I know you think this is an internet marketing blog, but it's much more than that. I do talk tech from time to time. As it should be–I spent the better part of 20 years in IT departments in Fortune 500 companies as well as a few start ups.
So I know just enough to be totally dangerous.
In all seriousness, I wanted to share with you a neat little tool that I found the other day out of necessity. It's a free disk partition manager for 32-bit and 64-bit Windows Operating Systems (so it works on Windows Vista, XP, 7, and 8).
Why the necessity?
A couple years ago, I “wiped” my hard drive clean and installed the “latest and greatest OS” I had on file, Windows XP. Normally, about once a year, I do this wipe and start over, but I've been lax and haven't done it for a couple (maybe even a few) years.
Anyway, I had partitioned my primary hard drive into 2 parts: One for the OS and programs, the other for “data.”
Back in the day, 20 Gigs was pretty huge for the OS and programs. But I began having real issues with running out of partition space. I think I used Partition Magic back then but I was either too lazy to go find it (I had since uninstalled it) and I do remember having a BIG issue when I tried a previous time to resize a partition…
So I did a quick google search for “site:lifehacker.com disk partition manager” and found this gem called Partition Wizard.
Partition Wizard works like a charm!
It's freeware (not nagware) for home editions (server editions cost money, if I read their terms right–make sure you read their terms) that is lightweight, easy and fast to download, and really easy to use.
It's so easy to use, in fact, that I don't even think you'll need me to show you how to do it. It's very intuitive.
So what I did was “extend” my C:\ partition to use the free space in my D:\ partition.
CAVEAT: When you do this, you must “apply” or “commit” this change to the OS and then re-start your PC. When the PC reboots, your D:\ drive may “disappear.”
Don't freak out (like I did). Just go to your Windows Disk Manager and re-assign the D:\ drive letter to your “old” D:\ drive.
I don't know if that's a bug or part of the design, but that's what happened to me.
Of course, before you do ANY hard disk partitioning or re-partitioning, BACK UP YOUR DATA.