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4TB drive in Windows 7

Posted on 2013-05-15
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Last Modified: 2016-11-23
Running a Dell Precision 490 TAG # DMFDBB! Bios A08
Windows 7 64 bit

I just purchased a 4TB WD4001FAEX hard drive to replace my C drive, I would like to use the whole 4TB as one partition if possable. I know I need to run it as a MDR drive type and format as NTFS so I can run Windows 7 64 bit on it.

But how can I use the whole 4TB drive as my C drive? if that is possable?
If I have to settle for two partitions I will, I did try to add the drive but my system will only allocate 2TB and the rest 1.6TB I cannot partition or do anything with it.

Any suggestions?
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Question by:jsarinana
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8 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:tailoreddigital
ID: 39168730
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Haresh Nikumbh
ID: 39168777
you need to format disk with GPT partition which will support 4 tb volume for boot os
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Accepted Solution

by:
Lee W, MVP earned 500 total points
ID: 39168881
Links are good sometimes.  On the other hand, this is a simple answer:

You CANNOT use ONLY a 4 TB, partitioned or not, and have access to the total drive space.

There is a limitation of MBR disk formats that the largest partition you can create is about 2TB and you cannot create more than 2TB worth of partitions.  So in order access the full size of the disk you need to make the disk a GUID Partition Table (GPT) disk.  This is easily done in Disk Management BUT you cannot make a Boot/System drive a GPT disk UNLESS your computer uses UEFI instead of BIOS.

To effectively see and use all the space, you'll need to continue using a drive of at most 2TB as your C: drive and use the 4TB drive as a D: drive (which can be further partitioned or left as one big partition),  Since it won't be your boot/system drive, a BIOS based system CAN use a GPT "slave" disk without a problem.
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:Richard Schilke
ID: 39176462
I would advise against using the whole partition as a system drive even if you can! The best way to get the most space and offer redundancy and separate data from the rest of the OS is to split in 3. 500gb system C:, 100gb swap D:, and the balance as data 3.4Tb E:
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 39176747
A separate swap partition is a waste of space.  But set the file to a fixed size to prevent fragmentation.

(A separate swap DRIVE makes sense, but thats only if you have a separate physical drive.

A separate data drive can be useful but it can also depend on what you're doing and how much space you have.
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Expert Comment

by:Richard Schilke
ID: 39177802
I use a separate swap drive to minimise swap file fragmentation.
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LVL 96

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 39178139
Which isn't necessary if you used a fixed size drive.
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Author Closing Comment

by:jsarinana
ID: 39205203
I ended up using a 2TB drive for the O.S. and the 4TB drive as a second drive (set as GPT) to do backups
thanks
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