Converting a Hidden Partition to a Logical Drive


J

jaugustine

Hi,

I have a Dell laptop with Windows 7. The HDD (hard disk drive) has two
hidden partitions, one is less than 20 GB and it contains the "System Restore"
files. In the past, when you bought a new computer, you usually received a
"System Restore" CD/DVD rom disk(s). Note: I made a disk image copy of
the C: drive to an external HDD as backup. I do not need the "system restore"
partition.

I would like to "unhide" this hidden partition and make it a logical
drive so I can format it as a FAT32 drive and use a "Dos Box" to run Dos
programs. Note: I already did this (Dos Box) on a USB (FAT32) flash drive
plugged into this laptop.

Can you recommend a tool or procedure?

Thank You in advance, John
 
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P

Paul

Hi,

I have a Dell laptop with Windows 7. The HDD (hard disk drive) has two
hidden partitions, one is less than 20 GB and it contains the "System Restore"
files. In the past, when you bought a new computer, you usually received a
"System Restore" CD/DVD rom disk(s). Note: I made a disk image copy of
the C: drive to an external HDD as backup. I do not need the "system restore"
partition.

I would like to "unhide" this hidden partition and make it a logical
drive so I can format it as a FAT32 drive and use a "Dos Box" to run Dos
programs. Note: I already did this (Dos Box) on a USB (FAT32) flash drive
plugged into this laptop.

Can you recommend a tool or procedure?

Thank You in advance, John
Disk Management should show some sort of representation for
each (non-zero) partition entry. "Hidden" means other aspects
of the thing are not visible, such as no drive letter, that
sort of thing.

You can start with PTEDIT32, to look at the partition setup.

ftp://ftp.symantec.com/public/english_us_canada/tools/pq/utilities/PTEDIT32.zip

This shows an example of a Dell computer. The "DE" is a Dell-ism.
As is the "DB".

http://www.goodells.net/dellrestore/files/dell-tbl.gif

You won't find "DE" listed here. It might not be considered
to be a widely recognized usage.

http://www.win.tue.nl/~aeb/partitions/partition_types-1.html

The DE partition is actually 06 FAT16, according to this.

http://www.goodells.net/dellutility/

You can see the DB down at the end. And it is a FAT32.
If that's the one you want, then that's an excellent candidate
for making an Extended Partition, and placing a Logical inside it.
To make it visible, using PTEDIT32, you could try changing the
DB to 0B (FAT32).

http://www.goodells.net/dellrestore/files/md3-hpa.gif

My suggestion of changing DB to 0B, is based on seeing these
two entries in the win.tue.nl web page.

0b WIN95 OSR2 FAT32

Partitions up to 2047GB. See Partition Types

0c WIN95 OSR2 FAT32, LBA-mapped

Extended-INT13 equivalent of 0b.

The B on the end of DB, suggests it's the first of those two options.
Changing the DB to 0B, is purely so you can "have a look" on
the next reboot.

That picture, is from this article, which discusses Dell
computers with a Host Protected Area.

http://www.goodells.net/dellrestore/mediadirect.shtml

You could use TestDisk, to scan the disk and identify
the "common" partition type info, without the Dell-ism
for labeling.

This utility is also good for partition identification,
but there is no Windows port. I've run this from a Linux
LiveCD, but it means a trip to Synaptic Package Manager
once the OS is booted, then download it.

http://disktype.sourceforge.net/

At the bottom of the page, it says "Cygwin", but then
you might need a complete install of Cygwin for that.

*******

I expect you'll need a Partition Manager, if anything
needs to be moved around. There are some free ones,
like Easeus (haven't used it).

If all it takes is deleting the partition (as it could
be the right-most one), you might be able to redefine
the space as you desire from Disk Management alone.

Paul
 
P

philo 

Hi,

I have a Dell laptop with Windows 7. The HDD (hard disk drive) has two
hidden partitions, one is less than 20 GB and it contains the "System Restore"
files. In the past, when you bought a new computer, you usually received a
"System Restore" CD/DVD rom disk(s). Note: I made a disk image copy of
the C: drive to an external HDD as backup. I do not need the "system restore"
partition.

I would like to "unhide" this hidden partition and make it a logical
drive so I can format it as a FAT32 drive and use a "Dos Box" to run Dos
programs. Note: I already did this (Dos Box) on a USB (FAT32) flash drive
plugged into this laptop.

Can you recommend a tool or procedure?

Thank You in advance, John

I don't think that's necessary.

"Dos Box" is an emulator and you run you dos apps in a "Dos Box" window.

You do not need a fat 32 partition
 
D

Dave

I don't think that's necessary.

"Dos Box" is an emulator and you run you dos apps in a "Dos Box" window.

You do not need a fat 32 partition
Correct, however there are many utilities that will let you format that
recovery partition. Unfortunately, if that is all you do the machine will
no longer boot. On a Dell, that recovery partition is the boot partition
and no, you can't simply make the system partition the default boot
partition (well, you can, but it still won't boot). In order to remove
that partition, you need to move some boot files to the system drive. I
did that and the machine still didn't boot so I just forgot about it. With
today's huge hd's, there isn't much point to not keeping it. Even if as I
do, you keep up to date image backups, you might want some day to restore
to an 'as purchased' state like if you sell it. While we're on the
subject, that other small partition called Dell Utility is also worth
keeping. It is where the diagnostic tools are kept.
Note: you certainly can do as you want and make the system bootable, but
you will have to do some research.
 
J

J. P. Gilliver (John)

In message <r9jh09p0tl9a4cdh10vhmh9fc1t7egsvpe@4ax.com>,
Hi,

I have a Dell laptop with Windows 7. The HDD (hard disk drive) has two
hidden partitions, one is less than 20 GB and it contains the "System Restore"
files. In the past, when you bought a new computer, you usually received a
"System Restore" CD/DVD rom disk(s). Note: I made a disk image copy of
the C: drive to an external HDD as backup. I do not need the "system restore"
partition.
Are you sure - that, for example, you can restore from your "backup"?
[]
--
J. P. Gilliver. UMRA: 1960/<1985 MB++G()AL-IS-Ch++(p)Ar@T+H+Sh0!:`)DNAf

"I'd give my right arm to be ambidextrous"

I already am largely ambisinistral.
 
W

Wolf K

In message <r9jh09p0tl9a4cdh10vhmh9fc1t7egsvpe@4ax.com>,
Hi,

I have a Dell laptop with Windows 7. The HDD (hard disk drive)
has two
hidden partitions, one is less than 20 GB and it contains the "System
Restore"
files. In the past, when you bought a new computer, you usually
received a
"System Restore" CD/DVD rom disk(s). Note: I made a disk image copy of
the C: drive to an external HDD as backup. I do not need the "system
restore"
partition.
Are you sure - that, for example, you can restore from your "backup"?
[]
That depends on the imaging software he OP used. In any case the
following may be useful information.

The system restore partition is used to repair the OS, or if need be to
return the computer to factory-fresh condition. This is not the same as
a backup and restore of the C: drive, nor an image >> replace corrupted
partition operation.

OP should make repair DVDs or USB flash drive. AFAIK, he can do only one
or the other. The repair media can then be used like the system restore
partition.
 
J

Jim

In message <r9jh09p0tl9a4cdh10vhmh9fc1t7egsvpe@4ax.com>,
Hi,

I have a Dell laptop with Windows 7. The HDD (hard disk drive)
has two
hidden partitions, one is less than 20 GB and it contains the "System
Restore"
files. In the past, when you bought a new computer, you usually
received a
"System Restore" CD/DVD rom disk(s). Note: I made a disk image copy of
the C: drive to an external HDD as backup. I do not need the "system
restore"
partition.
Are you sure - that, for example, you can restore from your "backup"?
[]
That depends on the imaging software he OP used. In any case the
following may be useful information.

The system restore partition is used to repair the OS, or if need be to
return the computer to factory-fresh condition. This is not the same as
a backup and restore of the C: drive, nor an image >> replace corrupted
partition operation.

OP should make repair DVDs or USB flash drive. AFAIK, he can do only one
or the other. The repair media can then be used like the system restore
partition.
To the OP

1- When you have the system working well and have no problems then
make a backup of your C drive with Macrium Reflect, Acronis True Image
or whatever backup program works best for you. This is better than the
manufacturers backup because it is newer, requires a lot less updating
and isn't filled with the bloatware that comes with the original
system. I would also make a backup (or two) of the backup and put it
in a safe place. You should test that backup to make sure that you can
restore from it. This is important as the backup will be your only
means to restore your system once you delete the manufacturers backup
partition.

2- Use a program like EASEUS Partition Master to delete the hidden
partition, then resize the C partition to fill the unallocated space.

3- I always make my C partition about 70 gigs or so and partition the
rest of the drive to a D drive to store my data. Making a smaller
C drive makes it a lot easier to make backups in the future as your
system changes.

Note: One giant C drive with all your stuff on it makes no sense to
me. You can make a new D partition at anytime with EASEUS as it is not
destructive to data. Having said that, it wouldn't hurt to back up all
your data before you partition just in case something goes wrong.

Jim
 
J

Jim

In message <r9jh09p0tl9a4cdh10vhmh9fc1t7egsvpe@4ax.com>,
(e-mail address removed) writes:
Hi,

I have a Dell laptop with Windows 7. The HDD (hard disk drive)
has two
hidden partitions, one is less than 20 GB and it contains the "System
Restore"
files. In the past, when you bought a new computer, you usually
received a
"System Restore" CD/DVD rom disk(s). Note: I made a disk image copy of
the C: drive to an external HDD as backup. I do not need the "system
restore"
partition.

Are you sure - that, for example, you can restore from your "backup"?
[]
That depends on the imaging software he OP used. In any case the
following may be useful information.

The system restore partition is used to repair the OS, or if need be to
return the computer to factory-fresh condition. This is not the same as
a backup and restore of the C: drive, nor an image >> replace corrupted
partition operation.

OP should make repair DVDs or USB flash drive. AFAIK, he can do only one
or the other. The repair media can then be used like the system restore
partition.
To the OP

1- When you have the system working well and have no problems then
make a backup of your C drive with Macrium Reflect, Acronis True Image
or whatever backup program works best for you. This is better than the
manufacturers backup because it is newer, requires a lot less updating
and isn't filled with the bloatware that comes with the original
system. I would also make a backup (or two) of the backup and put it
in a safe place. You should test that backup to make sure that you can
restore from it. This is important as the backup will be your only
means to restore your system once you delete the manufacturers backup
partition.

2- Use a program like EASEUS Partition Master to delete the hidden
partition, then resize the C partition to fill the unallocated space.

3- I always make my C partition about 70 gigs or so and partition the
rest of the drive to a D drive to store my data. Making a smaller
C drive makes it a lot easier to make backups in the future as your
system changes.

Note: One giant C drive with all your stuff on it makes no sense to
me. You can make a new D partition at anytime with EASEUS as it is not
destructive to data. Having said that, it wouldn't hurt to back up all
your data before you partition just in case something goes wrong.

Jim
Sorry reading the header you want to just convert it to a logical
drive and use the 20gb partition?

use EASEUS Partition Master:

Right click on the 20gb partition and select delete
Right click the partition and select Create
Select logical drive
Apply the changes

Jim
 
W

...winston

John wrote in message Hi,
I have a Dell laptop with Windows 7. The HDD (hard disk drive) has
two
hidden partitions, one is less than 20 GB and it contains the "System
Restore"
files. In the past, when you bought a new computer, you usually received a
"System Restore" CD/DVD rom disk(s). Note: I made a disk image copy of
the C: drive to an external HDD as backup. I do not need the "system
restore"
partition.
I would like to "unhide" this hidden partition and make it a logical
drive so I can format it as a FAT32 drive and use a "Dos Box" to run Dos
programs. Note: I already did this (Dos Box) on a USB (FAT32) flash drive
plugged into this laptop.
Can you recommend a tool or procedure?
Thank You in advance, John
Before doing anything you might consider loading Windows Disk Management and
determining which drives are the System and Boot volumes. In Windows 7 a
partition is called a volume
- In Windows 7 the System Volume contains the boot manager files that pass
control to the Boot Volume which contains and loads the operating system

If the 20GB (partition) is the System Volume containing the boot manager
files also contains the OEM provided restore files then unhiding, deleting,
and formatting the 20 GB partition will render the system non-bootable.

i.e. Proceed with caution.

If unclear, save a picture of Windows Disk Management, upload it to file
sharing service (e.g. SkyDrive, Flickr, TinyPic, etc.) so that others can
view and provide you sound advice. You've already received quite a bit of
good advice in this forum though all may not be applicable for your specific
case.


....winston
msft mvp consumer apps
 
J

jaugustine

I don't think that's necessary.

"Dos Box" is an emulator and you run you dos apps in a "Dos Box" window.

You do not need a fat 32 partition
Hi Philo,

I failed to mention that a Dos program(s) that writes to the HDD will not
be able to if it is NTFS.

John
 
J

jaugustine

Before doing anything you might consider loading Windows Disk Management and
determining which drives are the System and Boot volumes. In Windows 7 a
partition is called a volume
- In Windows 7 the System Volume contains the boot manager files that pass
control to the Boot Volume which contains and loads the operating system

If the 20GB (partition) is the System Volume containing the boot manager
files also contains the OEM provided restore files then unhiding, deleting,
and formatting the 20 GB partition will render the system non-bootable.

i.e. Proceed with caution.

If unclear, save a picture of Windows Disk Management, upload it to file
sharing service (e.g. SkyDrive, Flickr, TinyPic, etc.) so that others can
view and provide you sound advice. You've already received quite a bit of
good advice in this forum though all may not be applicable for your specific
case.


...winston
msft mvp consumer apps
Hi,

I may purchase a 500G HDD and install that as a "test" HDD. Then I will
use the HDD images of the 3 partitions from an external HDD on this "test"
HDD. Note: I used Acronis True Image to create these partition images to
an external HDD.

John
 
P

Paul

Hi Philo,

I failed to mention that a Dos program(s) that writes to the HDD will not
be able to if it is NTFS.

John
It can. But don't ask... :)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NTFS

"A free for personal use read/write driver
for MS-DOS called "NTFS4DOS" also exists."

http://web.archive.org/web/20100619161828/http://www.free-av.com/en/tools/11/avira_ntfs4dos_personal.html

I think what that may be missing, is LFN support.
And any NTFS file system with "real" files in it,
is not going to stay at 8.3 file name length. So
when you "dir" using that stuff, and "dir C:" of
your NTFS C:, all the file names are mangled
(coerced) into 8.3 format. It makes it virtually
impossible to CD your way down the file tree !
Because you can't really tell what anything is.

There was some other LFN package, but when I tried
that (as an add-on), nothing changed. It was like
it wasn't there.

Altogether a bizarre experience, but I suppose
if "you're an avid hiker, you eventually have to
try Everest" :) Um, good luck.

Paul
 
P

philo 

Hi Philo,

I failed to mention that a Dos program(s) that writes to the HDD will not
be able to if it is NTFS.

John


Then what I would do, rather than take the chance of possibly breaking
something is simply to shrink your main drive a bit and create a fat
partition
 
D

Dave

On 2013-08-12 5:34 PM, J. P. Gilliver (John) wrote:
In message <r9jh09p0tl9a4cdh10vhmh9fc1t7egsvpe@4ax.com>,
(e-mail address removed) writes:
Hi,

I have a Dell laptop with Windows 7. The HDD (hard disk drive)
has two hidden partitions, one is less than 20 GB and it contains
the "System Restore"
files. In the past, when you bought a new computer, you usually
received a "System Restore" CD/DVD rom disk(s). Note: I made a
disk image copy of the C: drive to an external HDD as backup. I do
not need the "system restore"
partition.

Are you sure - that, for example, you can restore from your "backup"?
[]

That depends on the imaging software he OP used. In any case the
following may be useful information.

The system restore partition is used to repair the OS, or if need be to
return the computer to factory-fresh condition. This is not the same as
a backup and restore of the C: drive, nor an image >> replace corrupted
partition operation.

OP should make repair DVDs or USB flash drive. AFAIK, he can do only
one or the other. The repair media can then be used like the system
restore partition.
To the OP

1- When you have the system working well and have no problems then make
a backup of your C drive with Macrium Reflect, Acronis True Image or
whatever backup program works best for you. This is better than the
manufacturers backup because it is newer, requires a lot less updating
and isn't filled with the bloatware that comes with the original system.
I would also make a backup (or two) of the backup and put it in a safe
place. You should test that backup to make sure that you can restore
from it. This is important as the backup will be your only means to
restore your system once you delete the manufacturers backup partition.

2- Use a program like EASEUS Partition Master to delete the hidden
partition, then resize the C partition to fill the unallocated space.

3- I always make my C partition about 70 gigs or so and partition the
rest of the drive to a D drive to store my data. Making a smaller C
drive makes it a lot easier to make backups in the future as your system
changes.

Note: One giant C drive with all your stuff on it makes no sense to me.
You can make a new D partition at anytime with EASEUS as it is not
destructive to data. Having said that, it wouldn't hurt to back up all
your data before you partition just in case something goes wrong.

Jim
Sorry reading the header you want to just convert it to a logical drive
and use the 20gb partition?

use EASEUS Partition Master:

Right click on the 20gb partition and select delete Right click the
partition and select Create Select logical drive Apply the changes

Jim
Jim, please read my post. The recovery partition is the boot partition and
you need to copy over some boot files from it to the system drive (which
will need to be marked as the default boot partition).
But this whole post is questionable, I run dosbox in order that my wife
can run an old bridge program written for msdos. This program used to run
in winxp but not on windows 7.
The bridge program is in an ntfs partition. I've no experience running
programs in dosbox that would require actual writing to the hd.
Macrium image backup will copy and save all those Dell partitions in a
single file so recovery is assured even if the hd is replaced.
 
W

Wildman

Hi Philo,

I failed to mention that a Dos program(s) that writes to the HDD will not
be able to if it is NTFS.

John
I don't think the native file system matters as long
as DosBox understands it. I use DosBox on a Linux
system with an EXT4 file system and the dos programs
don't have any problems but, they do not access the
file system directly. DosBox does it.

As Paul mentioned, LFNs are a different subject.
 
W

...winston

"Dave" wrote in message
Jim
Jim, please read my post. The recovery partition is the boot partition and
you need to copy over some boot files from it to the system drive (which
will need to be marked as the default boot partition).
+1 (Kind of)

In Win7 (if one has both a System and Boot Volume/partition)
- the System Volume (partition) contains the boot manager files
- the Boot Volume (partition) contains the o/s files

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/what-are-system-partitions-and-boot-partitions
<qp>
System partitions and boot partitions are names for partitions (or volumes)
on a hard disk that Windows uses when starting. These terms can be confusing
because the system partition actually contains the files used to boot
Windows 7, while the boot partition contains the system files. Understanding
these concepts is important....
</qp>

Terminology has been in practice since Vista
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314470


-- --
....winston
msft mvp consumer apps
 
F

fake

On 2013-08-12 5:34 PM, J. P. Gilliver (John) wrote:
In message <r9jh09p0tl9a4cdh10vhmh9fc1t7egsvpe@4ax.com>,
(e-mail address removed) writes:
Hi,

I have a Dell laptop with Windows 7. The HDD (hard disk drive)
has two hidden partitions, one is less than 20 GB and it contains
the "System Restore"
files. In the past, when you bought a new computer, you usually
received a "System Restore" CD/DVD rom disk(s). Note: I made a
disk image copy of the C: drive to an external HDD as backup. I do
not need the "system restore"
partition.

Are you sure - that, for example, you can restore from your "backup"?
[]

That depends on the imaging software he OP used. In any case the
following may be useful information.

The system restore partition is used to repair the OS, or if need be to
return the computer to factory-fresh condition. This is not the same as
a backup and restore of the C: drive, nor an image >> replace corrupted
partition operation.

OP should make repair DVDs or USB flash drive. AFAIK, he can do only
one or the other. The repair media can then be used like the system
restore partition.

To the OP

1- When you have the system working well and have no problems then make
a backup of your C drive with Macrium Reflect, Acronis True Image or
whatever backup program works best for you. This is better than the
manufacturers backup because it is newer, requires a lot less updating
and isn't filled with the bloatware that comes with the original system.
I would also make a backup (or two) of the backup and put it in a safe
place. You should test that backup to make sure that you can restore
from it. This is important as the backup will be your only means to
restore your system once you delete the manufacturers backup partition.

2- Use a program like EASEUS Partition Master to delete the hidden
partition, then resize the C partition to fill the unallocated space.

3- I always make my C partition about 70 gigs or so and partition the
rest of the drive to a D drive to store my data. Making a smaller C
drive makes it a lot easier to make backups in the future as your system
changes.

Note: One giant C drive with all your stuff on it makes no sense to me.
You can make a new D partition at anytime with EASEUS as it is not
destructive to data. Having said that, it wouldn't hurt to back up all
your data before you partition just in case something goes wrong.

Jim
Sorry reading the header you want to just convert it to a logical drive
and use the 20gb partition?

use EASEUS Partition Master:

Right click on the 20gb partition and select delete Right click the
partition and select Create Select logical drive Apply the changes

Jim
Jim, please read my post. The recovery partition is the boot partition and
you need to copy over some boot files from it to the system drive (which
will need to be marked as the default boot partition).
But this whole post is questionable, I run dosbox in order that my wife
can run an old bridge program written for msdos. This program used to run
in winxp but not on windows 7.
The bridge program is in an ntfs partition. I've no experience running
programs in dosbox that would require actual writing to the hd.
Macrium image backup will copy and save all those Dell partitions in a
single file so recovery is assured even if the hd is replaced.

A couple of years ago I deleted the recovery partition from my Dell
laptop. I then expanded the C Drive to include this space and
installed a clean Win 7. I hit a problem of being unable to boot into
my clean Windows 7 after this as I hadn't realised the boot files were
separate. The fix is easy, just use a W7 disc and do a startup repair
and that rewrites the boot files onto the OS partition correctly.
Worked for me.
 
R

R. C. White

Hi, Dave.
Jim, please read my post. The recovery partition is the boot partition and
you need to copy over some boot files from it to the system drive (which
will need to be marked as the default boot partition).
Dave, I think you need to read Winston's reply to your post - and STUDY the
link that he gave. Here it is again:
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/what-are-system-partitions-and-boot-partitions

The language used by Microsoft (and others) is so convoluted and
counter-intuitive that it's very hard to keep it straight. We use the terms
"boot" and "system" and "drive" and "partition" and "volume"...etc. so
promiscuously that it's a wonder that any of us manage to understand each
other. :>( Ed Bott's ironic comment from about WinXP days helped me to get
the two most critical terms straight in my own head:
"Those unfamiliar with such matters might think it strange that we BOOT from
the SYSTEM partition and keep the operating SYSTEM files in the BOOT
volume."

But that's the way it has been since before Windows - and perhaps even
before MS-DOS.

But Win7 introduced ANOTHER bit of needless confusion: the \Boot folder!
:>( As Winston's link says, "The system partition contains ... files and
the Boot folder that tell a computer where to look to start Windows." Note
that this "Boot folder" is a small folder in the Root of the System
Partition that simply POINTS TO the Boot Volume; It is NOT C:\Windows, which
has always been called the Boot Folder. :>(

Disk Management (first appeared in Windows 2000) helped clarify it further
for me. Its Graphical View helps me to see the distinction between a
physical DISK (often called a "drive") and a logical PARTITION (which we
also call a "drive", as in "Drive C:", or a "volume"). Disk Management
clearly shows which partition has the "System" status and which has "Boot" -
and which partition is (currently) the "Active" partition. ( These change
when we multi-boot into another Windows.)

So, your statement that "The recovery partition is the boot partition..." is
wrong. The Boot Volume (aka the Boot Partition) is usually (but NOT always)
Drive C:; it is the volume that holds the \Windows tree, with its entire
sub-tree of thousands of folders and gigabytes of files. When the computer
powers up, the BIOS directs attention to the Active Partition, which is also
the System Partition, which points the way to the Boot Volume and the
C:\Windows\system32 folder, where it finds the Winload.exe file, which gets
Windows started. The computer is already started by this point, thanks to
instructions in the BIOS and the System Partition, and Winload in the Boot
Volume then starts Windows. Thus it has ever been, at least since WinXP and
still in Win8.

To understand the Windows startup process, you must discard the mindset that
Windows resides in the System Partition. And that the Boot Partition holds
the files that "pull the System up by its own bootstraps". Once you get
past that confusion, it will all fall into place. ;<)

RC
--
R. C. White, CPA
San Marcos, TX
(e-mail address removed)
Microsoft Windows MVP (2002-2010)
Windows Live Mail 2012 (Build 16.4.3508.0205) in Win8 Pro


"Dave" wrote in message
On 2013-08-12 5:34 PM, J. P. Gilliver (John) wrote:
In message <r9jh09p0tl9a4cdh10vhmh9fc1t7egsvpe@4ax.com>,
(e-mail address removed) writes:
Hi,

I have a Dell laptop with Windows 7. The HDD (hard disk drive)
has two hidden partitions, one is less than 20 GB and it contains
the "System Restore"
files. In the past, when you bought a new computer, you usually
received a "System Restore" CD/DVD rom disk(s). Note: I made a
disk image copy of the C: drive to an external HDD as backup. I do
not need the "system restore"
partition.

Are you sure - that, for example, you can restore from your "backup"?
[]

That depends on the imaging software he OP used. In any case the
following may be useful information.

The system restore partition is used to repair the OS, or if need be to
return the computer to factory-fresh condition. This is not the same as
a backup and restore of the C: drive, nor an image >> replace corrupted
partition operation.

OP should make repair DVDs or USB flash drive. AFAIK, he can do only
one or the other. The repair media can then be used like the system
restore partition.
To the OP

1- When you have the system working well and have no problems then make
a backup of your C drive with Macrium Reflect, Acronis True Image or
whatever backup program works best for you. This is better than the
manufacturers backup because it is newer, requires a lot less updating
and isn't filled with the bloatware that comes with the original system.
I would also make a backup (or two) of the backup and put it in a safe
place. You should test that backup to make sure that you can restore
from it. This is important as the backup will be your only means to
restore your system once you delete the manufacturers backup partition.

2- Use a program like EASEUS Partition Master to delete the hidden
partition, then resize the C partition to fill the unallocated space.

3- I always make my C partition about 70 gigs or so and partition the
rest of the drive to a D drive to store my data. Making a smaller C
drive makes it a lot easier to make backups in the future as your system
changes.

Note: One giant C drive with all your stuff on it makes no sense to me.
You can make a new D partition at anytime with EASEUS as it is not
destructive to data. Having said that, it wouldn't hurt to back up all
your data before you partition just in case something goes wrong.

Jim
Sorry reading the header you want to just convert it to a logical drive
and use the 20gb partition?

use EASEUS Partition Master:

Right click on the 20gb partition and select delete Right click the
partition and select Create Select logical drive Apply the changes

Jim
Jim, please read my post. The recovery partition is the boot partition and
you need to copy over some boot files from it to the system drive (which
will need to be marked as the default boot partition).
But this whole post is questionable, I run dosbox in order that my wife
can run an old bridge program written for msdos. This program used to run
in winxp but not on windows 7.
The bridge program is in an ntfs partition. I've no experience running
programs in dosbox that would require actual writing to the hd.
Macrium image backup will copy and save all those Dell partitions in a
single file so recovery is assured even if the hd is replaced.
 
S

Steve Hayes

Hi Philo,

I failed to mention that a Dos program(s) that writes to the HDD will not
be able to if it is NTFS.
I use DOS programs every day, and all my hard drives are NTFS.

They do have problems in printing, though, so I have to send printed output to
a disk file and print it with Wordpad or some other Windows program.
 
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D

Dave

Why not dump that old bridge program written for msdos and get a new
bridge program that works with Windows 7?
It took me a number of years to get her to dump WordPerfect 5.1 for DOS
and use MSWorks. I did download a couple of windows bridge programs but
she complained about using a mouse. On some things I just give up.
By the way, she now just loves MSWorks. I don't think it's being supplied
with later windows. Dell included it on media when I got my 2010 laptop.
 

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