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Trouble partitioning 3Tb and getting over 2Tb to take a drive letter

Posted on 2015-02-16
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Last Modified: 2015-03-12
I just had to have a new motherboard, RAM, and processor put into my computer.  I had already bought a new 250Gb SSD for the OS and a 3Tb drive for the data storage.  I now have Disk 1-- C: drive, the SSD with the OS, and Disk 0--a System Reserved 100Mb partition without a drive letter showing 70% free, a partition marked Healthy Primary Partition, 2047.90Gb with 100% free and a 746Gb unallocated partition with a black bar (on computer management) which will not allow me to give it a drive letter.  

How do I get my 746 Gb back?  The drive is completely blank as I have not added any applications or data.
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Question by:skennedy10
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8 Comments
 
LVL 70

Accepted Solution

by:
garycase earned 400 total points
ID: 40613439
Your 3TB drive has been initialized as an MBR drive, which limits it to 2TB (as you're seeing).    It needs to be re-initialized as a GPT drive -- then you can create a 3TB partition on it.

HOWEVER ... your issue is a bit more complex than that.   Whoever set up this system didn't do it correctly.   Your 3TB drive is the boot drive (with the 100MB System Reserved partition), with the OS on your SSD.    Unless you have a UEFI BIOS, you can't boot from a GPT disk ... so this could complicate things here.

The simplest and "cleanest" way to fix this, if you have the Windows 7 installation media, is to just start over.    Connect ONLY the SSD to your system.   Boot to the installation media;  DELETE the current partition on the SSD; and then install Windows 7 to the SSD.    This will result in both a 100MB System Reserved partition and the OS partition on that drive.    Once it's installed, shut down;  connect your 3TB drive; and reboot.   Now you can convert that drive to GPT and create a single 3TB partition for your data.
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Expert Comment

by:bbao
ID: 40613450
1. was the 3TVlB drive initialised by using GPT?

2. have you installed the latest driver of the storage controller?
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Assisted Solution

by:noxcho
noxcho earned 100 total points
ID: 40613697
As said above, start from scratch again.
Remove both drives from PC and connect only SSD. Then install Windows onto it (at installation step delete all partitions from it and let Windows create new ones).
After the installation is done - connect the 3TB drive. Make sure that in BIOS your SSD drive is the first boot drive.
Boot into Windows - go to Windows Disk Management (right click on My Computer - Manage - Disk Management) and delete partitions from 3TB drive. Then right click on this HDD - convert to GPT - when done create partitions on it as you wanted.
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Author Comment

by:skennedy10
ID: 40614320
From other reading of the posts to my question, this is what I will do.  
I will hold this open until tomorrow or so as I will be unavailable to work on this today.  
Thanks to all who have posted.  Points soon!
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Expert Comment

by:LeeTutor
ID: 40661697
I've requested that this question be deleted for the following reason:

Not enough information to confirm an answer.
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Expert Comment

by:bbao
ID: 40659719
any feedback from the author regarding the given comments?
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Author Closing Comment

by:skennedy10
ID: 40661699
Sorry this took so long to get my response.  I was able to follow the instructions both of you gave.  GaryCase was more thorough so I gave him more points.  Thanks, all 3 of you, for helping me fix what Frys Computer  did incorrectly.  The computer seems to be working fine and I have my giant drive split into two.  Boy, that SSD startup makes everything so much faster!  

Susan
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