Dual Booting Win7 w/ 3rd Shared Partition Problems

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Feefemon, Aug 11, 2013.

  1. Feefemon macrumors newbie

    Aug 2, 2010

    I have a 15" MBP, Mid 2012 with 8gb of RAM and 750gb HD running 10.8.3.

    I'm trying to dual boot Windows 7, but I'm also trying to make a third partition formatted in FAT32 so that I can have access to certain files while I'm booted in either OS.

    So I partitioned my HD with with 100gb for the WINDOWS partition, 100gb for the SHARED partition, and I resized Macintosh HD to whatever was leftover.

    Then when I went to go install Windows, I could only pick the WINDOWS partition--it had called my FAT32 partition "unallocated disk space" and it was not considered a "primary" drive. Despite both drives being formatted with the same file system, Windows only recognized the first one as a viable installation location. So I formatted that partition, NTFS, and installed Windows.

    It worked fine, however I cannot see that last 100gb of SHARED in Windows.

    In Windows' version of Disk Utility, I was able to look at that free space but if I were to partition it, I see this warning message saying that I will not be able to boot to any other operating system on the drive if I format those 100gb into a "Dynamic Partition".

    Needless to say I don't want to lose Mac, and I also want to get this to work. If anyone has any information they could share about resolving this it'd be greatly appreciated. Also if you need more info from me, screenshots and whatnot, I'd be happy to oblige.

    And no, I don't want to download an NTFS driver for Mac or just use a virtual machine.


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  2. saytheenay macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2012
    Ran into this issue several years ago after I got my 2010 MBP, and with every OS upgrade since.

    Disk Utility can be used to make disk partitions, but since it uses EFI and not MBR, Windows only sees 4 primary partitions. Due to the way Mac OS handles the recovery partition, Windows sees 2 partitions for the recovery partition. When you have Mac OS, Windows, and the recovery partition, Windows sees that you already have 4 primary partitions and can't see your shared partition (from its perspective, a fifth primary partition). I may not be entirely accurate on the how here, but the result is the same--it can't see the shared partition.

    So how do you solve this? I fixed it by making a USB stick of the latest Mac OS, restarting it off the USB stick, going into Disk Utility, and deleting the recovery partition (I didn't need it since I have the USB stick). When I rebooted into Windows, it saw the shared partition. Google deleting Mac delete recovery partition for more detailed steps.

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