Some hard-drive setups waste space — even on brand-new systems. Here’s how to make sure every bit of your drive is available for use.
Plus: Getting files off a password-protected PC, running Microsoft Works and Money on Windows 8, and solving email file-attachment woes.
New laptop doesn’t make full use of HDD
Reader Anas Khan has a new PC, but the hard drive isn’t set up well.
- “There’s 42MB of unallocated space on my new Lenovo laptop, as configured by the company. I don’t have any idea why it’s there. I could use some help with this problem.”
Unallocated space is any portion of the drive that’s empty and not assigned to a partition. It’s basically wasted space. (You want to ensure that the “empty” space is truly unallocated — and not a protected or hidden OEM recovery partition.)
On new drives, unallocated space can be due to a manufacturing shortcut. The vendor installs a disk image that’s designed for a smaller drive but then doesn’t extend the new system’s partition to use the entire drive.
You can easily correct this yourself by expanding or extending an existing partition to include the wasted space.