I described the MFT and MFT Reserved Zone in tip 0487.
In Windows NT 4.0, the size of the MFT Reserved Zone is fixed, once established. In Windows 2000, the MFT Reserved Zone is dynamically created every time the partition is mounted.
To manage the size of the MFT Reserved Zone, use Regedt32 to navigate to:
Edit or Add Value name NtfsMftZoneReservation, as a REG+_DWORD data type. The valid data value range is 1 - 4, where 1 sets the minimum and 4 sets the maximum.
After I set the NtfsMftZoneReservation to 1 and restarted my laptop, the size of the MFT Reserved Zone was dramatically reduced, but still sufficently large to handle any conceivable file object additions.