When you format your computer you are asked if you want to create partitions on your hard drive. I definitely recommend having your hard drive at least halved and made into two partitions for starters. This is not unreasonable as most hard drives in computers now days are getting rather large. Therefore you can afford to spare some extra space to store files away in case of a computer crash. If you have some spare cash I would definitely buy a second hard drive for your computer as this will keep the data safe on another separate drive.
Here is a 2TB hard drive that is an absolute bargain for you that is well under $100!
Western Digital 2 TB Caviar Green SATA Intellipower 64 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive WD20EARS
Not everyone can afford another hard drive so this tutorial is about splitting your existing hard drive into two partitions.
To actually change, rename, merge and delete partitions on your hard drive while not effecting your C: drive you must have partitioned your hard drive in the first instance.
If your hard drive is just one big partition called C: drive then you cannot just chop a bit off later when you feel like it.
However if your 100GB hard drive is already divided into two partitions of 50GB each, one being the main C: drive and the other is left for you to play with.
Why is it good to have a hard drive divided into partitions?
There are benefits to having your hard drive divided into separate partitions and the main one would be to backup important files. If you have files stored on another partition and C: drive crashes, it is most likely that your files on the other partition will be fine.
Another benefit is that you can format C: drive and leave the other partition intact and still storing your important files. You still go through the normal steps of installing Windows XP but you just choose to delete the C: drive partition only and then recreate it and install Windows on it. This leaves the other partition untouched.
Having partitions on your hard drive also allows you to organize your computer files better. Some people have a separate partition for different types of files.
How to create a partition on your hard drive without formatting Windows:
If you have a partition on your computer beside the C: drive, then you can delete, merge, rename and create more partitions.
- Go to the start menu and select my computer (just make it blue)
- Then right click on it and choose manage from the menu. See more details about how to open computer management.
- Open the storage section by pressing on the plus sign in the left column
- Then choose disk management
- All of your partitions will show up here
To see more information please watch the video tutorial below.
Easily Resize, Copy, Move hard disk partitions without losing data!
Notes related to Delete, merge, create, and rename a hard drive partition without formatting Windows:
- You can get your calculator out and divide a piece of your hard drive into sections for different types of files to be saved there.
- If you have already installed Windows and want to change the size of your partition see the link below.