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Can't Find 2GB Of Used Space On USB External Drive


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#1 LouieChuckyMerry

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Posted 21 February 2011 - 11:17 PM

Hello, and thanks in advance to anyone willing to give of their time and knowledge. Running Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, I have two Western Digital 1TB My Passport USB external hard drives that I use for backing up my data, using SyncBack to keep their contents the same. Very recently I had need to reformat one of them, and after synchronizing their contents I did so. When the formatting was finished I then copied all of the data from the other drive back onto it. All seemingly went well. Being me, however, I compared the properties (files, folders, etc.) of the two drives and noticed that the recently reformatted and refilled drive had almost two more GB of used space than the other drive. Digging deeper, I compared the drives' properties folder-by-folder; all of the folders' contents are identical, down to the byte. Digging even deeper, I went to "Tools/Folder options.../View" and unchecked the "Hide protected operating system files" and ticked the option "Show hidden files, folders, and drives" and compared properties of all present files and folders (RECYCLE.BIN, etc.); the difference in size between the two drives' hidden and operating system files is negligible. Under my computer's Recycle Bin properties both drives are set to immediately delete deleted data; that is, neither drive has space dedicated to a recycle bin. Please, does anyone know where this 2 GB discrepancy between the external drives' used space exists? While far from a vital issue, the urge to scratch this brain itch is rather strong. Thanks again for any help.

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#2 ThunderZ

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Posted 21 February 2011 - 11:27 PM

Had you ever compared the two drives properties\size prior to formatting?

A discrepancy such as you describe is not unusual. I had 4 500 Gig drives. All actually showed less then 500. One as low as 475. with the others all differing but still less then the 500 labeled.

My newest 500 Gig WD weighs in at 500,106,280,960 bytes. 465GB

IMO. the difference you are seeing is not unusual and really amazingly small in comparison the the drive capacity.

#3 LouieChuckyMerry

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 09:49 AM

Thanks for your reply ThunderZ, but I think that my original post wasn't lucid enough so I'll try again. When I compare the two external drives' properties, folder by folder, they are identical down to the byte. When I un-hide hidden files, folders, and drives and un-hide protected operating system files then compare the two external drives' properties folder by folder they are, for all intents and purposes, identical down to the byte. And yet, one of the drives has 710,903,738,368 bytes used space and the other has 712,107,253,760 used space. To answer your question, I've never directly compared the two drives' properties-size prior to formatting, but in all the time I've owned them and kept them synchronized I've never seen this 1+ GB discrepancy in used space, and the end result of my syncing has always produced two drives with the same amount of "'x' GB free of 930 GB" according to the information available upon opening "My Computer." I think that I understand the gist of your reply, that "x" GB aren't necessarily "x" GB (due to the 1000 byte vs. 1024 byte issue), but I'm not sure how that effects used space since I've always thought that a byte was a byte.

#4 ThunderZ

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Posted 23 February 2011 - 11:36 AM

What I`m basically saying is that the beginning available space of the drive(s), brand new, never used, varied by 2GB.

One drive was actually 2GB smaller in capacity to start.

#5 LouieChuckyMerry

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Posted 23 February 2011 - 11:13 PM

ThunderZ: thanks for the simplified version of your original post; I guess my brain has issues beyond itching :whistle: Although the same model, the drives are a year apart in age and the newer one does have about 700 MB more usable space, but I couldn't figure out why there was a "missing" chunk on the older drive. Then it dawned on me, so I spent some time searching and, sure enough, the older drive has a different version of WD's SmartWare that's on a hidden partition with a Virtual CD, a partition that by all accounts I read is not only impossible to delete but also nearly impossible to see. Also, it seems that so many people complained to WD that they discontinued the hidden partition. I was, however, able to regain about 200 MB by reformatting the drive using the HP USB Disk Storage Format Tool, which is better than nothing. Anyway, one itch scratched, and many thanks for your kind help.

#6 ThunderZ

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Posted 23 February 2011 - 11:25 PM

It was you that found the answer for your particular situation. :thumbup2:

Will tuck it away for future use. Thank you for taking the time to post it.

While the tool I am about to suggest was not intended to find hidden partition as it`s primary purpose. It has on several occasions done just that for me when wiping and doing fresh installs.

DBAN

#7 LouieChuckyMerry

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Posted 23 February 2011 - 11:56 PM

Thanks for the link; I'll surely check it out.




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