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OS X - Operating System General OS operation information and support

Boot camp install gone wrong; 32 GB of disc space missing


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riverteeth

 
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Hi all,

I tried to run boot camp to install windows 7 64 bit last night, chose 32 GB for the partition space, and waited for the prompt to insert my windows installation disc. Then the screen went to black, and stayed there for almost an hour. I forced a shut down, suspecting that something had gone wrong. After searching for the problem, I found that some users have experienced the "infinite black" screen at a slightly later stage of the install, but didn't see any descriptions of it happening at the stage it happened with me.

After rebooting, I was surprised to find that although no windows partition was created, my boot drive appears to be missing 32 GB of free space anyway! Originally, I thought that maybe this space was partitioned but not formated, but it doesn't appear in disc manager. After using disc inventory x to check the sizes of my files on disc, I confirmed that all of my files, including system and library files cannot possibly add up to the total finder tells me I have on that disc, and the difference seems to be about 30 GB or so.

Is there anything I can do to recover this free space?

Thanks

"The past is not dead. In fact, it's not even past." -William Faulkner
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chscag

 
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Quote:
Is there anything I can do to recover this free space?
Yes, there is. First, make a backup of your entire hard disk contents preferably using software which clones and creates a bootable backup. SuperDuper or Carbon Copy Cloner are what I recommend.

After the backup: Boot your machine with your Snow Leopard DVD. Cancel out the installation process by choosing "Utilities", "Disk Utilities" from the top menu. Highlight your MacIntosh HD (will be the first listing). Now select the partition tab. Drag the partition separator line until it encompasses the entire drive and select apply. This will non-destuctively get your space back.

Escape and OK out of DU. Reboot and you should be back to normal.

Regards.
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riverteeth

 
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Originally Posted by chscag View Post
After the backup: Boot your machine with your Snow Leopard DVD. Cancel out the installation process by choosing "Utilities", "Disk Utilities" from the top menu. Highlight your MacIntosh HD (will be the first listing). Now select the partition tab. Drag the partition separator line until it encompasses the entire drive and select apply. This will non-destuctively get your space back.
OK, thanks! Can you tell me, what's the difference between doing this with the Snow Leopard install disc vs. with a program like iPartition. I ask because I got that program a while back. Before I posted this question, I tried booting with the iPartition disc, and found that the partitioning looked normal (i.e. one partition on my 500GB drive with about 460 GB of usable space), so I figured there was nothing I could do, and didn't change anything.

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chscag

 
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Should be no difference if iPartition is working correctly. Do you have the latest iPartition for Snow Leopard? (should be 3.2.0)

Anyway, try the method I suggested and see if it makes a difference. Post back and let us know.

Regards.
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riverteeth

 
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So I followed your instructions, and just like in iPartition, the partition tab in disc utility showed only the one partition, encompasing the entire drive (i.e. no space to drag into).

I decided to just see what would happen if I re-ran boot camp. This time, I ran into an error with an explanation: it said that files couldn't be moved around enough to make room for the new partition, and I should do a system restore from a time machine backup consolidate the used space on the drive (paraphrase). It's not critical that I use that machine today, so I went ahead and started that (after doing another TM backup first). Maybe this will fix both problems? Will post back when that's done. Thanks for the help!

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Originally Posted by riverteeth View Post
So I followed your instructions, and just like in iPartition, the partition tab in disc utility showed only the one partition, encompasing the entire drive (i.e. no space to drag into).

I decided to just see what would happen if I re-ran boot camp. This time, I ran into an error with an explanation: it said that files couldn't be moved around enough to make room for the new partition, and I should do a system restore from a time machine backup consolidate the used space on the drive (paraphrase). It's not critical that I use that machine today, so I went ahead and started that (after doing another TM backup first). Maybe this will fix both problems? Will post back when that's done. Thanks for the help!
If you have a spare drive that you can use with Super Duper to clone your existing drive back and forth to, then that's an oft-recommended solution. You could also defrag it. I recommend grabbing iDefrag in that case. It's from the same people who make iPartition and is the only defragger out now that can do a proper full optimization of your drive without a special boot disk.


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riverteeth

 
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The system restore from my last TM backup worked! It took nearly 6 hours, but I've got my 32 gigs back. A little hesitant to retry the boot camp install again tonight though... hopefully that was just a fluke. Probably worth a bit more searching for possible cuases though.

"The past is not dead. In fact, it's not even past." -William Faulkner
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chscag

 
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Glad to hear you resolved it. Thank goodness for backups. Anyway, it's strange the missing 32 GB never showed up as a partition. My guess is the Boot Camp process probably failed somewhere along the way and never created the partition but allocated the space for it. ???

Regards.
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