Can I re-configure Disk partitions (Windows Vista)

six-h

New Member
#1
Hi guys, Happy New year to you all!
My old Vista system is still creaking along ... just about but I'm running out of space on my Data partition (F).
I would like to re-allocate some space from my so called recovery partition "D:", to the "F:" partition, particularly since all the folders in the "Recovery" partition except one are empty.
They seem to be created monthly (though some months are missed) and date from 15/09/2010, which in its self is odd, since the OS was installed in July 2008 when the PC was built.
It would be nice to know what triggered the creation of these empty folders, but more importantly, can I pinch some of this free space for my data... and instructions how to do it?
Can anyone advise me?

This is how my 500 GB disc is currently partitioned and what free space exists:-

C: Operating system ... currently 44 GB free of 118 GB
D: Recovery ... Currently 114 GB free of 117 GB.
No idea what writes to this partition, but apparently I don't have permission to view the Files.
There are 39 folders with similar labels, one such is this:- fefd7aa11e856730cc12b439d25ee9.
All the folders except one are empty (0 bytes), the odd one out contains the file "MRT.exe" which I believe is something to do with the "Malicious Software Removal Tool".
E: Apps ... Currently 112 GB free of 114 GB
F: Data ... Currently 10.1 GB free of 116 GB this partition's bar graph has now turned red due to the limited capacity.
 
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Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#2
Your Apps partition looks grossly over allocated. Why don't you shrink that down to 30Gb or so and create a G: Data2 in the freed space.
Better there than mess with the Recovery partition.
 

six-h

New Member
#3
Thanks Terry, sounds sensible...probably why I didn't think of it!
I don't have much experience of partitioning but somewhere I seem to recall being told that you can "shift" space, for want of a better term, between adjacent partitions.

If that's true, could I reduce the Apps partition (E) and assign the excess to the adjacent Data partition (F)?
Could I do that using the Disc Management Utility in Vista?
Thanks

Any Ideas concerning the (almost) monthly empty folders and what started creating them?
The fact that MRT.exe lurks in one of them makes me suspicious that something untoward might be afoot! :S
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#4
Disk mgmt shrink will create space at the back end, but expand will not move the front of the next backwards. Partitions are identified by the disk sig and the start offset, so it won't move that. You'd need a 3rd party partition manager for that. Hence the new partition suggestion. Move some of your data sets in there and leave space to grow in both.
 

six-h

New Member
#5
Hi Terry, thanks for explaining that so eloquently!
Decided to take your advice but just taking a look into "Disk Management Help", I saw this which confused the hell out of me...and sort of scared me off doing anything!
The bald statement has no explanation of the terms used and as usual just leaves the lower forms of life, like myself totally underwhelmed!

Disk conversion options
. When you add more than four partitions to a basic disk, you are prompted to convert the disk to dynamic or to the GUID partition table (GPT) partition style.

Can you translate into simple english for me? :smile:

I do have a copy of Acronis True Image 2009 Home which has on many occasions confounded me when attempting the (supposedly) most straightforward of tasks and reading other users experiences of partition re-sizing with it has convinced me that I've wasted my money buying it in the first place!
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#6
Sorry, not paying sufficient attention to your OP. (or asking the right questions)
If you've already got 4 primaries on an MBR configured HDD, then you you've hit the limit.
My latest PC is UEFI -GPT for the new SSD system disk and has 6 primaries, the old legacy storage HDDs ported over from the previous PC have <4 partitions. The new storage HDD which I recently formatted, intending it to have 4 primaries, would not allow me to do so.
W7 Disk Management absolutely refused to allow me to create a fourth primary partition, and kept making the 4th into a logical inside an extended, even though I only wanted the all of the remaining space to be a single partition and didn't need or want the extended partition.
Are all of your partitions primary ?
It sounds like you are going to have to use a 3rd party app to shuffle your space around.
Can't comment on Acronis usability, but you can get free alternatives, like
Partition Wizard Bootable CD allows user to manage partition directly with partition manager bootable CD..
There's no actual need to do any playing with the partitions though. You could just move some of your data into the apps partition.
If it's labelled "apps" and it offends your sense of neatness to put non apps in there, change its label to "apps and data" !
 

six-h

New Member
#7
Thanks Terry, had to open Disk Management to confirm, but yes, all four partitions are "Primary".
Like your lateral thinking regarding moving some data to the Apps partition.
Thinking to move both the "Videos" and "Music" folders which amounts to about 60GB.
I will have to "point" Serviio (my DLNA server software) at the new location, but if there are no other complications, that will be simple and neat enough for me!
However! ..There are a couple of things which might upset the apple cart, the two folders in question are of the "blue" variety; the whole of the Music one is "shared" and the nested "My Videos" folder (inside the blue "Videos" folder) is also shared.
Sorry to be a pest, but do these factors raise any concerns when shifting to another partition?
 
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Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#8
Right click on the folder > properties > location and Windows will move everything for you, and everything will just continue to find it as before.
 

six-h

New Member
#9
Hmm! I seem to have messed that up!
Rather than moving the Blue folder and all its contents, the Blue folder has evaporated and just the nested (yellow) folders and their contents have moved!

Any ideas how I can put that right?
So far I've created a "New Folder" Called it "Videos", like the blue one was, but the "Properties now " only has the single row of tabs, the "Location" tab is missing, and of course, the content of all these files are nolonger available to Serviio. :S


Update:
Scared to try anything else in case I make matters worse!
Thought of "Sys. Restore", but have a sneaky feeling it wouldn't undo what ever I've done!
Been searching the net for help and think this might be promising.
It seems to be instructing on how to restore a blue folder which has changed colour to yellow, but it's the nearest I can find to "Creating" a new blue folder to replace a missing one.
This is the page:- http://www.winhelponline.com/articles/130/1/Shell-folders-are-displayed-with-the-

I tried opening an elevated "Command Prompt", and this was where the wheels fell off!
Unlike the example pictured, the window title on my machine says "Administrator: Command Prompt", and the cursor is flashing at the end of the first line which reads "C:\Windows|system32>", not "C:\>" as per the example.
Maybe I'm too pedantic, but when you know nothing, you thank God for pictures!
At that point I gave up in the hope that you might be able to help!!
 
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six-h

New Member
#10
Got a bit further:
created an ordinary yellow folder back on the "F" partition which was "home" before I tried to move it!
Found my way...eventually to %SystemRoot%\system32\imageres.dll where lies the bespoke Blue Icon with the film clip.
So now I have the cosmetics sorted....just need to get back the special properties of these "Shell Folders" (another new term I've learned!)

As I understand, these folders are imbued with special properties, the visible sign of which is the extra Tab in the properties window taged :"Location".
It seems these powers are assigned by a "Desktop.ini file"...these files are hidden... and it seems they remain so despite the fact that I ALWAYS have the "show hidden files and folders" option ticked!
No Idea how I can access the original .ini file

This is the script of the required "ini" file for the Video's folder:-
[.ShellClassInfo]
LocalizedResourceName=@%SystemRoot%\system32\shell32.dll,-21791
InfoTip=@%SystemRoot%\system32\shell32.dll,-12690
IconResource=%SystemRoot%\system32\imageres.dll,-189
IconFile=%SystemRoot%\system32\shell32.dll
IconIndex=-238
[LocalizedFileNames]
Sample Videos.lnk=@%SystemRoot%\system32\shell32.dll,-21807

Having created this in Notepad and changed the file type to ".ini" I am faced with various protests from Windows, from memory, these are that the file already exists and would I like to name mine xxx2....either that, or would I like to replace the existing file.
I rejected the option to change my file to No2 since that would be futile.
Haven't tried the replace original yet, it's only occured once, and I think it was when I was thinking of changing the "Saved Games" shell folder to Video's....but I didn't have the confidence, thinking if it went wrong, I would be in more Do Do than I already am!


If anyone can help me progress further, I would be grateful!