Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Capture unallocated disk space from an XP to Windows 7 dual-boot migration

In the first article in this series, Create a Windows XP and 7 dual-boot system staged for an easy migration, I showed you how to resize your existing Windows XP partition and then install Windows 7 in a dual-boot configuration on the same hard disk. In the second article in this series, Migrate to Windows 7 from an XP dual-boot configuration, I showed you how to safely undo the Windows XP and 7 dual-boot system, remove Windows XP, and just boot Windows 7 as your primary OS.

As you’ll remember, after completing the steps in the second article, your system boots up in Windows 7, just as if it was the only partition on the hard disk; however, the partition that used to hold Windows XP is still at the beginning of the disk and marked as unallocated.

Fortunately, I tracked down Partition Wizard Home Edition, which in addition to supporting Windows 2000/XP/Vista, provides support for Windows 7 — both 32 bit and 64 bit. Partition Wizard Home Edition is a Free partition manager from MT Solution that is easy to use and will allow you to redistribute that unallocated space at the beginning of the hard disk back to drive C, thus making Windows 7 the first and only partition on the hard disk.

In this edition of the Windows Vista and Windows 7 Report, I’ll show you how to use Partition Wizard Home Edition to safely accomplish this operation.