Suddenly there is lots of extra hard drive space!

Discussion in 'Windows 7 Help and Support' started by eddified, Nov 9, 2012.

  1. eddified

    eddified Senior Member

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    I have an extra logical drive (separate from C: ) that holds my personal data, you know, pictures, home videos, personal documents etc. This drive, E:, has for the last year or so always shown up in explorer with red a red disk space indicator bar. (There was about 20GB of free space left). Well, recently I copied, oh, about 8 GB of new pictures and videos from my laptop over onto the E: drive. Then, I was watching one of the videos when explorer crashed. When it came back up, I pressed "Windows Key + E" to get an explorer window and the disk space indicator bar was no longer red, in fact there is now 90 GB of extra space. I am concerned that lots of my personal files were deleted. I've looked around and have not noticed any missing files, but how can I know? (Event viewer didn't show anything suspicious.)

    So, what could cause my E: drive to suddenly gain LOTS of extra hard disk space? (I think about 70 GB). I've been thinking that during/after I copied the new files to the E: drive, Windows 7 saw disk space getting low, so it decided that some files (maybe the search index?) would have to be moved to a different logical drive. Is this even possible? I checked the index settings, it says the index lives on C:, is it possible it _was_ on E: but recently was automatically moved?

    I do have a backup of all of the data, but restoring data isn't fun. It will be time consuming, and I don't even know yet if I lost anything.

    What else could be the cause of sudden extra hard drive space? (I did not empty the recycle bin, it still has files in it from months ago.)
     
  2. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    If you have an Image backup of your system, which includes that partition, you can mount it in Disk Management and recover files.

    Did you ever use Disk Management (diskmgmt.msc) to look at the drive? Had that partition always show a red indicator? Does the total size of the partiton seem to be the same as before?

    If you want, you can take a snipping tool picture of your Disk Management window and attach using the paperclip on advanced replies. But just to be sure, Windows 7 can handle 4 primary partitions, or 3 primary and one Extended (which contains logical partitions). If you had used a third party partition manager, it might have exceeded this limitation.
     
  3. eddified

    eddified Senior Member

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    Did you ever use Disk Management (diskmgmt.msc) to look at the drive? Yes. Had that partition always show a red indicator? Yes, as long as it had lots of data. Does the total size of the partiton seem to be the same as before? Yes.

    If you want, you can take a snipping tool picture of your Disk Management window and attach using the paperclip on advanced replies. See attached file.
     

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  4. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    It seems to look OK, although it does show as active. Did you set it that way? Not a problem, unless you happen to change the drive order in the bios.

    You are aware your boot files are in the partition marked as D: ?

    Have you noticed any missing files?
     
  5. eddified

    eddified Senior Member

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    I have not noticed missing files. D: used to have vista installed on it, I think I was dual booting (it was a while ago, so I can't remember for sure; I can't think of any good reason to dual boot vista and win7 :) . Not sure what "system" partition means.
     
  6. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    A Partition designated as "System" will hold your boot files, and cannot be formatted or removed for your system to boot. Most System partitions are 100 mb, but you are using a normal partition.

    So, if you ever decide to change your configuration, keep in mind where the boot files are located.

    Hopefully, none of your files are missing and it was some kind of glitch that finally worked itself out.
     
  7. eddified

    eddified Senior Member

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    It says "C:" is the "boot" partition, but "D:" is a "system" partition. I went ahead and restored my files from backup to be sure.
     

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