I recently upgraded my laptop's secondary HDD from a 320GB Western Digital to a 640GB Samsung. Before performing the hardware swap, I created a disk image of my drive, and saved it to an external USB drive. I swapped the hardware, and then restored the image from USB to my new internal drive.

The problem is, Windows 7 still reports only ~300GB total disk space (equivalent to the 320GB drive) when it should be showing ~600GB. The partition manager sees the partition, and correctly reports that the partition is ~600GB in size. But the file explorer disagrees, only showing the original 300GB of disk space.

I'm assuming this is a problem with the MFT that was transferred as a part of the imaging process, but I'm not sure.

Any help you fine folks can provide would certainly be appreciated. Thanks in advance!

  • 2
    This should really be over on Superuser.
    – cdhowie
    Nov 12, 2010 at 19:07
  • Stackoverflow is for programming questions. I think you either want Superuser or Serverfault.
    – Brian Driscoll
    Nov 12, 2010 at 19:11

2 Answers 2


This is a great question. Here's the problem: you copied over only one partition (a partition is like a virtual hard drive). Open the start menu. Right click on "My Computer" (or computer if you're on Vista or 7) and choose "Manage." Then, go to disk management, select the unpartitioned space, and partition it as NTFS. You'll have two separate virtual hard drives, but you'll have all the space on the disk. If you want only one hard drive to appear, you'll need to use a third party partition management utility like http://www.partition-tool.com/easeus-partition-manager .

  • +1 If he is using Windows7 he can just extend the partition using disk management. Nov 12, 2010 at 21:39
  • Thanks for the quick response, guys. The problem is, Windows 7's Disk Management utility actually says the entire partition is active and healthy, with a size of 596.17GB. Windows Explorer says that the disk's total capacity is only 298GB. Any other ideas?
    – Chris C.
    Nov 13, 2010 at 2:56
  • Also note that when I try to use the "Shrink Volume..." function to adjust the size of the partition by ANY amount, I get an error: "The parameter is incorrect."
    – Chris C.
    Nov 13, 2010 at 3:15

Depending on what software you used and how you used it why this happened, when using Acronis from a boot CD to restore an image, this will happen, it will only use the same space as the original image occupied, an easy way to overcome this is to "clone" the old drive to the new one while in Windows (booted from the original drive), this way you can specify the image to occupy all of the space on the new drive.

or merge the unused disk space back to C partition using partitioning software. or do as suggest by Nathan L.

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