Resize Boot Camp Windows Partition

On my MacBook Air, I installed Windows 7 via Boot Camp in a 36GB partition which I have filled quickly.  I wanted to increase the partition size to 50GB if possible, but without having to completely wiping, repartitioning, and reinstalling Windows.  How do I do this?

Note: Before trying anything, be sure both partitions are fully backed up!

My first thought was via Disk Utility, in which it allowed me to shrink the OS X partition which creates a 3rd partition in order to increase the Windows partition, but Disk Utility would not allow me to increase the Windows partition.  So I booted into Windows and via Disk Management, tried to extend the Windows partition to the newly made empty partition, but it would not allow as well.

So I went online to see what others have done.  The vast majority used a Mac program called WinClone that clones Windows and then through wiping and repartitioning, to restore Windows on the new increased partition.  Winclone Actual success with this process looked 50-50 based upon what I read, and WinClone is no longer supported and does not work with OS X Lion.  A modified version of WinClone to work with Lion was available, but it did not look stable enough based upon comments by users.

My Next search looked for actual programs that could resize a Boot Camp partition and was led to an application called CampTune by Paragon Software.  It does cost $19.95, so the you have to weigh the “cost vs. effort” to determine if you want to purchase.  You also have to recognize that even this software may not work and you could end up reinstalling both OS X Lion and Windows 7 in new partitions if something goes wrong.

create-partition-for-windows

What this software does, is create a Start Up CD/DVD with a minimal copy of Windows and their Software utility which gives you some options to Install Windows, backup, restore, resize partitions and other tools.   I resized my Windows partition to 50GB, it went through the process in about 20 minutes.  I rebooted into OS X to be sure that partition was still working correctly.  I checked in Disk Utility and indeed the partition for OS X was now 68GB and the Windows partition was 52GB.

I then rebooted into Windows without issue.  Checked in Disk Management and it was now showing 49GB as the Windows partition.  Interesting how each OS gives me slightly different sizes.  I am satisfied and all is working as advertised.  Impressed at how easy it all worked using CampTune.  I do recommend.

Fun With Installing Windows 7

received my two boxes of Windows 7 Professional Upgrade on Thursday October 22, 2009 as Amazon promised they would.

My first install would be on my MacBook Pro.  I first tried upgrading from Win7RC 64-but to Win7 64-bit Uon my Macbook Pro in Bootcamp.  It would not work for me, as I kept getting an error stating it “could not create the installation folder”.  I had an additional 27GB in the partition, so this could not be due to a space issue.  I even tried another Win7 Upgrade disk in case there was an error on the DVD.  Same result.

So I went into OSX (Snow Leopard) and used the Bootcamp Utility to delete the Windows partition and re-create a new one and go through the clean install process. I was not sure I could use the upgrade DVD on a clean install, but went for it anyway.

I used the “Custom Option” process and formatted the partition and installed. After most of the install process, a couple of reboots, I finally got to the “Type your Windows product key” screen and it kept telling me the product key was invalid.  I tried it a dozen times, even changing a B to an 8 to see if that was the issue.  No luck.

Had to call Microsoft.  First Rep could not give me a case# so I had to call back and get another Rep. who validated that my Key is good, gave me a case number and transfered me to an install technician in India with a strong accent.  Could barely understand her.  Gave her my case number and we went through the same thing as the first rep (what is the case number for if not to tell the technician what the issue is and what has been done by the first rep?).  She activated the key on her end(?), told me to delete the key and move on with the installation without adding a key.  The install process continued & completed.  Inserted my OSX Snow Leopard CD and installed Bootcamp Drivers.  Rebooted, activated and all is well.

So in my case, you could install an upgrade version of Windows 7 on a clean partition without installing Vista first.



Why I am Leaving Symantec for Good

My story with Symantec’s Norton began a few months ago when I upgraded a number of my computers to Windows 7.  Symantec released a beta version for Windows 7, but they would only give you a trial version that lasted 1 – 2 weeks.  Did not understand a trial version of a beta that would only last a short time.  So I went elsewhere and ended up using the new Microsoft free security product on Windows 7.
This left me with only 1 computer needing Norton 360 which is a VM of Windows XP on my Macbook Pro.  I have recently updated from a Macbook to a Macbook Pro, but just copied the XP virtual machine over.
So here I am with a product that I can use on 3 computers but am using on only one, and which I have 60 days of subscription left.
So last night I boot up the XP VM and Norton tells me it needs to update, so I update, then it wants to reboot, so I reboot, and guess what?  The Norton is de-activated and shuts off my internet security.  I try to re-activate and it tells me I can not, that I have exceeded my usage of the Product Key.
So now I must deal with Norton support to get my internet security back working.  I did this via online chat and even when I told the rep what the issue was, he wanted to remote in to my computer to fix.  Why they need to remote into my computer when the Product Key is not working is beyond my understanding.
From what I can tell, they ultimately just reset the Key to work.  But to just let me get screwed a little, they only activated it for another 50 days.
When the 50 days are up, goodbye for good Norton, hello Microsoft.