Bare Metal : Computer Hardware Buyers’ Glossary

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Bare Metal

Terabyte Unlimited’s  $40.00 USD Terabyte Boot-It Bare Metal née BING (Boot-It Next Generation) (not to be confused with Bing the Microsoft Search engine), is both a tool for managing partitions, (creating, deleting, growing, shrinking and sliding) and a boot manager. The current version of Bare Metal is 1.25a  Last revised/verified: 2014-03-13. It is the one I chose to use myself after experimenting with many of them.

There are separate downloads for trial and production. I could not get downloads to work with Firefox, but I could get them to work after several tries with Google Chrome.

Bare Metal adds a number of features over Boot-It NG, the most important being:

Features still not available that I would like:

The current and presumably last version of Boot-It NG is 1.86b  Last revised: 2009-11-05 Verified: 2011-04-11

It lets you have more than 4 primary bootable partitions if you use Boot-It exclusively for boot and partition management. It will back up the MBR. Boot-It will modify the MBR for each OS so that it gets to see the MBR in its preferred order with a partitions hidden it is not supposed to touch. This lets you shift partitions around without having to manually edit all the boot.ini files. It will also see the MBR as if it were originally the primary boot partition. It can also create images of partitions for backup. It is not a full blown backup, but it gives you the basic operation needed.

The competition is Acronis, a much slicker product, but which failed on my Vista machine. The venerable Partition Magic has not been updated to handle Vista.

Pros Simple Strategy
Cons The Moving C: Problem
Tips Links

Pros

Boot-It’s main virtues include:

Cons

Boot-It’s main limitations include:

Tips

Simple Strategy

Here is a recipe for changing the sizes of all your partitions. These instructions presume you have only one OS installed. You will have to make minor adjustments if you have more than one. This algorithm works with the physical partition order. Your drive letters may or may not be in physical order.
  1. Defrag all your partitions to make them easy to shrink and compact to slide.
  2. If you want to shrink your C: partition, resize it down, and slide the extended partition toward the start of the disk just after the C: primary partition.
  3. If you want to grow your C: partition, slide the extended partition toward the end of the disk to make room. Resize your C: partition up.
  4. For each of your other partitions that you want to shrink, resize them down to the desired size.
  5. Grow your extended partition as large as possible.
  6. Slide the last partition in the extended partition to the end of the extended partition.
  7. Slide the second last partition in the extended partition to the end of the extended partition, just prior to the last partition.
  8. Slide the third last partition in the extended partition to the end of the extended partition, just prior to the second last partition.
  9. Don’t slide the first partition in the extended partition to the end. It should be at the start of the extended partition. If it is not, slide it to the start of the extended partition.
  10. If you want to grow the first partition in the extended partition, resize it up.
  11. Slide the second partition just after the first partition.
  12. If you want to grow the second partition in the extended partition, resize it up.
  13. Slide the third partition just after the second partition.
  14. If you want to grow the third partition in the extended partition, resize it up.
  15. Slide the last partition just after the second last partition.
  16. If you want to grow the last partition in the extended partition, resize it up.
  17. Optionally resize the extended partition to put the free space outside just after the extended partition.
  18. Run ChkDsk X: /F on all your partitions.
  19. Defrag all your partitions again.

The Moving C: Problem

It is good idea to avoid moving the start of the C: partition. If you do, you might need to do a some repair work to get your machine going again. It can be frightening, but it is not fatal.
  1. Boot from the Windows install CD.
  2. Use repair.
  3. Boot from the Boot-It/Bare Metal CD.
  4. Reinstall Boot-It/Bare Metal.
  5. Use Control Panel ⇒ System and Security ⇒ Administrative Tools ⇒ Computer Management ⇒ Storage ⇒ Disk Management ⇒ right click change drive letter and paths To put your drive letter mapping back the way they used to be.
  6. You might also be able to correct the problem more directly with Microsoft’s BCDEdit.

available on the web at:

http://mindprod.com/bgloss/baremetal.html
ClustrMaps is down

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of mindprod.com
on local hard disk J:

J:\mindprod\bgloss\baremetal.html
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