Why does my Toshiba Satellite hard drive have a second partition?

By Gixermark
Oct 10, 2012
Post New Reply
  1. Hi all

    Please can someone help?

    We own a Toshiba Satalite laptop with 500gb HD. Today whilst trying to download a file I had a warning message saying no disc space left!!!!

    Confused by this I looked at the computer spec to notice 2 drives, C & D. I am no IT expert but think I'm correct its actually only I disc but partitioned into 2 drives, hence giving me C / D drives.

    Here's where I am lost though! The C drive is almost full yet the D drive has only the original HDD recovery made when we 1st had the laptop, & is almost empty ( 240 odd gb left! )

    Why is nothing on the D drive and to free up space on the C drive, how can I transfer various items from C to D? Do I simply copy - paste then delete from C or is it more complicated? Also, if I wanted to download straight to the D drive is this possible & if so, how is this carried out?

    Hope some of you don't think the above is a bit dumb to ask but I really don't know what to look for and how to solve our usage problem other than asking for your help!

    Many thanks in advance

    Mark from Hereford, Uk
  2. Modena

    Modena TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 182

    Honestly I'm kind of confused, but I'll try anyways... So you're 500GB HD is partitioned into 2 240GB partitions, correct? If this is the case the 1st one that is full is the partition where windows is located on, and is set to automatically save you're files to that partition. What you can do is move you're large files onto the D partition to make use of that space.

    It can be a simple as copy/pasting you're files into that drive, or you can also set it to route anything saved to a certain file to the 2nd partition. For example, my "Downloads" folder automatically saves to my Data partition on my PC. Do do this simply go to whatever file it happens to be, right-click, properties, location, and from there click move and choose the 2nd partition. Hope this helps.
  3. temporae

    temporae Newcomer, in training

    More than likely, it is the case that the second partition was a "System Restore" partition designed for situations where you had to bring the system back to a factory settings state. I mention this because one of my laptops has the exact same quirk, though the second partition used as a "Recovery" partition is less than 10 GB. I assume your HDD's situation is similar?
  4. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 13,031   +222

    That's correct. 99% of the OEM preinstalled systems come with an active C: drive and a recovery partition - - which is not always mapped to a drive letter.

    Kind of poor that there's so much waste in the recovery partition. Perhaps you could google for tools to adjust partition sizes - - BUT BE SURE you have a backup before you take this approach - - errors will be fatal.
  5. alerub

    alerub Newcomer, in training

    You almost certainly have a restore partition, which is standard for brand name computers & laptops, as noted by others above. What is strange is its large size -- it should be small, like just a few gigs -- so the incorrect size suggests something went wrong with the partition sometime in the past. If you want to recover all that space, you should make a set of restore discs, which is always an option in the factory-installed software suite--it's usually a part of the Windows OS utilities as installed by the factory. Then, with the security of having a restore option available, you can delete the restore files on that partition [they're redundant once you have a set of restore discs to use in case you need to restore from scratch] & then you could reformat that partition for better use. You might also resize both partitions to permit a separate partition for data/documents/photos/music storage, apart from the OS & application programs.
    That used to be, & for many still is, standard practice, no matter which OS you use. It's easier to back up just the OS & apps, & likewise your data files, instead of having everything lumped together on a single drive letter/partition.
  6. Pan Wah

    Pan Wah TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 134   +27

    Why not just shrink the recovery partition to a sensible size e.g. a bit bigger than needed for the recovery files, then extend the main system partition (or create a third "data" partition)? (but still backup before proceeding;) )
  7. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 4,492   +73

    Can use Windows 7 Administrative Tools Computer Management + Disk Management
    Delete that Partition then use the Disk Management to Expand the hard drive to use that extra space. C / D (Recovery) this is only if you don't want to keep Toshiba Recovery anymore. That's your move. Best to leave alone for now.


Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...


Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.