[conspire] Resizing NTFS

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Wed Oct 23 21:00:20 PDT 2002

Quoting Edmund J. Biow (biow at bigfoot.com):

> Reportedly the newly released the Debian-based Xandros distribution (nee 
> Corel) includes the option to non-destructively repartition NTFS with a 
> "disk druid like utility."  
> http://newsforge.com/newsforge/02/10/21/1749230.shtml?tid=23
> I have no idea what the license status of the utility is.

I'm about 99% sure it's integral to the proprietary, non-redistributable
installer program.

I've been collecting all this NTFS-coping stuff in one file, here:
http://linuxmafia.com/~rick/linux-info/ntfs  The file has gotten long
and confusing enough that I've now prepended a summary.  The idea is
that Linux folk can look up what's known about the issue, there, rather
than having to re-research it.  Summary follows:


Because Microsoft has begun using NTFS partitions for preloads, people
coming to the Linux community for help creating a dual-boot
Linux/Microsoft setup have a new challenge.  Traditional
"non-destructive" partitioners don't work:

   FIPS, GNU Parted, DiskDrake, Ranish Partition Manager, Partition
   Resizer, PartitionIt Extra Strength -- all are FAT-only (no NTFS).

Worsening this problem is omission of genuine reinstallation disks 
for MS-Windows & bundled apps from current OEM preloads:  The provided 
"recovery disks" wipe out your hard drive completely and reallocate the
entire drive to NTFS.

We've found three classes of solutions:

1.  NTFS-resizing software:

  Proprietary/retail-only, may not be lawfully redistributed:
  o  PowerQuest Corp.'s Partition Magic:  $80, retail / pay first
  o  Paragon Software's Partition Manager:  $40, retail / pay first
  o  Acronis OS Selector:  $45, trial version avail., but it's crippled.
  o  V-Communications's System Commander 7:  $70, retail / pay first
  o  Xandros Desktop OS's installer:  $100, retail / pay first

  Proprietary/redistributable (by individuals who don't charge):
  o  TeraByte Unlimited's BootIt Next Gen.: $29.95 "shareware", 30 day trial
     http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/downloads/ .  Also reportedly on
     Simtel sites.  Also on my machine, http://linuxmafia.com/pub/hardware/
     as bootit-ng-1.32a.zip .  Included is a diskette image.  You make the
     image, then boot it.  (Decline its offer to "install".)

  Proprietary / terms of redistribution unknown:
  o  ASPLinux distribution installer's ASPDiskManager utility: 
     downloadable CD image, http://www.asp-linux.com/

  Open source:
  o  The ntfs-progs utilities collection from Anton Altaparmakov's
     Linux NTFS Utilities effort, http://linux-ntfs.sourceforge.net/
     includes "ntfsresize", similar to FIPS.  ntfsresize may be dangerously 
     buggy.  Beware!  I compiled it for people's convenience: 

2.  Partition-imaging software with NTFS support (i.e., understands
    NTFS file semantics, and thus can reduce an image's size):

  o  Symantec/Norton Ghost:  proprietary/retail-only
  o  Partimage:  open-source.  http://www.partimage.org/  Included on
     these rescue disks:

  The idea is to back up the partition image to elsewhere (e.g. a 
  Linux server), blow away the original, and copy the partition back 
  _smaller_.  Both packages seem to require that you NOT have NTFS 
  compression enabled, and that you defragment the NTFS partition:

2 a).  NTFS Defragmenters:  
  o  Symantec/Norton Speedisk:  proprietary/retail-only
  o  Raxco Software, Inc.'s PerfectDisk NT:  proprietary/retail-only
  o  Paragon Software's Partition Manager:  proprietary/retail-only
  o  System Internals's PageDefrag:  proprietary/retail-only
  o  Defragmenters included in MS-Windows XP Professional only:
      o  Disk Defragmenter (snap-in)
      o  Defrag.exe (command-line)
  o  Executive Software's Diskeeper:  proprietary/retail-only
  o  Executive Software's Diskeeper Lite 7.0:  proprietary / gratis
     download, http://www1.execsoft.com/dklite.exe (11 MB) labelled "freeware".

3.  Advise the machine's owner to add a second hard drive and load 
    Linux there, to finesse the need to deal with NTFS resizing.

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