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volume has 22% free space, but only 13% is available for use by Disk Defragmenter

Posted on 2005-05-02
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-14
I have recently converted a FAT volume to NDIS using the command line utility convert.  The volume is a data disk not a system disk. It does not have page files on it. Explorer reports 22% free.  So does Disk Defragmenter in the overview. When you analyze the disk, a lot of space is displayed in the colour of System files.  I suspect that this is the 9% of the volume that is 'free space, but is not available for use by disk defragmenter'.  I award 500 points to the first solution that allows me to make that free space available - without earsing or formatting the disk, without data loss.  Perhaps extra for a good explanation.
Question by:ErichN
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LVL 11

Expert Comment

ID: 13911093
U using XP or 2000 Pro?

Windows XP Professional reserves a portion of the volume for the MFT known as the MFT zone. Neither Disk Defragmenter nor the defrag command moves files into this area.

Disk Defragmenter in Windows 2000 cannot move files smaller than 16 clusters, so free space smaller than 16 clusters is ignored. In Windows XP Professional, Disk Defragmenter can defragment files of any cluster size.

Author Comment

ID: 13911194
I use Win2k pro.

I guess all of the above means:  that's the way it is. You can't do anything about it?

By the way: I can move a big file onto the disk and it will take up that space.  But as soon as I delete the file, it is marked again as system area.  

By the way this area is contiguous.
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LVL 11

Accepted Solution

Eric earned 2000 total points
ID: 13911235
sounds like that MFT zone.. they said it will get used.   I think your screwed.  They say for a disk to be optimal you should not use more than 70% anyway.

Author Comment

ID: 13911270
You did not exactly fullfill the condition for the 500 points - on the other hand you did supply an excellent explanation - and I must say a very clear analysis:  I think your screwed.

points go to you
Thank you for the speedy attention to my question.
LVL 11

Expert Comment

ID: 13911295
hehe. .  no problem.

Maybe im just beaten down by microsoft to the point wehre I just do what they say :o

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