Computer HD Question

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by Similitude, Apr 19, 2009.

  1. Similitude

    Similitude Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Hey Guys. I think this is the right place for this, but if not my bad and just redirect me.

    I got this used Laptop a few days ago. Acer Aspire 5610Z. Not top of the line, but light years better then what I have now.

    So I reformated C Drive and deleted everything off of D Drive as that didnt reformat.

    But now I'm looking at D Drive and its saying I only have 62GB out of 69GB free even though D Drive shows Zero files on it outside of Sample Pictures and the like. So I'm trying to figure out if it would be ok to Format the D Drive. C Drive has a Windows Icon on it, so I'm sure thats where all the Windows Info is, but I want to make sure its kosher to Format D before I do it.

    Thanks for help in advance!
     
  2. cultcross

    cultcross Janitor of the Mind Palace Moderator

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    Try going to C:\Windows
    If you can, Windows is on C: and it won't be affected by formatting D:
    If you want to double check, enable 'show hidden and system files/folders' under 'folder options' and look in the D: root folder - if theres nothing in there, there's nothing on the drive.

    I wouldn't pay too much attention to the 'filespace remaining' indicator, they're not wonderfully accurate. Particularly if you emptied D: by manually deleting stuff, the indicator is probably showing as 'used' space which is actually ready to be overwritten.
     
  3. Rii

    Rii Rear Admiral

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    It's likely the missing space is occupied by a hidden recovery partition which can be used to restore the system to its original factory state in the event of Bad Times™.
     
  4. cultcross

    cultcross Janitor of the Mind Palace Moderator

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    Is D: actually a separate physical drive? Or a partition? Because it is usual practice for Acer to put a 'recovery partition' onto the main drive of their laptops, which as Rii says, is used as a factory-restore backup.
     
  5. Jadzia

    Jadzia on holiday Premium Member

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    it is probably space taken up by hidden files.

    Try enabling, 'show hidden files' in the folder options, and see if they show up. Note there are two degrees of hidden in windows. So some might still be in stealth.

    The partition idea: it would be a separate drive which is not part of this 69GB drive. Virtual partitioning is done with hidden folders, which is what this space might be.
     
  6. Similitude

    Similitude Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    How can I tell if its a Partition or another drive?
     
  7. Similitude

    Similitude Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Showing Hidden Files showed about 2 gigs more of junk that I deleted but im still 5 Gigs or so short and its not showing anything else besides the sample folders.
     
  8. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    Keep in mind that a formatted HD is going to be smaller than the advertised capacity. For example, a formatted 60 GB might yield 57 GB. That's just the nature of the file system. That being said, if you're on Vista or XP, you can simply go into Control Panel > Disk Management, and then click on your hard drive. It will show up as a logical drive, and if it's partitioned, you'll see the D drive as a partition there. If it's physical, there will be two separate drives listed as logical drives.

    You can quick format Drive D and it will wipe all of those hidden files.

    J.
     
  9. Roger Wilco

    Roger Wilco Admiral Admiral

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    Just format d:, what's the worst that could happen? Having to reinstall windows?
     
  10. hyzmarca

    hyzmarca Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Go into the BIOS (Usually F2 or Delete during startup). It should show what physical drives you have attached to your system.

    There are also various utilities that can differentiate physical drives from partitions.
     
  11. Small White Car

    Small White Car Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It's good to check, but I seriously can't imagine it's NOT a partition. The only laptops I've seen with 2 physical drives in them are ones that the owner went well out of their way to make it happen. Like, they removed the DVD drive to put another hard drive in.

    I'd be shocked if the OP managed to buy a laptop with 2 hard drives without knowing it.
     
  12. Garrovick

    Garrovick Guest

    With some computers, Like Compac and E-Machines, "D" drive contains the files to reinstall Windows OEM the way the computer originally came.. If that partition gets formated, it's off to the store to buy Vista. Then hit the web and re-download all of the drivers.

    People should be very cautious about deleting or formating that strange partition on their hard drive.
     
  13. Similitude

    Similitude Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yea I think perhaps I will just leave it for now. Avast and Malewarebytes aren't seeing anything wrong with it, So I'll let it be.
     
  14. Brent

    Brent Admiral Admiral

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    It is normal because the actual capacity does not equal the formatted capacity.
     
  15. Kommander

    Kommander Commodore Commodore

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    [​IMG]

    It's happened before...
     
  16. Similitude

    Similitude Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well It should be 80, But Its actually 69 because they are never that big. I just want to know why only 64 of the 69 is available.
     
  17. Similitude

    Similitude Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    One final question. Does anyone know why Google Chrome, AIM and a few other programs will show up on my account on Vista (I'm the administrator) but not on my wifes (Just a normal second account on Vista). I've had to re-dl Programs 2x for her and me which is kind of annoying and is using a lot of space up on the hard drive. Any way to stop this?
     
  18. Jadzia

    Jadzia on holiday Premium Member

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    iirc, Acer machines all have the OS install files stored on the hard disk rather than on a CD. And I think they are also configured to create a virtual partition on startup. This may simply be the way it holds these OS installation files separate from the C drive, storing it as a disc image, so it can be mounted as though it is a CD. But I might be wrong.

    So on that assumption, I think the question you need to answer is do you want the OS install files on the hard disk? To answer that question:

    1. Can you afford to delete them? Do you have an install CD?
    2. Is the machines cheaply made? Because if the cd/dvd drive has internal usb connectivity, that will probably render the cd/dvd drive useless without an OS installed, meaning that you can't install an OS from CD, and you can only install one from the disc image on the hard disk.
     

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