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Thread: Can you format a IDE 120GB as a 20GB HDD?

  1. #1

    Default Can you format a IDE 120GB as a 20GB HDD?

    So yesterday, I picked up an old 386 No-Name PC out of the recycler's box at the place I'm interning with.

    Since it was once one of their customer's computers, I had to let them keep the HDD's. (Don't worry, they're keeping them)

    So now, the only HDD I have is an IDE 120GB. But, after an hour of fiddling, I can't get the computer to recognize it.

    I pulled the 20GB drive out of my old Gateway, and voila!, it recognized it and tried to boot the Win2000 on it, failing miserably in the process.


    So what I'd like to know is, can you format a larger drive as a smaller drive? I.e, 120GB as a 20GB...

    Thanks!
    Peter
    PC/AT Clone, Gateway Tower--My first computer, upgraded to new ATX gaming motherboard. Heathkit HERO Jr. Robot--Your friend, companion and security guard!

  2. #2
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    Default

    If the drive has jumpers to reduce the drive size, you may be able to do what you want. However, by the time 120GB drives were common, they didn't have that option.

    Why not use the 120GB drive in your Gateway and the 20GB drive on your 386?

  3. #3

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    That's an interesting thought... If I put both drives in the Gateway, and I copied over everything to the 120GB, then pulled out the 20GB, would the Gateway boot?

    If I put the 120GB as master of course...
    PC/AT Clone, Gateway Tower--My first computer, upgraded to new ATX gaming motherboard. Heathkit HERO Jr. Robot--Your friend, companion and security guard!

  4. #4
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    Some drives have jumpers to select a smaller capacity. I don't recall any with a 20GB option; typically were set to one of the standard size breaks like 500MB, 8GB, 32GB, or 120GB. Anything else puts one in the crazy world of the DDO in order to partition the drive.

    The best option currently would be to find an IDE to CF adapter and a nice small CF card.

    What magic 386 do you have that recognizes a 20GB hard drive?


    Edit: Disk cloning software will allow the transfer of all files from the 20GB drive to the 120GB and result in a bootable 120GB drive. The cloned drive will often have a less efficient layout than doing an install on the drive directly.

  5. #5

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    kerbizfan, money's a little tight at the moment, so I am looking for a quick fix. But I will definitely look into it.

    As for the magic, I don't know... Maybe it's grateful I saved it from scrap?
    PC/AT Clone, Gateway Tower--My first computer, upgraded to new ATX gaming motherboard. Heathkit HERO Jr. Robot--Your friend, companion and security guard!

  6. #6
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    If the system meets the minimum requirements, I would use Clonezilla to copy the 20gb drive to the 120gb...

    http://clonezilla.org/
    -----[ Al ]-----

    3 - TRS-80 Model I, TRS-80 Model 4D, LNW-80 Model I, Coco, 3 - Coco 2, Coco 3, 2 - Tano Dragon 64, C64, C64c, C128, 2 - Atari 800XL,
    Atari 520-ST, Atari Mega-2 ST, Amiga 1000, TS-1000, TS-2068, ZX-Spectrum, IBM 5150, 2 - Apple ][gs, Laser 128, and a butt load of Macs and Intel PCs.

  7. #7

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    Looks good to me, and I'm pretty sure the ol' Gateway is up to specs.

    Definitely going to give this a try... Thanks for the link!
    PC/AT Clone, Gateway Tower--My first computer, upgraded to new ATX gaming motherboard. Heathkit HERO Jr. Robot--Your friend, companion and security guard!

  8. #8

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    Uh, maybe I'm reading it wrong, but it says it's for Linux based systems...

    Not sure that'll work.
    PC/AT Clone, Gateway Tower--My first computer, upgraded to new ATX gaming motherboard. Heathkit HERO Jr. Robot--Your friend, companion and security guard!

  9. #9
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    Clonezilla and most other disk cloning tools are best run from a bootable CD. Can't really clone a drive while running on the drive and you want to run no other software during the cloning process.

    Watch the prompts carefully. All disk clone software make it far too easy to clone in the wrong direction.

  10. #10

    Default

    all else fails I got a 8 gig drive you can have for the cost of postage

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