Shareware Beach

Friday, 9 September 2005

Back in Action II

Filed under: Personal — Jan @ 12:11

I was back in action, but it didn’t last long. Soon after I had put the new system together, the hard disk started acting up. I had reused all the drives from my previous system. Since I don’t like taking chances with my data, I went out to buy a new disk, a nice 250GB SATA drive.

Unfortunately, getting the system up and running with the new drive took way longer than I expected. I freshly installed Windows XP (which I use as a scratchpad for beta testing etc.), and restored my Windows 2000 development partition from a backup. All that went quite well.

Trouble began when I started copying over all my stuff onto the data partition, now a whopping 160GB with 30GB of stuff on it. Windows 2000 seemed to copy and read back all the data just fine, but when I rebooted in XP, it would tell me the data partition needed a disk check, and proceed to find thousands of errors. XP seemed to fix the errors just fine. But every time I touched the disk with Windows 2000, XP would act up, but not the other way around.

So I figured my Windows 2000 SP3 installation couldn’t deal with the huge hard disk, even though it didn’t give me any error messages. Trying to locate a solution using Google proved to be very frustrating. Looking for issues with large hard disks got me lots of sites trying to sell me a new disk. Looking for Windows 2000 SP4 and NTFS got me lots of information about Windows NT 4.0 SP4 issues with NTFS. (I was reluctant to install SP4, since I previously ran into some troubles installing SP4 on another system.)

Finally, I thought maybe reinstalling Windows 2000 on top of the existing installation would make it properly detect my new large hard disk. While scanning the disk, the setup mentioned my disk was 131070 in size. So I googled for “131070 MB Windows 2000″, and immediately found a newsgroup discussion pointing to the fix: I needed to add one stupid registry value. So I did, and now I’m back in action!

Don’t ask me why Windows 2000 SP3, which supports hard disk larger than 131070 MB just fine (unlike SP2 and earlier), needs a registry item to actually enable that support. I bet few people buy a big hard disk to use only part of it.

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