Locking drive letters to partitions

Discussion in 'Windows 64bit' started by johnsuth@nospam.com.au, Aug 24, 2009.

  1. Guest

    Is there a way in XP x64 and Win7 x64 to lock drive letters to partitions so
    that disabling or removing one hard drive will not shift drive letters on
    another.
    , Aug 24, 2009
    #1
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  2. If you use Disk Manager (diskmgmt.msc) to explicitly set a drive letter, it
    should continue to be respected if you later remove a drive in front of it.
    And, certainly, should one shift down a letter, you can go in and fix that
    and shift them back up. The exception to all of this, of course, is the
    system drive - you can't change it.

    --
    Charlie.
    http://msmvps.com/blogs/xperts64
    http://mvp.support.microsoft.com/profile/charlie.russel


    <> wrote in message
    news:c1.2c.3H5ck2$...
    > Is there a way in XP x64 and Win7 x64 to lock drive letters to partitions
    > so
    > that disabling or removing one hard drive will not shift drive letters on
    > another.
    >
    >
    Charlie Russel - MVP, Aug 24, 2009
    #2
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  3. Carlos Guest

    And the same concept also applies to external hard drives and pen drives.
    :)
    Carlos

    "Charlie Russel - MVP" wrote:

    > If you use Disk Manager (diskmgmt.msc) to explicitly set a drive letter, it
    > should continue to be respected if you later remove a drive in front of it.
    > And, certainly, should one shift down a letter, you can go in and fix that
    > and shift them back up. The exception to all of this, of course, is the
    > system drive - you can't change it.
    >
    > --
    > Charlie.
    > http://msmvps.com/blogs/xperts64
    > http://mvp.support.microsoft.com/profile/charlie.russel
    >
    >
    > <> wrote in message
    > news:c1.2c.3H5ck2$...
    > > Is there a way in XP x64 and Win7 x64 to lock drive letters to partitions
    > > so
    > > that disabling or removing one hard drive will not shift drive letters on
    > > another.
    > >
    > >

    >
    >
    Carlos, Aug 24, 2009
    #3
  4. R. C. White Guest

    Hi, Charlie.

    > The exception to all of this, of course, is the system drive - you can't
    > change it.


    The System Volume AND the Boot Volume. They often are the same, but also
    often are NOT the same. Disk Management's Status column will identify each
    of them. But older versions of Disk Management (Win2K/XP) show only a
    single Status label, even if multiple statuses apply to a volume.

    For the definition of System Volume and Boot Volume (which are backwards
    from what most users expect), see KB 314470.

    RC
    --
    R. C. White, CPA
    San Marcos, TX

    Microsoft Windows MVP
    Windows Live Mail 2009 (14.0.8089.0726) in Win7 Ultimate x64

    "Charlie Russel - MVP" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > If you use Disk Manager (diskmgmt.msc) to explicitly set a drive letter,
    > it should continue to be respected if you later remove a drive in front of
    > it. And, certainly, should one shift down a letter, you can go in and fix
    > that and shift them back up. The exception to all of this, of course, is
    > the system drive - you can't change it.
    >
    > --
    > Charlie.
    >
    > <> wrote in message
    > news:c1.2c.3H5ck2$...
    >> Is there a way in XP x64 and Win7 x64 to lock drive letters to partitions
    >> so
    >> that disabling or removing one hard drive will not shift drive letters on
    >> another.
    R. C. White, Aug 24, 2009
    #4
  5. yes, if you explicitly set the drive letter of a removeable disk, such as a
    pen drive, it will get mapped to that same drive letter the next time it's
    seen. In fact, this will hold right up until you re-install the OS. Once you
    boot from the installation CD/DVD and start the install, those mappings go
    away. But if you run setup from inside Windows, they should be respected.
    (Darrell pointed this out way back when we were first here as one of the
    differences between a "repair install" and an "in place upgrade" to move
    from the eval version to the real version.)

    --
    Charlie.
    http://msmvps.com/blogs/xperts64
    http://mvp.support.microsoft.com/profile/charlie.russel


    "Carlos" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > And the same concept also applies to external hard drives and pen drives.
    > :)
    > Carlos
    >
    > "Charlie Russel - MVP" wrote:
    >
    >> If you use Disk Manager (diskmgmt.msc) to explicitly set a drive letter,
    >> it
    >> should continue to be respected if you later remove a drive in front of
    >> it.
    >> And, certainly, should one shift down a letter, you can go in and fix
    >> that
    >> and shift them back up. The exception to all of this, of course, is the
    >> system drive - you can't change it.
    >>
    >> --
    >> Charlie.
    >> http://msmvps.com/blogs/xperts64
    >> http://mvp.support.microsoft.com/profile/charlie.russel
    >>
    >>
    >> <> wrote in message
    >> news:c1.2c.3H5ck2$...
    >> > Is there a way in XP x64 and Win7 x64 to lock drive letters to
    >> > partitions
    >> > so
    >> > that disabling or removing one hard drive will not shift drive letters
    >> > on
    >> > another.
    >> >
    >> >

    >>
    >>
    Charlie Russel - MVP, Aug 24, 2009
    #5
  6. good point. Yes, they're often the same, but won't be moving forward with
    Win7/R2 and later, since the install wants to create a small boot volume to
    support BitLocker functionality. So folks need to get used to that. Of
    course, there is no requirement that the boot volume have a drive letter at
    all.

    --
    Charlie.
    http://msmvps.com/blogs/xperts64
    http://mvp.support.microsoft.com/profile/charlie.russel


    "R. C. White" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Hi, Charlie.
    >
    >> The exception to all of this, of course, is the system drive - you can't
    >> change it.

    >
    > The System Volume AND the Boot Volume. They often are the same, but also
    > often are NOT the same. Disk Management's Status column will identify
    > each of them. But older versions of Disk Management (Win2K/XP) show only
    > a single Status label, even if multiple statuses apply to a volume.
    >
    > For the definition of System Volume and Boot Volume (which are backwards
    > from what most users expect), see KB 314470.
    >
    > RC
    > --
    > R. C. White, CPA
    > San Marcos, TX
    >
    > Microsoft Windows MVP
    > Windows Live Mail 2009 (14.0.8089.0726) in Win7 Ultimate x64
    >
    > "Charlie Russel - MVP" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >> If you use Disk Manager (diskmgmt.msc) to explicitly set a drive letter,
    >> it should continue to be respected if you later remove a drive in front
    >> of it. And, certainly, should one shift down a letter, you can go in and
    >> fix that and shift them back up. The exception to all of this, of course,
    >> is the system drive - you can't change it.
    >>
    >> --
    >> Charlie.
    >>
    >> <> wrote in message
    >> news:c1.2c.3H5ck2$...
    >>> Is there a way in XP x64 and Win7 x64 to lock drive letters to
    >>> partitions so
    >>> that disabling or removing one hard drive will not shift drive letters
    >>> on
    >>> another.

    >
    Charlie Russel - MVP, Aug 24, 2009
    #6
  7. R. C. White Guest

    Hi, Charlie.

    > Of course, there is no requirement that the boot volume have a drive
    > letter at all.


    The boot volume? Or the system volume? (See KB 314470 - and Disk
    Management's Status column.)

    Remember, as Ed Bott and others say, "We boot from the system volume and
    keep the operating system files in the boot volume."

    While I haven't yet seen it in action, my understanding is that Win7 creates
    a small system volume - with no drive letter, by default. And it assigns C:
    to whichever we choose as the new Win7's boot volume, even if that is the
    3rd partition on the second HDD. But it does this only when booted from the
    Win7 DVD (and maybe only on a "virgin" HDD with no existing Windows
    installation - which is why I haven't seen it). When we install Win7 by
    running its Setup from an already-installed Windows desktop, Win7 "inherits"
    existing drive letters, including the letters for the system volume and for
    whichever partition we choose to become the boot volume for installing the
    new Win7.

    My testing of different install behaviors is limited since I have only a
    single computer. But I have several HDDs (4, but counted as 3 because 2 are
    in a RAID 1 mirror) and I've created lots of logical drives on them (I'm
    running out of alphabet for drive letters). So I usually have a long lineup
    of volumes with several WinXP/Vista/Win7 beta and RTM installations, in
    addition to my Data, Archive and other volumes (DVD, USB, etc.). I make
    sure that the first partition on each HDD is a System Volume: an Active
    primary partition that includes startup files so that I can boot from Disk 1
    or Disk 2 if Disk 0 is damaged.

    RC
    --
    R. C. White, CPA
    San Marcos, TX

    Microsoft Windows MVP
    Windows Live Mail 2009 (14.0.8089.0726) in Win7 Ultimate x64

    "Charlie Russel - MVP" <> wrote in message
    news:#...
    > good point. Yes, they're often the same, but won't be moving forward with
    > Win7/R2 and later, since the install wants to create a small boot volume
    > to support BitLocker functionality. So folks need to get used to that. Of
    > course, there is no requirement that the boot volume have a drive letter
    > at all.
    >
    > --
    > Charlie.
    > http://msmvps.com/blogs/xperts64
    > http://mvp.support.microsoft.com/profile/charlie.russel
    >
    >
    > "R. C. White" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >> Hi, Charlie.
    >>
    >>> The exception to all of this, of course, is the system drive - you can't
    >>> change it.

    >>
    >> The System Volume AND the Boot Volume. They often are the same, but also
    >> often are NOT the same. Disk Management's Status column will identify
    >> each of them. But older versions of Disk Management (Win2K/XP) show only
    >> a single Status label, even if multiple statuses apply to a volume.
    >>
    >> For the definition of System Volume and Boot Volume (which are backwards
    >> from what most users expect), see KB 314470.
    >>
    >> RC
    >>
    >> "Charlie Russel - MVP" <> wrote in message
    >> news:...
    >>> If you use Disk Manager (diskmgmt.msc) to explicitly set a drive letter,
    >>> it should continue to be respected if you later remove a drive in front
    >>> of it. And, certainly, should one shift down a letter, you can go in and
    >>> fix that and shift them back up. The exception to all of this, of
    >>> course, is the system drive - you can't change it.
    >>>
    >>> --
    >>> Charlie.
    >>>
    >>> <> wrote in message
    >>> news:c1.2c.3H5ck2$...
    >>>> Is there a way in XP x64 and Win7 x64 to lock drive letters to
    >>>> partitions so
    >>>> that disabling or removing one hard drive will not shift drive letters
    >>>> on
    >>>> another.
    R. C. White, Aug 25, 2009
    #7
  8. I would have to say Ed Bott is correct if he's talking about a clean
    install of Windows 7 without any existing partitions. Win 7 creates a
    100MB System Reserved partition and the rest of the drive is labeled as
    having Boot, Page File, Crash Dump, and Primary Partition.


    R. C. White wrote:
    > Hi, Charlie.
    >
    >> Of course, there is no requirement that the boot volume have a drive
    >> letter at all.

    >
    > The boot volume? Or the system volume? (See KB 314470 - and Disk
    > Management's Status column.)
    >
    > Remember, as Ed Bott and others say, "We boot from the system volume and
    > keep the operating system files in the boot volume."
    >
    > While I haven't yet seen it in action, my understanding is that Win7
    > creates a small system volume - with no drive letter, by default. And
    > it assigns C: to whichever we choose as the new Win7's boot volume, even
    > if that is the 3rd partition on the second HDD. But it does this only
    > when booted from the Win7 DVD (and maybe only on a "virgin" HDD with no
    > existing Windows installation - which is why I haven't seen it). When
    > we install Win7 by running its Setup from an already-installed Windows
    > desktop, Win7 "inherits" existing drive letters, including the letters
    > for the system volume and for whichever partition we choose to become
    > the boot volume for installing the new Win7.
    >
    > My testing of different install behaviors is limited since I have only a
    > single computer. But I have several HDDs (4, but counted as 3 because 2
    > are in a RAID 1 mirror) and I've created lots of logical drives on them
    > (I'm running out of alphabet for drive letters). So I usually have a
    > long lineup of volumes with several WinXP/Vista/Win7 beta and RTM
    > installations, in addition to my Data, Archive and other volumes (DVD,
    > USB, etc.). I make sure that the first partition on each HDD is a
    > System Volume: an Active primary partition that includes startup files
    > so that I can boot from Disk 1 or Disk 2 if Disk 0 is damaged.
    >
    > RC
    Bobby Johnson, Aug 25, 2009
    #8
  9. Yes, you're right, they're backwards. If Win7's installer sees an existing
    filesystem on the volume you select as the boot volume, it won't create the
    system volume. If it creates the volume and filesystem, it will calve off a
    100 Mb system volume that has no drive letter, and when you boot, whatever
    volume is the boot volume will end up with a C: designation, regardless of
    what it would normally be based on drive enumeration order.

    The reason for this is to save them having to have a tool to carve out that
    space for BitLocker. And one suspects anything else they might want to have
    protected away from prying eyes at some point in the future.

    --
    Charlie.
    http://msmvps.com/blogs/xperts64
    http://mvp.support.microsoft.com/profile/charlie.russel


    "R. C. White" <> wrote in message
    news:%...
    > Hi, Charlie.
    >
    >> Of course, there is no requirement that the boot volume have a drive
    >> letter at all.

    >
    > The boot volume? Or the system volume? (See KB 314470 - and Disk
    > Management's Status column.)
    >
    > Remember, as Ed Bott and others say, "We boot from the system volume and
    > keep the operating system files in the boot volume."
    >
    > While I haven't yet seen it in action, my understanding is that Win7
    > creates a small system volume - with no drive letter, by default. And it
    > assigns C: to whichever we choose as the new Win7's boot volume, even if
    > that is the 3rd partition on the second HDD. But it does this only when
    > booted from the Win7 DVD (and maybe only on a "virgin" HDD with no
    > existing Windows installation - which is why I haven't seen it). When we
    > install Win7 by running its Setup from an already-installed Windows
    > desktop, Win7 "inherits" existing drive letters, including the letters for
    > the system volume and for whichever partition we choose to become the boot
    > volume for installing the new Win7.
    >
    > My testing of different install behaviors is limited since I have only a
    > single computer. But I have several HDDs (4, but counted as 3 because 2
    > are in a RAID 1 mirror) and I've created lots of logical drives on them
    > (I'm running out of alphabet for drive letters). So I usually have a long
    > lineup of volumes with several WinXP/Vista/Win7 beta and RTM
    > installations, in addition to my Data, Archive and other volumes (DVD,
    > USB, etc.). I make sure that the first partition on each HDD is a System
    > Volume: an Active primary partition that includes startup files so that I
    > can boot from Disk 1 or Disk 2 if Disk 0 is damaged.
    >
    > RC
    > --
    > R. C. White, CPA
    > San Marcos, TX
    >
    > Microsoft Windows MVP
    > Windows Live Mail 2009 (14.0.8089.0726) in Win7 Ultimate x64
    >
    > "Charlie Russel - MVP" <> wrote in message
    > news:#...
    >> good point. Yes, they're often the same, but won't be moving forward with
    >> Win7/R2 and later, since the install wants to create a small boot volume
    >> to support BitLocker functionality. So folks need to get used to that. Of
    >> course, there is no requirement that the boot volume have a drive letter
    >> at all.
    >>
    >> --
    >> Charlie.
    >> http://msmvps.com/blogs/xperts64
    >> http://mvp.support.microsoft.com/profile/charlie.russel
    >>
    >>
    >> "R. C. White" <> wrote in message
    >> news:...
    >>> Hi, Charlie.
    >>>
    >>>> The exception to all of this, of course, is the system drive - you
    >>>> can't change it.
    >>>
    >>> The System Volume AND the Boot Volume. They often are the same, but
    >>> also often are NOT the same. Disk Management's Status column will
    >>> identify each of them. But older versions of Disk Management (Win2K/XP)
    >>> show only a single Status label, even if multiple statuses apply to a
    >>> volume.
    >>>
    >>> For the definition of System Volume and Boot Volume (which are backwards
    >>> from what most users expect), see KB 314470.
    >>>
    >>> RC
    >>>
    >>> "Charlie Russel - MVP" <> wrote in
    >>> message news:...
    >>>> If you use Disk Manager (diskmgmt.msc) to explicitly set a drive
    >>>> letter, it should continue to be respected if you later remove a drive
    >>>> in front of it. And, certainly, should one shift down a letter, you can
    >>>> go in and fix that and shift them back up. The exception to all of
    >>>> this, of course, is the system drive - you can't change it.
    >>>>
    >>>> --
    >>>> Charlie.
    >>>>
    >>>> <> wrote in message
    >>>> news:c1.2c.3H5ck2$...
    >>>>> Is there a way in XP x64 and Win7 x64 to lock drive letters to
    >>>>> partitions so
    >>>>> that disabling or removing one hard drive will not shift drive letters
    >>>>> on
    >>>>> another.

    >
    Charlie Russel - MVP, Aug 25, 2009
    #9
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