Question How do I merge this drive?

egderic

Commendable
Jun 14, 2018
17
1
1,515
0
Hi there,

I have a drive that had the OS installed on it, with an extra partition for my files.

You can see it here:



Now my OS/programs are on an SSD, so I don't need this drive for the OS anymore, but I'd like to continue using this HDD for files. Is there a way to merge all of Media(G) into all of the other partitions on this disk without losing any of the data in Media(G)?
When I right-click on any of the other partitions - except for the Unallocated section - I don't get any options. On Media (G), I get the option to extend, but I don't know what will happen if I do. Even if it works, I still end up with these other partitions there, which I don't think I need anymore.
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Mar 16, 2013
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In Disk Management, you can only extend(merge) to the right.

The BEST way to do this is to copy everything from that Media partition to somewhere else.
Then, delete all partitions, leaving one blank space. Use it as desired.

But...test first.
Power off.
Physically disconnect this drive.
Power up.

Does it boot correctly?
 

lvt

Prominent
Apr 19, 2021
981
156
590
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How many GB of data do you have on the G?

If the data is important, you must make a backup before using a disk partition tool, if there is a power outage during the process, your data will be lost.
 
Is there a way to merge all of Media(G) into all of the other partitions on this disk without losing any of the data in Media(G)?
  1. Create a partition in unallocated space - 2797 GB (drive letter H: - for example);
  2. Move all data from G: to H: ;
  3. Delete 532MB recovery partition and G: partition;
  4. Change drive letter for H: partition to G: ;
  5. Extend G: partition to remaining unallocated space;
  6. Done.
Note - 100MB EFI System partition could be active bootloader partition (if there is no EFI System partition on any of other drives).
If you mess up active bootloader partition, your system becomes unbootable. Be careful with this.
 

egderic

Commendable
Jun 14, 2018
17
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But...test first.
Power off.
Physically disconnect this drive.
Power up.

Does it boot correctly?
Ooook, I tried that, and no, it doesn't boot correctly. It says it can't find an operating system anywhere. It could be that installing windows on this SSD while having Disk 2 still hooked up kinda screwed things up. The SSD now:



Do I need to reinstall windows on the SSD (reformat) with Disk 2 disconnected? Reconnect Disk 2, Backup all of G, completely reformat Disk 2, then put everything back onto it. Does that make sense?
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Mar 16, 2013
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Ooook, I tried that, and no, it doesn't boot correctly. It says it can't find an operating system anywhere. It could be that installing windows on this SSD while having Disk 2 still hooked up kinda screwed things up. The SSD now:



Do I need to reinstall windows on the SSD (reformat) with Disk 2 disconnected? Reconnect Disk 2, Backup all of G, completely reformat Disk 2, then put everything back onto it. Does that make sense?
Yep.

That is why we TEST and VERIFY before deleting anything.
 
Do I need to reinstall windows on the SSD (reformat) with Disk 2 disconnected? Reconnect Disk 2, Backup all of G, completely reformat Disk 2, then put everything back onto it. Does that make sense?
Or - you could just create bootloader partition on SSD manually (and avoid reinstall).
Execute from elevated command prompt.
diskpart
list disk
select disk 3
list partition
select partition X
(select 931GB partition, x=1 or x=2)​
shrink desired=500
create partition efi
format fs=fat32 quick
assign letter= J:
(assuming J: - drive letter is free and available)​
exit
bcdboot c:\windows /s J:


 

egderic

Commendable
Jun 14, 2018
17
1
1,515
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Why does it need 500? Shouldn't 100MB be enough? I'm guessing it needs a drive letter so that you can use bcdboot command on it, is there a way to unassign the drive letter later? Will having a drive letter make it show up in "My Computer"?

What about the 532 MB Recovery partition? Do I even need one of those? Do you recommend one? I'm planning on using Macrium Reflect or something to back up the system to another physical drive.
 
Last edited:
Why does it need 500? Shouldn't 100MB be enough?
100MB is not enough. 350MB probably is.
Sometimes during windows updates bootloader gets updated. If there is not enough space, update can fail and leave system in unbootable state.
I'm guessing it needs a drive letter so that you can use bcdboot command on it, is there a way to unassign the drive letter later? Wpi;d having a drive letter make it show up in "My Computer"?
Yes. Drive letter can be later removed.
What about the 532 MB Recovery partition? Do I even need one of those? Do you recommend one?
No need for those. You can get rid of all the recovery partitions.
You can access all the recovery functionality by booting from windows installation media.
 

egderic

Commendable
Jun 14, 2018
17
1
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@SkyNetRising, I tried creating a boot partition like you said. I then tried disconnecting Disk 2 and booting, but it still tells me that there's no OS to boot from unless I plug it back in.

Here are all my Drives in case you want to see them:
Disk 3 is the one I want to use for my OS. Oddly enough, that is where I'm operating from, it's just that it can't boot unless disk 2 is connected.

 
I tried creating a boot partition like you said. I then tried disconnecting Disk 2 and booting, but it still tells me that there's no OS to boot from unless I plug it back in.
Did you execute those commands from elevated command prompt? (like instructed)
Did you get any errors?

Repeat last part.
Assign drive letter J: to 500MB efi system partition on Disk 3.
Execute from elevated command prompt
bcdboot c:\windows /s J:
Show screenshot with command output.
 

Endre

Respectable
Apr 30, 2019
722
128
2,090
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Hi there,

I have a drive that had the OS installed on it, with an extra partition for my files.

You can see it here:



Now my OS/programs are on an SSD, so I don't need this drive for the OS anymore, but I'd like to continue using this HDD for files. Is there a way to merge all of Media(G) into all of the other partitions on this disk without losing any of the data in Media(G)?
When I right-click on any of the other partitions - except for the Unallocated section - I don't get any options. On Media (G), I get the option to extend, but I don't know what will happen if I do. Even if it works, I still end up with these other partitions there, which I don't think I need anymore.
Hello!
Please use these steps:
  1. Copy all of your files from G to another drive.
  2. Delete all partitions of Disk 2 (you’ll end up with a big “unallocated” space).
  3. Right-click on this new “unallocated” space/ Create partition/ Format partition as NTFS/ Assign a name and a letter to this partition.
  4. Copy back the files that you previously had on G.
That’s it.
 

egderic

Commendable
Jun 14, 2018
17
1
1,515
0
That's very strange, I don't see CSM or Secure boot anywhere in the BIOS boot options. My motherboard is a P8P67 Pro. I tried the removing WBM and re-adding it, still no dice.
 

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