Local Disk drive Letter

By Brian Carver ·
My symptoms are little complex, so apologies for the rather long post.
Following spam mail difficulties through no fault of my own with Sky Broadband, I was forced to reformat my hard disk, once by myself and twice by a Computer repair shop (who had to provide a written report that he had done so). The second time he replaced my hard disk with a Maxtor STM 3250820A model. I cannot say if the replacement disk was new or not and the dealer will not say. He did not charge me for the second lot of work and now has little interest in helping me. I did give him my original XP disk to use.
However checking with Belarc Advisor under the software section shows a different XP product key than the one I have with my disk.
Since this happened some 4 weeks ago I have the following problems with my PC.
1/ The local disk (Maxtor) has a drive letter ?L? not C: as is normal. My Computer show that this disk has a capacity of 127 GB, with used space of 8.50 GB. The Seagate/Maxtor web site shows that this model should have a capacity of 250 GB. Where I wonder has 114.5 GB gone to?
2/ Drive letter C is allocated to a removable disk.
3/ My DVD-RAM drive is now G (was D).
4/ My DVD drive is now H (was E).
5/ I keep getting the following error messages when I run certain programs in particular SpyBot Search and Destroy. Pressing cancel, retry, or abort has no effect. I have to shut down the program to get rid of the error message.


Exception Processing Message c0000013 Parameters 75b6bf9c 475b6bf9c 75b6bf9c.?

I also get the following error message when I try to use the Google shortcut on my desktop, although Google does come up.
?Windows cannot find Make sure that you typed the name correctly and then try it again. To search for a file click the Start button and click search.?

I have a feeling that the root cause of all these problems is the miss-name of my local disk. As I now have very little currently installed on my PC I am happy to reformat again and reload my XP, but am unsure if this would automatically detect my local disk as C or not.
I have also read Microsoft article 223188, which details how to change a local drive letter.
My question is:Has any one had similar problems and found any solutions. If so I would be interested to hear.
Thanks in advance Brian

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by bincarnato In reply to Local Disk drive Letter

Probably the best solution here is to reload from scratch, since you indicated that you wouldn't have a problem doing that. You can't change the drive letter of the drive the your OS runs on. When you start the process, you need to delete the existing partitions on the drive when Windows Setup asks, it will then create a new one as the "C" drive and install to that partition. If your drive is in fact 250GB, it should indicate that in Windows XP setup. If it doesn't, then you should check with who made your PC or system board to see if it will support a drive that big and if so, is there a BIOS update available that will enable it to see that large of a disk.

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Read the first post

by IC-IT In reply to Local Disk drive Letter

Bincarnato has the right idea.
The current XP install was likely from a pre-SP1 disk. XP could not acknowledge over 127GB until after the first Service Pack.

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READ ME 1st - 48 lba large disk access

by 1bn0 In reply to Local Disk drive Letter

There is more than one thing to consider for drives over 127gb on windows XP.

Operating System Support
Bios Support

XP SP1 DOES support 48 bit LBA but you have to make sure the atapi.sys is the correct version and you have to edit the registry to turn on EnableBigLba. Read the KB article.

Your motherboard BIOS ALSO needs to support 48 bit LBA. If it doesn't. STOP. Don't waste your time, it is not going to work.

Windows will use the first 127 gb of the HDD without problems. The rest just ends up being wasted space.

This is a separate issue from your other problems.

I do agree you should re-install. If you don't have any data to lose by doing so. I'm not sure how you would enable 48 bit LBA on a fresh install. Read the linked articles. If they don't say keep looking. Or just format at 127gb and go with it.

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by Brian Carver In reply to READ ME 1st - 48 lba larg ...

My previous Hard disk did have a useful capacity of 180GB, so presumably I do not have a 48 bit LBA issue.
I am going to reinstall XP and will let you know if it solves the problems.

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Similar Situation

by archwparsons In reply to Local Disk drive Letter

I had Windows XP install to drive F (not quite as high up as L). Why this happened I do not know. I simply partitioned and formatted the new drive as one large drive. I did not notice the drive letter designation until the installation was finished. I had no problems for a month or so. Today I messed up my login accounts and wanted to fix it by repairing or reinstalling Windows but now it wants to go to C: and I can't edit this! Sometimes a "removable disk" shows up as C. Other times I cannot find a c: even in MSDOS! Did you find a solution and or a cause?

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Started from scratch

by archwparsons In reply to Similar Situation

I decided that having the XP assigned to the letter F: was likely the cause of some of my login problems. I deleted the partition and reinstalled from scratch. Now that it's on drive letter C with one user the login is automatic anyway. I still don't know what went wrong the first time, though.

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