Using fdisk on an external USB hard drive

  Pineman100 19:01 04 Mar 2006

Because I've got into a mess creating new partitions on an old HDD that I've added to my new computer (as an external USB drive) I'm going to use fdisk to delete all partitions on the drive and start again (I have nothing on the drive that I need to keep).

The one thing that worries me is making sure I use fdisk on the correct drive - I don't want to be wiping my main system drive!

Can I be confident that fdisk will call my USB drive "Drive 2"? (I have only one unpartitioned internal drive)

  Diodorus Siculus 19:24 04 Mar 2006

Why use fdisk?

If you are on XP /2k, you can use disk management:

right click my computer

choose manage


  Pineman100 18:14 05 Mar 2006

I'd love to use disk management (yes, I run XP SP2) but the problem is that it can only "see" the 6GB partition that I created. The other 54GB of the drive is completely invisible to disk management, for some reason (could it be because it's FAT32 whereas all my other drives are NTFS?).
I've also discovered that the whole USB drive is invisible to fdisk, so I'm snookered there too! Fdisk only offers me one drive to (un)partition - so that must be my IDE system drive (C:). To cap it all, I have no spare bay or power plug inside the computer, so I can't even bung the external drive inside temporarily, to fdisk it!
Talk about frustrating...! I don't suppose you have any bright ideas?

  woodchip 18:20 05 Mar 2006

Try Acronis Disk Directore Suite under Downloads click here
I think it is a triel version. I have the full version it's good

  Diemmess 18:40 05 Mar 2006

FDISK only works in DOS and a USB connection is not recognised.

From your earlier thread the choice is simple. Either borrow or buy a partitioning program Achronis or PQMagic (later version) OR

Go the stone-age route connect the innards of the Ext HD into your computer instead of any other drive (all of which for safety should be disconnected) and run FDISK from the floppy as you attempted before.
You recognised and were cautious enough to avoid 'doing' the wrong HD!

  Pineman100 17:04 06 Mar 2006

Thanks Diemess - I had reluctantly come to the conclusion that I will have to do as you suggest and "go stone-age"! My small problem is that my computer has no spare internal power plug for a second HDD, nor does it have a floppy drive for booting from a startup disk. However I plan to strap the drive into a friend's computer and do it that way.
I have one further complication that I hope you might be kind enough to advise me on.
I downloaded a trial version of Partition Magic in order to try and sort the problem, but according to PM the 6GB partition and drive that I created wasn't on my USB drive (F:) at all, but on my system drive (C:). This puzzles me, and I reckon it's due to one of two possible causes:-
1. I'm bl**dy stupid (not impossible by any means!)
2. PM doesn't recognise a USB drive as a separate entity and "sees" it as a partition on the main IDE drive.
Do you have a view on this, please?

  ed-0 17:38 06 Mar 2006

Things do not seem to be very clear. If we could see your disk management screen it would help. Connect the usb drive to the computer.

You could download quick shot from click here. Click on the download quickshot 1.5. It is only small and will take a screen shot of your desktop. Like click here.

Copy and paste the url here. We should be able to see your settings from there.;-)

  Pineman100 18:07 06 Mar 2006

Thanks for that idea. I hope this works!

[URL=click here][IMG]click here[/IMG][/URL]

  Pineman100 18:11 06 Mar 2006

Well I wasn't very impressed with the image as a png, so I'm trying again as a jpg.

[URL=click here][IMG]click here[/IMG][/URL]

  ed-0 18:31 06 Mar 2006

that's an excellent immage ;-) click here Well done.

That, looks to me, as if that is your main hard drive with a 6 Gb partition made. What is the size of your internal hard drive?

There is no sign of your usb external hard drive.:-(

  Pineman100 18:56 06 Mar 2006

My one IDE drive is nominally 200GB.

As I have created this 6GB partition/logical drive in error, I'd like to get rid of it with Partition Magic and return the 6GB to my main C: drive partition. Should I just delete it, or should I merge it with the main partition? From what I saw when I fiddled about (carefully!) with PM yesterday, if you delete a partition, the liberated space isn't automatically amalgamated with the other partition on the drive - it just sits there, described as "unallocated".

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