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New XP Install... WRONG DRIVE LETTER

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by Jeffgp, Oct 26, 2007.

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  1. Jeffgp

    Jeffgp Thread Starter

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    A friend of mine got a virus on his PC. The PC was cleaned, and the HD replaced by another drive, (BUT NOT REMOVED). When he and someone else(NOT ME) installed XP, they installed it to the E: drive.

    Now, even with the original C: drive removed and the new drive set as Master, Installed correctly to the cable in which it should be, He cannot get XP to recognize the E: drive as the C:. There is NO OTHER Drive IN THE SYSTEM!


    Now the drive is booting off of E: and acting as a C: drive, but the letter says E:.

    I tried to help him, we went to the Disk management where you can change Drive letters and all he gets is a message saying he cannot do that. We tried several different things, and short of accessing the registry(which I do not want to do long distance) over the phone trying to help him...I don't know where else to go.

    I even deleted the IDE drive in System properties and it found everything, but came back as E:.

    ANY Suggestions???

    HELP!:confused:
     
  2. DoubleAgentM

    DoubleAgentM

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  3. Jeffgp

    Jeffgp Thread Starter

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    Yes...I found this but this is not the answer.

    You can delete the files doing this and the drive letter just needs to be changed.

    There has to be a better way of doing what needs to be done.

    I sent him this link when I found it, but he doesn't have the skills to do it.
     
  4. endfro

    endfro

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    Well, its not going to happen without you reinstalling windows as far as I know.


    Dang near every program out there writes information to the registry. So your entire registry has everything from Windows itself to your favorite applications all tied to e:

    You can change drive letters on CDROMs, drives that dont have important applications installed. But the one drive you can never ever do it on is your root windows drive.

    Sadly, I have seen this happen before. (done it myself not paying attention)

    But if you decide to reformat heres what you do.

    Pop open the case, unplug the old drive (currently listed as C: though you dont want it to be), make sure the drive has no power and no data connections. Then, boot off your install CD, install windows, since there is no existing C: drive, it will default over to C.

    On the other hand, there is nothign wrong with having everything running off of the E drive as your root drive. to windows it is just another letter.
     
  5. Jeffgp

    Jeffgp Thread Starter

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    A friend of mine got a virus on his PC. The PC was cleaned, and the HD replaced by another drive, (BUT NOT REMOVED). When he and someone else(NOT ME) installed XP, they installed it to the E: drive.

    Now, even with the original C: drive removed and the new drive set as Master, Installed correctly to the cable in which it should be, He cannot get XP to recognize the E: drive as the C:. There is NO OTHER Drive IN THE SYSTEM!

    Now the drive is booting off of E: and acting as a C: drive, but the letter says E:.

    I tried to help him, we went to the Disk management where you can change Drive letters and all he gets is a message saying he cannot do that. We tried several different things, and short of accessing the registry(which I do not want to do long distance) over the phone trying to help him...I don't know where else to go.

    I even deleted the IDE drive in System properties and it found everything, but came back as E:.

    ANY Suggestions???

    HELP!
     
  6. endfro

    endfro

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    What you are saying makes no sense though. Not to sound stand-offish or anything, but if the drive currently set to C: is not physically plugged into the computer when you are installing windows (especially when you are formatting a drive) there is no physical way that the computer could ever know that a C drive was previously on there. And even if it did, windows wouldnt care that there was a C: drive as it is no longer connected to the PC. Windows will go about its business and assume that the drive previously connected as C: will no longer be connected again.

    Then even if you did reconnect the previous C: drive to the PC after you installed windows, it wouldnt just magically change your new C: drive into E: and leave your old one as C:. What it would do is just see that a new drive has been connected, if its able to read the disk it will just assign it the next available drive letter.
     
  7. Jeffgp

    Jeffgp Thread Starter

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    Windows was re-installed onto the machine when there was another Drive present..which was the original "C" drive. The person installed Windows XP to the "E"drive.

    The original drive has been removed, and now the other drive(E) is booting and starting just like it was a "C" drive, but it is designated as "E".

    The "E" Drive NEVER became the "C" even though it was set to MASTER, and put in the correct boot location with the correct cable.
     
  8. endfro

    endfro

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    Right, which leads me to my original post.

    If you installed windows onto the new drive while the original C drive was connected to the computer then you have two choices at the install menu. Either suck it up and deal with a windows drive labeled as E:. OR you could have deleted the partition that was your original C drive and then windows would have defaulted the new drive to C when it installed.

    However, since you have installed windows on the E drive, there is nothing you can do to go back aside from reinstalling and making sure that the original C: drive is not connected to the computer. (I assume the original C drive has things you want to save on it otherwise it woul have been formatted by now.)

    Does what I am saying make sense?

    In short, whatever drive letter you install windows to is always going to be that drive letter until you reinstall it. However, you cannot over write the drive letter for a drive physically connected to the PC. So if you wanted to overwrite the drive letter C: you would have to either delete that partition (think of deleting the partition as disconnecting the drive with software) or unplug the drive before you start the install process.

    Hope that helps!
     
  9. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

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    Am pretty sure that the bottom line was stated by endfro in post #4: (EDIT: and in #8!)

    "Well, its not going to happen without you reinstalling windows as far as I know."

    and

    "You can change drive letters on CDROMs, drives that dont have important applications installed. But the one drive you can never ever do it on is your root windows drive."
     
  10. Jeffgp

    Jeffgp Thread Starter

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    If this is true....this is the advice I gave him from the start. I told him to go and get another HD, take the "E"E drive out of the PC, install the new one and Install XP to it. I there are several different fixes to change drive letters connected to the machine...

    DISK Management - DID not allow him to change the Drive letter. I believe there was some satement about Volume...

    The fix that the first poster added was one that I had looked at for him, but I don't think he'd make it through the regedit part.

    So, unless someone out there knows a FIX to this problem I am going to stand by my first advice and tell him to reinstall to the new HD....then he can add back what WAS the "E" drive and transfer any data added since he started out that way.

    I really don't think the thing is going to work correctly until after he reinstalls again anyway. Why would someone install XP to the E drive anyway?
     
  11. endfro

    endfro

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    Well technically there is nothing wrong with installing it to the E drive, just something that the user is going to have to be aware of.

    As far as why would you install it to the E drive...


    Well I had a friend who bought a PowerSpec PC, for real cheap when his comp blew up (Literally BLEW UP haha). It had Vista, he works from home and cannot possibly use Vista for his works applications. So he asked me to stop by and help him install windows. When we were in the install menu (where you select which drive/partition to install to) we noticed that there was a partition containing images of his software as well as his original install partition. We proceed to first delete and reformat the partition that Vista was one (mistake!!), because we did this, the partition with the restore images (being the older of partitions) somehow became the new C. Now we didnt get as far as installing XP before we knew this would happen, but I told him "Odds are that we are about to install XP on an E: drive" He said, "well I would rather save my restore images for now incase the XP install doesnt work so im not totally screwed" He said he would reinstall XP the official way and delete the partition with the restore images on it if it ever bugged him enough.

    To my knowledge, he is still running XP on his E: drive. And has experienced nothing negative (aside from annoyance) by running it on that drive.

    In all seriousness though, I agree, why have it on anything else but C:. If I were you and you are able to backup all that matters to you, I would do it, then reformat and reinstall windows so you can get it on a C: drive.
     
  12. Jeffgp

    Jeffgp Thread Starter

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    Like I said, the PC is not mine and it is 300 miles away, so I haven't done anything to it. My co-worker is having all kinds of fun trying to figure this out though.

    The FIRST thing I told him, after we went to Disk Management and it didn't let him do anything, was to get a NEW HD, Install XP and use this drive as a backup.

    Finally, that is what he is going to do....

    And...one final note....He says...I'll call you Saturday if I have ANY Problems...

    Oh BOY!
     
  13. endfro

    endfro

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    Dont you love it? Well I hope you can get him to install windows the logical way with C: as the root drive.
     
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