New hard drive assigned wrong drive letter..

vomacka

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Mar 11, 2012
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I recently installed a new WD 160Gb drive. I partitioned, formated (NTFS) and installed Windows XP SP3 (using the Windows XP setup program). However, the system has reversed my CD drive and the HD letters.

It gave the HD "E" and the CD drive "C". (It should be the other way around) I can not change the HD letter back to "C". It says I can't change the boot volume letter assignment.

I set the boot sequence in the bios to boot from the CD first, the way it should be for installing a OS, right?

What did I do wrong? Why did it assign my CD drive "C" and my HD to "E"?

Scott
 

dalaran

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Jun 7, 2011
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I don't think you can change it back, short of reinstalling.
Too many elements in your registry will have been pointed at the E: drive trying to move the windows install will likely cause all sorts of issues.

I'm not too sure how this could have happened though, I don't think it's boot order related.

I only have 2 hypothesis right now
Either you had some hardware installed that reserved the few drive letters (floopy, card readers). If so try reinstalling without them installed.

Since your using winxp I assume it's an older machine? Are your drives (CD and HD) IDE drives? If so is your main HD set as master on the first IDE channel?
I'm assuming having the CD drive as master and the HD drive as slaved might have caused this although it would be slightly far-fetched
 

dalaran

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Jun 7, 2011
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I wouldn't try what's mentioned in that article.

First sentence from the article :
"For the most part, this is not recommended, especially if the drive letter is the same as when Windows was installed."

The article also provided a link to the following page which states the same thing http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=223188

Reinstalling without the zip drive might work but I assume you'll still need the CD drive