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One upgrade success, one failure



Been meaning to give Windows 7 a try on my Tablet PC, but aside from dragging my feet over the hassle of grabbing drivers, I was running short on drive space too. Seemed like a couple of good excuses to upgrade my hard drive.

hddupgradeI previously bumped up from the 80GB 5400rpm drive in my Toshiba R25 to a Hitachi Travelstar 160GB 7200rpm drive. The new drive was working well, so I decided to go with the same model, just larger at 320GB. Bought a new one via eBay at a nice price.
My choice for copying my data over was Acronis True Image. It can be a bit glitchy at times, but overall, I find it very reliable for backing up my data – it’s saved me on a couple of occasions. Decided to get a little fancy and partition my drive three ways, one for my XP system, one for files, and one to try Windows 7. That’s where I ran into trouble.
Acronis True Image let me partition the new drive, which I attached via a SATA-to-USB adapter, but it wouldn’t let me clone my drive without wiping out those partitions. So after some trial and error, I went with a straightforward cloning with no partitioning. After swapping the drives, I installed Windows 7 on the new one and tried to use its built-in partitioning tool from there. It worked but not entirely. I could create new partitions, but even with my documents moved over to one of them, the main partition wouldn’t shrink past 140GB, leaving 90GB unused. Not what I wanted.
I moved the new drive back  to the adapter  and did some more tinkering with moving data around. I gave  the  partitioning  another shot using a utility called GParted. It was working fine until I started moving around items on my desk and tugged the cord on the adapter, halting the process and disrupting the drive. Thus, I was put back to square one.
I cloned my drive again and swapped it in, so I’m back up and running, but without Windows 7. At least not yet. Another consideration is that I’m due for a new computer next year, so I may not bother upgrading my current tablet at all.  Need to  think about it some more.


  1. Tim

    07/03/2009 at 9:36 pm

    If you start taking the same path again, I can say that I’ve had much better success shrinking partitions by using Easeus Partition Manager. The free version is my goto app for resizing and relabeling my partitions.

  2. GoodThings2Life

    07/04/2009 at 7:09 am

    You’d be better off just taking a straight image backup of your existing setup and storing it… and installing Windows 7 from scratch and then restore your image later.

    Besides, partitioning your drive always causes performance limitations while the head is forced to perform twice as many seek operations.

    That said if you feel you absolutely must partition the drive, both Partition Magic and Ghost are much more effective.

  3. HG

    07/04/2009 at 9:12 am

    Try copying your XP to the new drive like you mentioned. Then partition it and install Win 7. Then make the 3rd partition after everything for your documents.

  4. Guy

    07/05/2009 at 10:48 am

    I’d pay for a copy of Partition Manager or Hard Disk Manager from Paragon Software. Its perfect for all your copying, partitioning, resizing and any other hard disk requirements.

    They do varying different versions, a linux based bootable CD, a WinPE based version which allows the loading of storage controller drivers and also a Windows based version which will allow you to resize your system partition without even the need for a reboot!

    Hope this helps.

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