Tech Journal Back to Tech Journal

Windows Disk Manager won't let me change the letter of my drive to a certain (available) letter!

After having replaced an 80GB drive with a 320GB by the simple expedient of Ghost'ing one to the other, and then swapping them, Windows agreed to mount the first parition in the 320GB as C: (just like it did in the 80GB), but refused to mount the second partition as F: not even displaying it in the drop-down list in the Disk Manager dialog of "Change Drive Letter and Path".

Well, I'm not stupid, I've seen this before - that a GUI tool lies to me, while a command-line tool does what I tell it to. I turned to mountvol. This is what I got:

C:\>mountvol f: /d
The system cannot find the file specified.

C:\>mountvol f: /l
The device is not ready.

Oh, joy! The GUI tool wasn't lying to me - Windows has gotten into its tiny brain to refuse to let me mount a drive because of another, non-existant drive!

So I went into the Registry, at HKLM\SYSTEM\MountedDevices, which lists all the mounted drives. After assigning the parition to drive D:, I renamed the registry value named \DosDevices\D: to be \DosDevices\F: and rebooted. Problem solved.

Last updated on 2007-07-16 10:09:22 -0800, by Shalom Craimer

Back to Tech Journal