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Drive Letters, will they be overwritten or reassigned?


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#1 2000YrsAgo

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Posted 29 November 2016 - 12:11 PM

Hey Everyone,

 

Good day to all of you!

 

I bought 2 new 3tb WD My Books that I will getting next week. First, the two that I have currently have a Drive letter of E and F. I am doing a wipe and a clean install of Windows 10 pro x64 once I get the new drives. After the wipe and clean install, I will be plugging one at a time the new HDD's. Once I start plugging in the hard drives I had previously what will happen? Does windows reassign them automatically the drive letters or will they override the new drives? Because I don't want them to override the new hard drives.

 

Thank you for your help and assistance!



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#2 Angoid

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Posted 29 November 2016 - 12:25 PM

Not sure I understand exactly what you're doing here ...

When you plug in an external drive (such as a WD MyBook) over USB3, Windows will typically assign the first drive letter available, usually E.

The second one will be given the drive letter F.

 

But this is determined at the time you connect them up - suppose you have two drives, let's call them alpha and beta.

You plug in alpha.  It will be given the first drive letter available - usually E (if D is your optical drive)

You then plug in beta.  It will be given the next letter - F in this case.

 

Another day, after you boot up your system you plug in beta.  it will be assigned drive letter E.

Then you plug in alpha.  It will be given drive letter F.

 

Not sure if this is what you're after, but that's what happens on my system anyway.

 

Edit: Unless your external drives are NAS devices, which get connected to your router instead of to your computer.  You can assign the drive letters manually in that case.


Edited by Angoid, 29 November 2016 - 12:28 PM.

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#3 2000YrsAgo

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Posted 29 November 2016 - 01:14 PM

Not sure I understand exactly what you're doing here ...

When you plug in an external drive (such as a WD MyBook) over USB3, Windows will typically assign the first drive letter available, usually E.

The second one will be given the drive letter F.

 

But this is determined at the time you connect them up - suppose you have two drives, let's call them alpha and beta.

You plug in alpha.  It will be given the first drive letter available - usually E (if D is your optical drive)

You then plug in beta.  It will be given the next letter - F in this case.

 

Another day, after you boot up your system you plug in beta.  it will be assigned drive letter E.

Then you plug in alpha.  It will be given drive letter F.

 

Not sure if this is what you're after, but that's what happens on my system anyway.

 

Edit: Unless your external drives are NAS devices, which get connected to your router instead of to your computer.  You can assign the drive letters manually in that case.

 

Thank you Angoid for your time and assistance. Hard Drives are not NAS. Basically, I have current HDD 1 at Drive Letter E and HDD 2 at Drive Letter F. I bought two new ones. Once I do a wipe and clean of my computer, the new ones will be assigned E and F. Once I plug-in the ones I had that originally previously had the drive letters as E and F before the clean install,will those override the new ones or will windows reassign them to lets say G and H? Or could it be the other way around. They become E and F and the new drives become G and H? I hope that helps.

 

Here is another, After a clean install does windows remember the drives letters or will they reassign them as you plug the hard drives?



#4 FreeBooter

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Posted 29 November 2016 - 01:20 PM

Hi 2000YrsAgo

 

You have ask this question on another forum which i have answer your question i will answer it here again.

 

You don't have to worry about Windows assigning new drive letters this will not affect any data store on drives you will be accessing the drives as normal. Even you can assign drive letter to any drive from Disk Management console.


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#5 Kilroy

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Posted 29 November 2016 - 01:47 PM

The should be assigned new available drive letters.  If you want to manually set their drive letters you can use DISKMGMT.MSC or right click the Windows button and select Disk Management.



#6 RolandJS

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Posted 29 November 2016 - 03:42 PM

I've done this for some years now.  Freebooter and others are correct, it matters not what ext HD gets what drive letter or whether you assign the drive letters from disk management -- as far as Data folders and files are concerned.  If you install programs on either one or both of these two ext HDs -- it will matter.  What I've done over the years:  Windows OS partition is C, my data partition is D, my internal CD-DVD reader/writer is I, my traveling 16GB stick is Y, my traveling 32GB stick is Z.  The usb sticks have to be respectively plugged into the same physical usb port of each computer.


Edited by RolandJS, 29 November 2016 - 03:43 PM.

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#7 2000YrsAgo

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 11:19 AM

You don't have to worry about Windows assigning new drive letters this will not affect any data store on drives you will be accessing the drives as normal. Even you can assign drive letter to any drive from Disk Management console.

 

 

The should be assigned new available drive letters.  If you want to manually set their drive letters you can use DISKMGMT.MSC or right click the Windows button and select Disk Management.

 

 

I've done this for some years now.  Freebooter and others are correct, it matters not what ext HD gets what drive letter or whether you assign the drive letters from disk management -- as far as Data folders and files are concerned.  If you install programs on either one or both of these two ext HDs -- it will matter.  What I've done over the years:  Windows OS partition is C, my data partition is D, my internal CD-DVD reader/writer is I, my traveling 16GB stick is Y, my traveling 32GB stick is Z.  The usb sticks have to be respectively plugged into the same physical usb port of each computer.

 

 

Thank you all for your responses. Helped. That is good to know that it won't affect the data once reassigned etc.

 

@Roland JS you mentioned about that if software are installed it will matter, what other examples can you give that will matter if I changed the drive letter? Also, what does happen when you change the drive letter and something is installed on the drive, lose it?

 

 

Also, I like to reiterate to make sure I am understanding. The bottom line is when I start afresh, by installing a clean install of Windows and then start to plug-in the hard drives one by one, Windows will assign the drive letter that is first available and go down the list of other drives I plug-in there after, but any previous drive letters that were assigned before the clean install will be forgotten? If not forgotten, Windows will just reassign to the next drive letter that is available. How am I doing so far? Am I understanding Correctly?

Thank you again!



#8 FreeBooter

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 11:28 AM

You are correct Windows will assign new drive letter that is available. When you clean install Windows, all data will be deleted this includes programs folders and registry settings even do you have install these programs on to different drive they will not work as newly install Windows wont have registry setting and data folders use by those programs on the different drive.  You will need to reinstall all the programs.


Edited by FreeBooter, 30 November 2016 - 11:29 AM.

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#9 2000YrsAgo

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 11:42 AM

You are correct Windows will assign new drive letter that is available. When you clean install Windows, all data will be deleted this includes programs folders and registry settings even do you have install these programs on to different drive they will not work as newly install Windows wont have registry setting and data folders use by those programs on the different drive.  You will need to reinstall all the programs.

Thank you again FB! When a HDD is assigned a drive letter, is it the HDD that remembers the letter or is it the OS?



#10 RolandJS

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 12:12 PM

 

...is it the HDD that remembers the letter or is it the OS?

The OS remembers  :)


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http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

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Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#11 2000YrsAgo

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 12:59 PM

 

...is it the HDD that remembers the letter or is it the OS?

The OS remembers   :)

 

 

 

...is it the HDD that remembers the letter or is it the OS?

The OS remembers   :)

 

Thank you RolandJS. I know that sounded stupid, but thought I would ask. :bubbles:



#12 FreeBooter

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 03:01 PM

Hi 2000YrsAgo,

 

You can ask any question you want that is why we are here no question is a stupid question so ask us about anything you want.


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#13 2000YrsAgo

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Posted 02 December 2016 - 11:04 AM

Hi 2000YrsAgo,

 

You can ask any question you want that is why we are here no question is a stupid question so ask us about anything you want.

Hey FreeBooter...Thank you very much for the kind words. Good to know.



#14 2000YrsAgo

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Posted 02 December 2016 - 11:06 AM

Hey Everyone,

 

One more twist to the plot, It might be redundant so sorry. Let's say I plug the brand new hard drives before I do a clean install. For example, I already have 4 external HDD's assigned drive letters E, F, G & H. The new ones I have will get drive letters I and J. That is 6 drives with letters.

 

Now, once I do a clean install and plug in the new drives first. From what was said here I am guessing that the newly installed Windows will start from the beginning and label the new hard drives drive letters E & F instead of I and J. Am I right on?

 

EDIT:

The External Drives will not be plugged in while clean installing. They will be plugged in after Windows is installed.


Edited by 2000YrsAgo, 02 December 2016 - 11:21 AM.


#15 RolandJS

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Posted 02 December 2016 - 11:16 AM

"...Let's say I plug the brand new hard drives before I do a clean install..."  If memory serves me, it is best to not have ext HDs plugged in during a clean install.  Let's see what others in BC have to say.


"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)





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