ID: 8234422
Before doing the above, in your bios, set the ide detection to auto as opposed to user.  If the bios detects a 20G drive, then your in business.  If it detects an 8.4G drive, then your bios likely doesn't have int 13 extensions in which case you will have to enable int 13 extensions in the bios setup or upgrade the bios in order to take advantage of the full 20G hard drive.

Expert Comment

ID: 8234957
Also, one of the best programs I have found for quick partition management is Part at
Boot with a floppy, or win98 bootable cd, and the run part off of a disk.  Allows you to make partitions much quicker than FDisk.

If setting the harddrive to auto or doing the Autodetection in the bios of your daughters computer correctly sees the drive, then you won't need to put it into yours.

Expert Comment

ID: 8235611
I bet the drive has a C: and D: drive, right?
When you Partitioned the drive, using a Startup Disk to run FDISK, the first question you are asked is: Would you like to use Large Disk Support? [Y/N].  Large Disk Support is Fat32, which supports PARTITIONS larger than 2GB. If you choose NO for the question, the Primary DOS partition must be no larger than 2GB, and the Extended DOS partition (which contains drives D: - Z:) must be no larger than 2GB. If you choose YES at the prompt, partitions can be any size you like (TERABYTES).

Most likely you were limited to using 4GB of the drive when partitioning (2GB for each partition), and the only way to recover the missing 16GB is to repartition using Large Disk Support.

Not a solution to the "question", but to interject my opinion:
That Hard Drive is worth more than the rest of the system in its entirety. Don't you think 9 years of use has gotten your money's worth? Dude, get your daughter a DELL (or build her a newer system).  8^)

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