At home, I use multiple external hard drives; however, I don’t always leave them on. I usually have just one of them running at a time. Today, when my turned on my main external hard drive, it was assigned the drive letter I by Windows, whereas it usually used F. This caused some problems – some of my shortcuts expect it to be the F drive.
When I look at my drives in Windows, here is what I see:
Looking at the drives, I don’t quite understand why Windows thought I would be a good idea. I’m guessing it remembers another drive that had F, and wants to reserve it. Why it didn’t do that before, is beyond me.
To correct the shortcuts, I had to change the drive letter of the drive – which would make the paths valid again. I only had to do this once before, so I thought I’d offer the steps here, in case someone else would find it useful. The change is made using the Disk Management tool that comes with Windows.
In Windows 7, either:
- Search for “Disk Management” in the Start menu, and select the “Create and format hard disk partitions” option.
- In a “Run Command” window, enter “diskmgmt.msc”.
You’ll be presented with the Disk Management screen:
Once there, simply right-click the disk you wish to change, and select “Change Drive Letter and Paths”.
You’ll be presented with the following dialog:
Select the drive letter, and press “Change”.
When the dialog opens, select the letter you want to use. In my case, I changed the “Assign the following drive letter:” field value from I to F.
After that, press OK. You’re get a warning saying:
Some programs that rely on drive letters might not run correctly. Do you want to continue?