Q

Do you know how I can get Windows to read all 80G bytes?

I have an 80G byte hard drive but on Windows 98 it shows as only 8G bytes. My BIOS shows it as 80G bytes and it is set up for FAT32. Do you know how I can get Windows to read all 80G bytes?

The FAT32 file system can address partitions up to 2T bytes - that's two TERA bytes - in size, so an 80G byte drive should not pose any difficulty at all. Was this machine pre-loaded from a factory or OEM? Sometimes OEM's will use a disk-imaging process that creates a smaller partition size than the hard drive is capable of.

You have three options:

1. Go to a DOS window (because DOS will never die), and use FDISK to create a second partition to use as a D: drive. Pro's - easy, quick, non-destructive. Con's - creates a second drive letter, which some people don't care for.

2. Drop a few bucks on Partition Magic (www.powerquest.com) or a similar utility that will allow you to do an in-place extension of your existing partition. Pro's - easy, quick, non-destructive, allows all available disk space to be addressed using a single drive letter. Con's - Not free.

3. FDISK, re-format, manually re-install the OS. Pro's - uhhh....it'll work. Con's - not easy, not quick, data-destructive.

This was first published in July 2002

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