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Hard drive space missing

Trish's Escape from Hardware Hell Help Board » Hardware » Hard Drive and Storage Related » Hard drive space missing « Previous Next »

Author Message
david morgan
Posted on Monday, March 18, 2002 - 1:55 pm:   

i have a maxtor 20gb hard disk that windows is only seeing as 2gb.also fdisk only sees it as 2gb.anybody know why.
Matt Weston (Matt12330)
Posted on Monday, March 18, 2002 - 6:46 pm:   

Sounds like you need to configure the drive in the BIOS. If there is an "auto detect hard drive" feature, try it. Otherwise, you may need to set it manually. See Maxtors web site for details on manual configuration settings for that particular drive.

Let me know how you fare - this would be the easiest explanation.....
Posted on Friday, March 22, 2002 - 2:59 am:   

Would wonder if the disk was formatted without large disk support option when using fdisk.

Posted on Friday, March 22, 2002 - 7:43 am:   

Similar problem to David. We tried to format a 20 gb hard drive, but it kept telling us it was only 500 meg! We tried it on another computer and it still only saw a 500 meg. We tried auto detect and it recognised it as a 20 gb but when we looked in my computer again it only saw the 500 meg. Who has stolen the rest of our hard drive????? any help would be appreciated
Matt Weston (Matt12330)
Posted on Friday, March 22, 2002 - 5:53 pm:   

I'm wondering if you have non-DOS partitions on the HD. Linux or other OS partitions won't be visible to Windows.

FDISK should give you an option to display all partition info. See if you have a non-dos partition or two on the disk. Also make sure that all space on the drive has been assigned to a partition.

Is there any overlay software installed on this drive ? I had a problem once like this, and I had to uninstall EZ-drive before I could fix it.
Post back and let me know.
Posted on Saturday, March 23, 2002 - 5:11 am:   

Well no one has mentioned what Operating System, boards, etc. are being used. This info is important in order to help.

So here's my assumptions:

David, Sounds like your problem comes from the FAT16 Limitation. What is your OS and version?

Check out for more info on the necessary FAT32.


Your drive is probably set to Standard mode in the CMOS which the limitation is 16 heads and 1,024 cylinders which gives equals 504/540MB. Enter CMOS and enable LBA mode. If LBA is not an option, see if your mobo mftg. has a BIOS upgrade oe it's probably time to get a new board.

Well, that's my 2 cents worth of opinion by assumption. Hope it helps.
Posted on Saturday, March 23, 2002 - 9:07 am:   

Thanks for the input. Will try out your suggestions and see if that cures the problem. Once again, thanks for the help

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