1.5TB (ST31500341AS) or larger SATA hard drive only showing 1.1TB capacity in Windows Vista

1.5TB (ST31500341AS) or larger SATA hard drive only showing 1.1TB capacity in Windows Vista



A certain NVIDIA driver for Windows Vista has a support limit of 1.1 TB so larger drives display only that capacity. This article explains.

Recently, Seagate released the 1.5 TB Barracuda 7200.11 SATA model ST31500341AS.  Compatibility testing has revealed that a certain NVIDIA driver for Windows Vista has a support limit of 1.1 TB.  NVIDIA drivers for Windows XP work well with the 1.5 TB Barracuda drive.
Also see our article: Large SATA drives (above 1.1 TB) will not completely format

NVIDIA has released an updated driver for Windows Vista that supports the capacity.
Version 15.23 - XP32, XP64, Vista32, Vista64 - NO GPU Driver included
Version 15.24 - XP32 , XP64, Vista32, Vista64 - GPU Driver included (GPU has the integrated graphics.)

Version 15.23 - XP32 - NO GPU Driver included
Version 15.23 - XP64 - NO GPU Driver included
Version 15.23 -Vista32 - NO GPU Driver included
Version 15.23 -Vista64 - NO GPU Driver included

(GPU has the integrated graphics.)
Version 15.24 - XP32 - GPU Driver included
Version 15.24 - XP64 - GPU Driver included
Version 15.24 -Vista32 - GPU Driver included
Version 15.24 -Vista64 - GPU Driver included

Windows 7 drivers if applicable are available at www.nvidia.com

For a complete list of nForce systems, follow the NVIDIA links and select the "Products Supported" tab, or see the table at the bottom of this article.

Symptom:

  • When building a new Windows Vista system, you are unable to partition and format the full 1.5 TB capacity on NVIDIA chipsets.  During the format, Windows Vista hangs with the message that it cannot continue the drive format.  See Solution 1 or Solution 2 below.
  • When adding a second drive to an existing Windows Vista System, you are unable to partition and format the full 1.5TB capacity on NVIDIA chipsets.  See Solution 3 below.


Solutions:

  1. Limit capacity to 1 TB temporarily, then expand it later.

    1. During the Windows Vista operating system installation and setup, choose 1 TB for the partition size.  

    2. Finish the installation and get online.

    3. Download the new NVIDIA driver (when it becomes available).

    4. At a later time, backup your data.

    5. Then update the driver.  

    6. Use Windows Vista Disk Management to expand the partition up to 1.5 TB after the driver update. To do this, first right-click on Computer.  

    7. Select Manage.  

    8. Select Disk Management under Storage.

    9. Select your 1.0 TB drive letter to be expanded into the remaining Unallocated Space.  This will usually be Disk 0 if this is the boot drive.
      Right-click to select the "Extend Volume &" option.

      Image
       

    OR

     
  2. Use a newer NVIDIA Windows Vista driver during setup.

    1. Copy the new driver to a USB flash drive or other media.

    2. During installation of Windows Vista, select the new driver by pressing "Load Driver".

    3. The full capacity should be available for the partition and format using the new driver.

      (Click image to expand)
      Image
       

  3. Update your NVIDIA Windows Vista driver.  

    1. Download the new NVIDIA driver when it becomes available.

    2. While the procedure should be data safe, you should make sure you have a good backup of your important data.  
      To accomplish this, create a current System Restore Point (Start button > Accessories > System Tools > System Restore).

    3. Install the new driver according to the manufacturer's instructions.

    4. Assuming the new drive is already physically installed in your computer, you can use Windows Vista's Disk Management tool to partition and format the drive to full capacity.
      To do this, first right-click on Computer.  

    5. Select Manage.  

    6. Select Disk Management under Storage.

    7. Be sure to select the correct drive!

For more information about installing Windows Vista, see Answer ID# 200991: How to install a Serial ATA drive in Windows Vista

Determining your SATA controller chipset
The SATA controller chipset manages the SATA hard disk drives.  Chipsets are identified by their name and part numbers.  To determine your SATA chipset:

  1. Right-click on Computer.  

  2. Select Properties.  

  3. Select Device Manager.  

  4. Expand the IDE ATA/ATAPI Controllers branch.  

  5. The SATA or Serial ATA controller name should be listed.  
    For NVIDIA chipsets you will see the following:

    (Click to expand)
    Image

Additional technical details
The device driver has a 31-bit sector count maximum. 231 equals 2,147,483,648 sectors. At 512 bytes each that equals 1,099,511,627,776 bytes or 1.1 TB. Windows will display this capacity as either 1 TB or 1024 GB. The full capacity of the drive will be available after the driver update. The Seagate ST31500341AS 1.5 TB drive has 2,930,277,168 sectors. At 512 bytes each, that equals 1,500,301,910,016 bytes, or 1.5 TB. Windows will display this capacity as either 1.36 TiB (Tebibyte) or 1397.26 GiB (Gibibyte).

One gigabyte, or GB, equals one billion bytes when referring to hard drive capacity. This software uses information provided by the operating system to display capacity and volume size. The Windows file system uses a binary calculation for gibibyte, or GiB - (230, or 1,073,741,824 bytes), which causes the abbreviated size to appear smaller. The total number of bytes on a disc drive divided by the decimal calculation for gigabyte, or GB - (109, or 1,000,000,000 bytes) shows the expected abbreviated size. See this FAQ for more information.
 

List of nForce systems

15.23 (NO GPU Driver included) 15.24 (GPU Driver included)
nForce 790i Ultra SLI nForce 780a
nForce 790i SLI nForce 750a
nForce 780i SLI nForce 730a / GeForce 8200
nForce 750i SLI nForce 720a / GeForce 8100
nForce 680i SLI nForce 710a
nForce 680a SLI nForce 630i/GeForce 7150
nForce 680i LT SLI nForce 630i/GeForce 7150
nForce 650i SLI nForce 630i/GeForce 7100
nForce 650i Ultra nForce 630a/GeForce 7050 PV
nForce 590 SLI Intel nForce 630a/GeForce 7025
nForce 590 SLI AMD nForce 610i/GeForce 7050
nForce 570 SLI Intel nForce 430/GeForce 6150
nForce 570 SLI AMD nForce 430/GeForce 6150LE
nForce 570 Ultra AMD nForce 430/GeForce 6150SE
nForce 560 nForce 430/GeForce 6100
nForce 550 nForce 420/GeForce 6100
nForce 520 nForce 410/GeForce 6150LE
nForce4 SLI X16 Intel nForce 410/GeForce 6100
nForce4 SLI X16 AMD nForce 405/GeForce 6100
nForce4 SLI Intel nForce 400/GeForce 6100
nForce4 SLI AMD  
nForce4 SLI XE Intel  
nForce4 Ultra Intel  
nForce4 Ultra AMD  
nForce4 AMD  





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