Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I've got a hard disk with only one partition I'd like to keep (NTFS). The drive has held Windows 7, XP and different GNU/Linux distros, and now all partitions have been deleted and only the one I want to keep is still there.

When trying to install Windows XP (I want to install it on a new first partition in the disk), I see the partition selection screen already shows the old partition with my data as drive C:. I've tried creating a new partition in the first section of the disk, and installing XP there. Everything goes fine, but Windows ends up installed in drive D: and all my data is in drive C:.

I've tried the MS workarounds described somewhere about changing some registry values, but didn't suceed with that. Also saw that these workarounds are more likely to cause more issues, so I think it'd be better indeed to install Windows on a C: drive in the first place.

The drive has GPT partitions if I remember correctly. What can I do to get the Windows installer to see the new partition as C: ?

share|improve this question
up vote 1 down vote accepted

The best way I know to do this is to use a partition manager to first create the new install-target partition and set it as primary, and possibly to even "hide" the existing one. Despite the current parition being hidden, Windows will still see it, but I believe that the installer will default to call the new, primary, partition C:. And the installer simply doesn't care what the order of the partitions is on the disk, it instead cares about the way the partition is configured.

share|improve this answer
I guess I could use any partition manager on a live Linux distro. – Xavi López Oct 14 '13 at 7:30
Yes, or Easus Partition Manager (the free edition should be able to do this.) – Debra Oct 14 '13 at 16:56
I created and formatted a primary partition with GParted and set the bootable flag. The windows installer now sees it as C:. I noticed with GParted that the partition created with the windows installer was logical. Thanks for the tips, now it look quite obvious to me :) – Xavi López Oct 14 '13 at 22:08
Thanks for posting back your details for the resolution; it helps others. – Debra Oct 14 '13 at 23:53

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.