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Feigning normality since 1973

Software recommendation: Partition Magic

Filed in: Computers.

Back when I set up my current computer, I partitioned the 250GB hard drive with a 20GB partition for Windows XP and the rest as a separate partition for my data. At the time, I thought it was the best thing to do - since I was planning on installing software on the secondary partition and reserving the system drive for Windows, I didn't expect to need much space. Indeed, the amount of disk used on my system drive (which ended up as H:, because the installer for Windows is not very good at working out how to assign drive letters) has only grown by a little in these past four years or so.

Unfortunately these days software vendors are keener for you to install their software on your system drive. Google Chrome doesn't even seem to give you the option when you install it - it's the system drive or nothing! So the free space on my system drive has been dwindling for some time, and it was starting to impact on Windows' performance.

I've faced this problem before with my PC prior to this one. The system drive on that was likewise 20GB, and while doing some maintenance on it for its current owner, I used Partition Logic to make the system partition bigger. I figured I could just use the same software on this PC as well, so I burned a fresh copy to a CD.

Partition Logic is pretty awesome. Unfortunately it turns out that Partition Logic doesn't support the particular SATA drives which I have in my PC. Darn! So I went hunting on the web to see if I could find another similar tool which would support my drives. After trying one piece of software (In fact, I went through the whole process of installing it and setting it to adjust the partition sizes before it told me it wouldn't proceed unless I paid for it), I found Partition Wizard, which is free for non-commercial use. It was easy to install and use, and I was surprised that it was able to resize the partitions while Windows was still running. It was also very fast, though I had cleared most of the data off the secondary drive that I was shrinking to make room.

So that's my software recommendation! Adjusting partitions is not something you have to do that often, but Partition Wizard makes it fairly painless.

Posted October 1, 2011 6:57 PM

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