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Windows 7: Need to Change Windows System Partition Drive Letter


13 Feb 2013   #1

Windows 7 Professional 64 Bit
 
 
Need to Change Windows System Partition Drive Letter

Hello,

My first post here so I hope I am in the correct place.

Here is my problem...

I installed Windows 7 Pro 64 bit on a new Seagate 1TB drive. During the Windows 7 install I created a 250GB partition where the Windows files would be installed. I also left an unallocated partition that I would later use as a data drive (for storing music, videos, docs, etc).

As normal, the Windows 7 installer stated it would need to create a system partition where the boot files and other mysterious files would be stored. Indeed, after installation it had created a 100mb system partition (which I believe is normal).

In Windows I used the Disk Management utility to make the Unallocated partition useable. As a result I had the following partitions:

System partition (no drive letter assigned)
C: Boot and Page File partition (where Windows is installed)
D: Data partition (where music, videos, docs, etc will be stored)

So far all is well However...

What I needed to do was follow the simple procedure in the following link to move my C:\Users folder to D:\Users...

Move All User Folders to Another Hard Drive – Windows 7 > How - To @ MaxMakeDesign.co.uk

After following the instructions to get to the dos command prompt via the Windows install/repair DVD I was bemused to find that the system partition (that had no drive letter in Windows) was drive C:, my boot partition where Windows is installed (drive C: in Windows) was drive D:, and my data drive (drive D: in Windows) was drive E:. As such, performing the C:\Users to D:\Users process is impossible. In fact I tried it by substituting C for D and D for E but when I went to boot into Windows it claimed that no user could be found (which is understandable).

So, how do I make the system partition in the dos command prompt (i.e. outside of Windows) be another drive letter (i.e. NOT C: ) or make it hidden so my boot partition (where Windows is installed) is C: and my data partition is D: like they are in Windows?

In this thread I am using Microsoft's way of naming the partitions - System partition = where the boot files are stored. Boot partition is where Windows is installed. Stupid how Microsoft managed to make things confusing by labelling these partitions in a non-logical (opposite) way!

I hope someone can help!

BTW: I don't mind if I have to do a complete reinstall of Windows!

Cheers,

Mark.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

13 Feb 2013   #2

Windows 7 Professional x64 Linux Mint 16
 
 

Maybe this would be easier.

User Profile - Change Default Location
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2013   #3

Windows 7 Professional 64 Bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AddRAM View Post
Maybe this would be easier.

User Profile - Change Default Location
AddRAM, thanks for the link. I had read through the content prior to my post and decided the method in the link I provided to move C:\Users to D:\Users was far easier to accomplish, and would handle any new users I created (i.e. they would automatically have their folders/files stored in D:\Users).

I was hoping to prevent the dos command prompt using C: for the system partition and instead use C: for my boot partition (where Windows is installed), and D: for my data partition - like they are in Windows! I can then use the (imo easier and "better") method of moving C:\Users to D:\Users.

Hopefully someone out there has a solution.

Cheers,

Mark.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


13 Feb 2013   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

Quote:
System partition (no drive letter assigned)
C: Boot and Page File partition (where Windows is installed)
D: Data partition (where music, videos, docs, etc will be stored)
The System Reserved Partition is to small to use as D:Users.
Use your D: Data Partition.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2013   #5

Windows 7 Professional x64 Linux Mint 16
 
 

He is going to use D. The partition he created from unallocated space, not his system reserve partition.

@markwill, It can`t be far easier if it`s not done yet, correct ?

And, Welcome to the Forums
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2013   #6

Windows 7 Professional 64 Bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AddRAM View Post
He is going to use D. The partition he created from unallocated space, not his system reserve partition.

@markwill, It can`t be far easier if it`s not done yet, correct ?

And, Welcome to the Forums
True! However, it would be "far easier" if I could stop the system partition being labelled as C: in dos!

After further investigation I found a method to prevent the 100mb system partition being automatically created during installation and instead have the boot files installed on the same partition as where the Windows files will be, e.g. I will end up with the following (I hope)...

C: (250GB) System and Boot partition (where boot files and Windows files are installed)
D: (750GB) Data partition (where music, videos, etc will be stored).

If I can accomplish that then using the "link" method for having my Users folder on D: instead of C: should work!

I'll report back but in the meantime if anyone has a solution for my original post (i.e. hide or assign a new drive letter to my system partition in dos) then it would be welcomed.

With the increased popularity of SSD drives being used for storing Windows (and due to their limited size, another drive being required for data), I would have thought Microsoft would have presented us with a painless solution to store your Users folder anywhere you want instead of "forcing" us to use C:
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2013   #7

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

Quote:
True! However, it would be "far easier" if I could stop the system partition being labelled as C: in dos!
Quote:
System partition (no drive letter assigned)
There is No drive letter.

Need to Change Windows System Partition Drive Letter-dp001.png


My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2013   #8

Windows 7 Professional 64 Bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by theog View Post
Quote:
True! However, it would be "far easier" if I could stop the system partition being labelled as C: in dos!
Quote:
System partition (no drive letter assigned)
There is No drive letter.

Attachment 255001
Indeed for your system there is not a drive letter assigned to the system partition (I wish I was that fortunate)! However, for mine there was! No idea why or how it happened.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2013   #9

Windows 7 Professional 64 Bit
 
 

I managed to resolve my problem but it required a fresh install of Windows.

I used Method 3 in the article below to ensure that the system and boot information ended up on a single partition and not split between two partitions.

Hack to Remove 100 MB System Reserved Partition When Installing Windows 7 My Digital Life

Method 3 gave me what I needed: a drive C: and a drive D: in Windows and (more importantly) in the dos command prompt too. I was then able to perform the "link" method of moving C:\Users to D:\Users. After initial testing the "link" works perfectly (and I will report back here if I do experience any problems).

Note about Method 3: I was unable to perform the exact same process as described in Method 3 because my installation of Windows 7 went ahead and started unpacking and installing its files without giving me the option to make changes to partitions as per step 4 and onwards. To get around this I simply restarted my PC during the installation process, then started the installation process from the Windows 7 DVD again. Windows had already created its 100mb system (reserved) partition and I was able to follow Method 3 from step 4.

I hope the links I provided and the additional points and issues I and others raised will aid those wishing to have their Users folder on a drive other than C:
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2013   #10

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by markwilla View Post
Indeed for your system there is not a drive letter assigned to the system partition (I wish I was that fortunate)! However, for mine there was! No idea why or how it happened.
Your system is the SAME as my test rig.

DO THIS TO SEE.

1) Open a command prompt. (from the desktop)
Type in command line
2) DISKPART
3) LIST VOLUME
You will see the screenshot above.

4) User Profile - Change Default Location
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Need to Change Windows System Partition Drive Letter




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