Creating a Partition in Windows 7
To partition a hard disk in Windows 7, you must be logged in as an administrator. After you log in using an account with administrative privileges, begin by clicking on Start and right clicking on My Computer. Choose Manage from the menu that opens. You are now looking at the Computer Management window.
In the left hand pane in the Computer Management window, expand Storage and click on Disk Management. Windows 7 will automatically generate a visual representation of your drives and the partitions they contain for each drive in your computer. (Click images to enlarge.)
Right click on any unallocated region of one of your hard drives and chose New Simple Volume. This opens the New Simple Volume Wizard that walks you through the rest of the process. Click on Next.
Here you have to make your first decision. You must decide how large of a partition you want to create in the unallocated space. Simply type in the size of the partition you wish to create. Notice that the default size is the entire size of the unallocated space. Also, notice that you need to specify the size of the partition in Megabytes (MB). When finished, click on Next.
The second decision you need to make is the letter that will represent the new volume you are about to create. Windows 7 recommends the next available letter on your computer but you can choose any available letter to represent the partition’s space. Don’t worry too much about what letter you choose because Windows 7 allows you change the letters of drives to anything you want. When finished making your decision, click Next.
Windows 7 now ask whether you want to format your new volume. If you don’t want to format the volume now, click Do Not Format This Volume and click Next.
If you do want to format the volume now, click Next when asked. You can choose to format your new volume with the default settings or change them to suit your particular needs. The one major choice you have to make is which file format you want to use to format your new volume.
NTFS is the default file format for Windows 7 and is the most secure and stable choice for this operating system. However, some people have a need to format a volume using the FAT32 file format. FAT32 is an older file format that is less secure and generally less efficient then NTFS.
However, if you share this drive with another operating system or want to have maximum cross-platform compatibility, FAT32 is the better choice. If you will only be using this new volume with Windows 7, NTFS is the best choice.
When you finish making your decisions, complete the format wizard and click OK. Windows 7 will now format your new volume according to the choices you made.