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Microsoft KB Archive/102531

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Knowledge Base

Drive Changed to New Partition During Drive Creation

Article ID: 102531

Article Last Modified on 11/1/2006


  • Microsoft Windows NT Advanced Server 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Advanced Server 3.1

This article was previously published under Q102531


Consider this drive layout:

    |  c:   |   d:   |  free space  |

Where d: is where Windows NT is installed, AND it is a "logical drive" (extended partition).

In this layout, the arcnames could be described:

    scsi(0)disk(x)rdisk(0)partition(1)   c: drive
    scsi(0)disk(x)rdisk(0)partition(2)   d: drive

If you go into windisk and create a new drive where the free space is, your arcnames change to:

    |  c:   |   d:   |   e:  |

    scsi(0)disk(x)rdisk(0)partition(1)   c: drive
    scsi(0)disk(x)rdisk(0)partition(3)   d: drive
    scsi(0)disk(x)rdisk(0)partition(2)   e: drive

The d: drive becomes partition(3).

NOTE: If the free space where e: was made is already within the extended region, this arcname change does not occur.

You can encounter this problem any time you boot from a "logical partition" then make a new real partition on the same disk.


This change occurs because there can be only one extended region in the partition table of physical sector 0 on the drive, and it is always placed last in the table.

Windisk knows you just changed the Windows NT boot tree from partition(2) to partition(3). It cannot pop up a message telling you to edit BOOT.INI, and change the 2 to a 3, so it generates an access violation

Nothing is destroyed; your disk and the Windows NT tree are still there.


  1. If your c: drive is FAT, do the following:
    1. Boot MS-DOS.
    2. Attrib -r -s -h BOOT.INI.
    3. Edit BOOT.INI.
    4. Change partition(x) to partition(x+1).

    If your c: drive is not FAT, go to another computer and format a floppy disk. It will now have the Windows NT boot sector on it.

  2. Copy NTLDR, NTDETECT.COM, and BOOT.INI to it.
  3. Edit BOOT.INI, and start guessing as to what the arcname of your Windows NT root is.

Additional query words: prodnt

Keywords: KB102531