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Change Hard Disk Drive Letters in XP

Posted on 2004-09-05
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Last Modified: 2012-08-14
I have two hard disk drives that I need to change the letter on. One is operating on XP and the other is operating on Win 98se. I need the xp drive to be changed from "G" to "C".  When  I try to change it, I get a error message saying that it can't be done while the drive is the boot drive.I can change the 98 drive from XP Is there way that I can change it from 98 without causing problems in XP?
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Question by:SuperSnooper
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dis1931 earned 200 total points
ID: 11986341
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by:tosh9iii
ID: 11986428
If you have partition magic, you could use DriveMapper:

"About DriveMapper

When you create, delete, hide, and unhide partitions, your drive letters can change, causing applications not to run because application shortcuts, initialization files, and registry entries refer to incorrect drives. DriveMapper is a wizard that lets you easily update drive letter references."

However,

"Using DriveMapper with Multiple Operating Systems

If you run multiple operating systems, you should reinstall applications rather than use DriveMapper. The following issues make using DriveMapper in a multiple operating system environment difficult and error-prone:

·      Drive letter assignments are based on the file systems supported by an operating system. If you do not put all FAT32, and NTFS partitions after all FAT partitions, drive letters will change depending on the operating system currently running, and DriveMapper may be unable to correctly identify which changes should be made.

·      Registry settings are changed for the current operating system only. If you manually run DriveMapper from another operating system, references in files will already be changed in the current operating system and further changes will introduce errors in the other operating systems."
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by:raybass
ID: 11986891
Bad idea.  Every program file, every registry entry, every everything is referencing the "G" drive.  If you are somehow successful in changing it to C, it's likely none of your programs will work, and more likely you won't be able to boot into windows.

Wipe and reload is your best option, saving data first...  unplug any zip drives and other hard drives before you do and you'll be ensured an installation on "C".
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Expert Comment

by:MDaukas
ID: 11989809
Go into control panel - Administrative tools - Computer management - disk management.  There you can change drive letters!
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by:turbo76542
ID: 11991713
I'm with raybass.  You cannot change the boot drive letter at all.  You will have to reinstall windows from scratch.
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by:dis1931
ID: 11992066
Once again here is how to do it...

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;223188

and read the article all the concerns voiced above are discussed and it tells you when it is appropriate to do this...and when it is not.

Dis
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by:turbo76542
ID: 11995611
I have tried using that article before and for some reason it did not work at all because you cannot change the system or boot drive letter.
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by:dis1931
ID: 12000268
Turbo76542,

The system/Boot drive letter can be changed but it shouldn't unless you know the ramifications.  It is done through the registry and can't be done through other windows methods.  However it is possible.

The article specifically describes how to change system or boot drive letter, i have used it on one occasion and it worked.  However it should only be done under certain circumstances which again are described in the MS KB article.  

Dis
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by:dheeruthakur
ID: 12006735
your both drive are FAT or NTFS ? basically windows XP is Upper version so you are easily edit your drive letter of windows 98 partition but not through 98.
           you send me the details of both partition.

dheerendra
(network engineer HCL Infosystem Ltd.)
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Expert Comment

by:daneiges79
ID: 14813275
I have the same problem after installing XP with a ZIP drive, I went on the Microsoft Knowledge base as it says here, but it doesn t work, I don't know what to do.
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Expert Comment

by:daneiges79
ID: 14813289
Dis

Here is what MSKB says, so what if its an existing drive ???

MSKB: Follow the procedure that is described in this article only to recover from a drive letter change, not to change an existing computer drive to something else.
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