Removing Windows 8


P

Paul

Ed said:
Thanks for that, Paul. I was growing more confident in it. I found
another alternative using TestDisk again;
http://tinyurl.com/2z5l8t
but I'll try the Aomei tomorrow when I have time.

Ed
I might have tried that myself, without consulting a web article, because
all the partitions are on the one disk and not spanned.

But, no matter what you're doing with TestDisk, the biggest liability,
is that the size computed isn't right. I don't know if TestDisk has
any "divisible by 63" preferences, like some Partition Managers I know,
and any time you're doing anything like this, either the size can be
modified slightly, the starting offset, or the spacing between partitions.
Sometimes, even the order of the partitions in the new partition table
are wrong (which causes boot.ini to need an ARC path correction, or
whatever the equivalent of that would be in the BCD of a Win7/Win8 install).

Reversal of partition order, can be causes by the previous use of a Partition
Manager. As long as you know how to hand edit a boot.ini, you can fix that.
Partition Magic did that to me once, when transferring partitions from one
disk to another, and it required using another tool later, to have the
partitions reversed again, preventing Windows from booting.

So, yes, I like TestDisk for these kinds of experiments, but even in the
simplest of situations (rebuilding a Basic disk), it can make spaghetti out
of the disk drive. As long as the users "knows what the answer is" and has
a fair idea of what sensible numbers would be for the partitions, then "go for it".

I've probably already told my story about the "deleted partition". I had
a disk with four partitions, deleted one, and later, needed to use TestDisk.
TestDisk found all four partitions, but the end of the third partition,
overlapped the fourth partition. (And that's because, the fourth partition
really should not have been there - it was nominally "deleted".) What
I've learned about this, is in future, if I delete a partition,
I'm going to write zeros over the space with "dd", so TestDisk can't find it :)
And then when it scans, it'll only find three.

Paul
 
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E

Ed Cryer

That's what I indicated but couldn't be sure since the snapshot of
diskmgmt.msc didn't show what would appear is the OP right-clicked on
the "Acer" partition (to see if "Mark as Active" were available).


With Windows 8 being a non-released version, and without personal
experience in putzing around with its boot manager and BCD (and seeing
what, if anything, happens to the BCD on the prior OS partition), it's
possible the Win8 install modified the BCD over in the Win7 partition.
I don't see why Microsoft would do that as the BIOS would load the
"active" partition which was the Win8 partition and load the boot
manager over there which wouldn't care what was in the Win7 partition.

This level of manipulating the partition tables and attributes for them
really screams the need for saving a disk image (or partition images
along with including the MBR) and making sure to create a bootable
rescue CD for the imaging program.

From Ed's next post in this subthread, it looks like dynamic (spanning)
is employed. One of the volumes is actually composed of 2, or more,
disks or partitions. I've never bothered with OS-driven dynamic volumes
and instead went to RAID (0 for spanning to add capacity or 5 for adding
capacity along with redundancy/recovery). Ed was thinking was doing the
conversion from dynamic to basic but that will destroy the contents of
every partition that was involved in creating the dynamic volume.

Unless someone comes along with more experience with dynamic volumes, at
this point it looks like Ed needs to save images of every partition (on
ALL disks since dynamic volumes can span across hard disks) and wipe,
flatten and rebuild anew. In fact, at this point, I think Ed should be
saving partition image backups as a safety net for following any advice
here that he'll regret (we're not perfect).
I've done just that, man, and now I'm going to try conversion.

Ed
 
E

Ed Cryer

I might have tried that myself, without consulting a web article, because
all the partitions are on the one disk and not spanned.

But, no matter what you're doing with TestDisk, the biggest liability,
is that the size computed isn't right. I don't know if TestDisk has
any "divisible by 63" preferences, like some Partition Managers I know,
and any time you're doing anything like this, either the size can be
modified slightly, the starting offset, or the spacing between partitions.
Sometimes, even the order of the partitions in the new partition table
are wrong (which causes boot.ini to need an ARC path correction, or
whatever the equivalent of that would be in the BCD of a Win7/Win8
install).

Reversal of partition order, can be causes by the previous use of a
Partition
Manager. As long as you know how to hand edit a boot.ini, you can fix that.
Partition Magic did that to me once, when transferring partitions from one
disk to another, and it required using another tool later, to have the
partitions reversed again, preventing Windows from booting.

So, yes, I like TestDisk for these kinds of experiments, but even in the
simplest of situations (rebuilding a Basic disk), it can make spaghetti out
of the disk drive. As long as the users "knows what the answer is" and has
a fair idea of what sensible numbers would be for the partitions, then
"go for it".

I've probably already told my story about the "deleted partition". I had
a disk with four partitions, deleted one, and later, needed to use
TestDisk.
TestDisk found all four partitions, but the end of the third partition,
overlapped the fourth partition. (And that's because, the fourth partition
really should not have been there - it was nominally "deleted".) What
I've learned about this, is in future, if I delete a partition,
I'm going to write zeros over the space with "dd", so TestDisk can't
find it :)
And then when it scans, it'll only find three.

Paul
http://tinyurl.com/6y8nr4z
Well, you've gotta laugh, man. In fact I had a good belly-laugh at that.

I'm going to try TestDisk on just one partition; my SpareSpace one in
which I've put one little Notepad file called "The only thing here".

Here's the Aomei FAQ for what it's worth. It's beyond me. I don't feel
up to contacting them either as they advise in their error message. I
don't speak their lingo.

Ed

--------------------------------------------------
FAQ

1. In what situations can dynamic disk be converted to basic
with Aomei Dynamic Disk
Manager?
1)Situations in which you CAN convert dynamic disk to basic:
l The dynamic disk consists of only simple volumes, and moreover, the
number of each simple
volume slice is one.
l The dynamic disk consists of only mirrored volumes, and
moreover, the number of each
mirrored volume slice is one.
l The dynamic disk consists of both simple volumes and mirrored
volumes, and moreover, the
number of each simple volume slice or mirrored volume slice is one.

2)Situations in which you CANNOT convert dynamic disk to basic:
l There are spanned volumes, striped volumes or RAID5 volumes on
dynamic disks.
l The number of simple volume slice on a single dynamic
disk is more than one, namely
discontiguous simple volume.
l The number of mirrored volume slice on a single dynamic disk
is more than one, namely
discontiguous mirrored volume.

3)Advice:
l For spanned volumes and discontiguous simple volumes, please use
"Resize/Move Volume"
to shrink volume or change volume location so that turn them into
contiguous simple volume
(single volume slice).
l For mirrored volume, please use "Shrink Volume" to decrease its
capacity so that it becomes
contiguous mirrored volume. Besides, we suggest you
break mirrored volume before
converting.
l For striped and RAID5 volume, please use "Remove Drive
from RAID" to remove the
dynamic disk you want to convert from the RAID array.
l For striped, mirrored and RAID5 volume, you can also use "Move
Volume Slice Wizard" to
migrate all the volume slices

www.dynamic-disk.com
31
(e-mail address removed)

----------------------- Page 32-----------------------

Aomei Dynamic Disk Manager User Manual

2. Can I convert partitioned GPT disk to MBR with Aomei Dynamic Disk
Manager?
Aomei Dynamic Disk Manager can convert GPT disk which has 4
partitions at most to MBR
without losing data. If the number of partitions on GPT disk is more
than 4, the conversion from
GPT disk to MBR is unavailable. Because disk based on MBR can only
create up to 4 primary
partitions.

3. After converting a dynamic disk contained mirrored volume to basic,
why Windows Disk
Management snap-in shows a "Missing Disk"?
Because the mirrored volume consists of two dynamic disks, if you only
convert one of them to
basic, the "Missing Disk" will appear; however, "Missing Disk" will
disappear naturally when you
simultaneously convert two dynamic disks to basic. We suggest you break
mirrored volume before
converting.

4. How to extend RAID0 (Striped), RAID1 (Mirrored)
and RAID5 volume with Aomei
Dynamic Disk Manager?
l For RAID1 (Mirrored) volume that consists of only two dynamic
disks, it is easy and safe to
extend RAID1 (Mirrored) volume with "Resize/Move Volume" if the
two dynamic disks are
equal in size; if not, such as 100GB disk1 and 300GB
disk2, in such case, you can only
extend RAID1 (Mirrored) volume to maximum 100GB.
Then, in order to extend up to
300GB, you need to add another 300GB disk
(hereinafter "disk3") to your system and
convert disk3 to dynamic disk. After that, please use "Move
Volume Slice Wizard" to transfer
all mirrored volume slices on disk1 to disk3 and then extend
RAID1 (Mirrored) volume to
300GB with "Resize/Move Volume". Besides, this method also
applies to RAID0 (Striped)
and RAID5 volume.

l For RAID0 (Striped) and RAID5 volume, it is easy and safe to
extend RAID0 (Striped) or
RAID5 volume with "Resize/Move Volume" if there is enough
unallocated space on each
disk where the RAID0 (Striped) or RAID5 volume locate; if not,
you have to add another
large enough disk to your system and convert it to dynamic disk.
After that, please use "Add
Drive to RAID" to extend RAID0 (Striped) or RAID5 volume. For
example, the current size
of RAID5 volume which consists of 3 X 100GB disks is 200GB, you
can use "Add Drive to
RAID" to extend RAID5 volume to 300GB by adding a new 100GB disk
to RAID5 array.

5. Why need "Move Slice" function?
Every dynamic volume consists of many volume slices, for example,
spanned volume has two
volume slices at least and RAID5 volume needs three volume slices
at least. However, system
volume is so special that it consists of only simple volume which has
just one single volume slice.
In order to extend system volume, there must be some contiguous
unallocated space before or
behind C drive; if not, you can use "Move Slice" or "Move Volume
Slice Wizard" to transfer
volume slices located before or behind C drive to other places
or disks so that there will be
contiguous unallocated space to extend system volume.

6. After committing pending operations and restarting
computer, why the drive letter

www.dynamic-disk.com
32
(e-mail address removed)

----------------------- Page 33-----------------------

Aomei Dynamic Disk Manager User Manual

disappeared?
If the drive letter disappeared, please restart computer once
again to make drive letter visible.
Besides, you can use "Change Letter" to reassign a drive letter to the
volume.

www.dynamic-disk.com
33
(e-mail address removed)

-----------------------------------------------------------------
 
P

Paul

Ed said:
http://tinyurl.com/6y8nr4z
Well, you've gotta laugh, man. In fact I had a good belly-laugh at that.

I'm going to try TestDisk on just one partition; my SpareSpace one in
which I've put one little Notepad file called "The only thing here".

Here's the Aomei FAQ for what it's worth. It's beyond me. I don't feel
up to contacting them either as they advise in their error message. I
don't speak their lingo.

Ed
If you removed the F:Spare Space, is there any chance the Aomei would run ?
That would bring you back to four partitions.

Also, the partition numbers are probably supposed to be 27,07,07,07 after
conversion, as that would be what they use on my laptop (27 for the
recovery partition, the PQService thing). The 27 may be an attempt
to keep it hidden. I don't think that normally mounts, on my laptop.
I don't even know what's in PQService.

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

And as error messages go, I'd give that one high marks. Even if
the English is a little tortured, they went to a bit more
effort than your average software developer.

And their FAQ does hint at the level of evil hiding in
Dynamic Disk country. Totally unnecessary for the
average desktop user to be exposed to Dynamic Disk. I don't
know why Microsoft insists that the Dynamic Disk trap
be present in their OS. It's OK for it to exist, as
long as it's totally optional and requires some effort
to get to. I've learned to always check Diskmgmt.msc immediately
after connecting a new disk, in case I've made it dynamic by
accident.

Paul
 
E

Ed Cryer

If you removed the F:Spare Space, is there any chance the Aomei would run ?
That would bring you back to four partitions.

Also, the partition numbers are probably supposed to be 27,07,07,07 after
conversion, as that would be what they use on my laptop (27 for the
recovery partition, the PQService thing). The 27 may be an attempt
to keep it hidden. I don't think that normally mounts, on my laptop.
I don't even know what's in PQService.

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

And as error messages go, I'd give that one high marks. Even if
the English is a little tortured, they went to a bit more
effort than your average software developer.

And their FAQ does hint at the level of evil hiding in
Dynamic Disk country. Totally unnecessary for the
average desktop user to be exposed to Dynamic Disk. I don't
know why Microsoft insists that the Dynamic Disk trap
be present in their OS. It's OK for it to exist, as
long as it's totally optional and requires some effort
to get to. I've learned to always check Diskmgmt.msc immediately
after connecting a new disk, in case I've made it dynamic by
accident.

Paul
I ran Testdisk on the SpareSpace partition, and it found a space
conflict between partitions. Then I deleted that volume and tried
Testdisk again on the Win8 partition. That failed likewise with space
conflict between partitions. The log is below. It seems the Win8
partition is involved in the conflict.

Out of interest I ran the Aomei program and this time it got past the
previous fail but told me this was a demo prog and I'd have to pay for a
license (39 USD). Whether it will work or not when I've paid, that seems
a bit of a luxury for one usage. I'll wait a while and have a think.

Ed



Sun Oct 09 12:09:51 2011
Command line: TestDisk

TestDisk 6.12-WIP, Data Recovery Utility, March 2011
Christophe GRENIER <[email protected]>
http://www.cgsecurity.org
OS: Windows 7 (7601) SP1
Compiler: GCC 4.5, MinGW 3.11
Compilation date: May 7 2011 12:20:37
ext2fs lib: none, ntfs lib: none, reiserfs lib: none, ewf lib: none
disk_get_size_win32
IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\PhysicalDrive0)=640135028736
disk_get_size_win32
IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\PhysicalDrive1)=1000204886016
filewin32_getfilesize(\\.\PhysicalDrive2) GetFileSize err Incorrect
function.
filewin32_setfilepointer(\\.\PhysicalDrive2) SetFilePointer err
Incorrect function.
Warning: can't get size for \\.\PhysicalDrive2
filewin32_getfilesize(\\.\PhysicalDrive3) GetFileSize err Incorrect
function.
filewin32_setfilepointer(\\.\PhysicalDrive3) SetFilePointer err
Incorrect function.
Warning: can't get size for \\.\PhysicalDrive3
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\C:)=312673828864
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\D:)=43331706880
filewin32_getfilesize(\\.\E:) GetFileSize err Incorrect function.
filewin32_setfilepointer(\\.\E:) SetFilePointer err Incorrect function.
Warning: can't get size for \\.\E:
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\G:)=0
Warning: can't get size for \\.\G:
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\H:)=0
Warning: can't get size for \\.\H:
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\I:)=1000202241024
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\J:)=14680064000
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\K:)=104857600
Hard disk list
Disk \\.\PhysicalDrive0 - 640 GB / 596 GiB - CHS 77825 255 63, sector
size=512
Disk \\.\PhysicalDrive1 - 1000 GB / 931 GiB - CHS 121601 255 63, sector
size=512
Drive C: - 312 GB / 291 GiB - CHS 38013 255 63, sector size=512
Drive D: - 43 GB / 40 GiB - CHS 5268 255 63, sector size=512
Drive I: - 1000 GB / 931 GiB - CHS 121600 255 63, sector size=512
Drive J: - 14 GB / 13 GiB - CHS 1784 255 63, sector size=512
Drive K: - 104 MB / 100 MiB - CHS 12 255 63, sector size=512

Partition table type (auto): None
Drive D: - 43 GB / 40 GiB
Partition table type: Intel

Analyse Drive D: - 43 GB / 40 GiB - CHS 5268 255 63
Geometry from i386 MBR: head=115 sector=52
BAD_RS LBA=1936269394 5382406
check_part_i386 1 type 4F: no test
BAD_RS LBA=1917848077 5967333
check_part_i386 2 type 73: no test
BAD_RS LBA=1818575915 5855017
check_part_i386 3 type 2B: no test
BAD_RS LBA=2844524554 5982593
check_part_i386 4 type 61: no test
Current partition structure:
1 * Sys=4F 120527 49 53 234813 237 34 1836016416

Bad relative sector.
2 * Sys=73 119380 132 62 153270 41 37 544437093

Bad relative sector.
3 * Sys=2B 113201 29 24 147074 114 59 544175136

Bad relative sector.
4 * SpeedStor 177063 118 26 177066 225 63 54974

Bad relative sector.
Only one partition must be bootable
Space conflict between the following two partitions
3 * Sys=2B 113201 29 24 147074 114 59 544175136
2 * Sys=73 119380 132 62 153270 41 37 544437093
Space conflict between the following two partitions
2 * Sys=73 119380 132 62 153270 41 37 544437093
1 * Sys=4F 120527 49 53 234813 237 34 1836016416
Space conflict between the following two partitions
1 * Sys=4F 120527 49 53 234813 237 34 1836016416
4 * SpeedStor 177063 118 26 177066 225 63 54974
Ask the user for vista mode
Computes LBA from CHS for Drive D: - 43 GB / 40 GiB - CHS 5269 255 63
Allow partial last cylinder : Yes
search_vista_part: 1

search_part()
Drive D: - 43 GB / 40 GiB - CHS 5269 255 63
Search for partition aborted

Results

interface_write()

No partition found or selected for recovery
simulate write!

write_mbr_i386: starting...
write_all_log_i386: starting...
No extended partition

TestDisk exited normally.
 
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E

Ed Cryer

LOL. BackToBasic.jpg . Good work :)

See, this was easy :)

Microsoft will have to come up with more challenges for you.

Paul
Glad you share my outlook and sense of humour, Paul. I haven't finished
yet, though. I'm forestalling the last two items while I google around
for some other way of shifting the System files from one partition to
another. I've found all kinds of people who've messed up in more ways
that I can store mentally, but not this specific one.
My Paragon program can handle everything now, so I've got more backups
and system images than our whole county could use. :)
And I have no reservations about Windows update not working; so I really
can take my time on this one.

Ed
 
K

KCB

Ed Cryer said:
Glad you share my outlook and sense of humour, Paul. I haven't finished
yet, though. I'm forestalling the last two items while I google around for
some other way of shifting the System files from one partition to another.
I've found all kinds of people who've messed up in more ways that I can
store mentally, but not this specific one.
My Paragon program can handle everything now, so I've got more backups and
system images than our whole county could use. :)
And I have no reservations about Windows update not working; so I really
can take my time on this one.

Ed
Have you rid yourself of Win8, and repaired Win7?
 
G

Gene E. Bloch

LOL. BackToBasic.jpg . Good work :)

See, this was easy :)

Microsoft will have to come up with more challenges for you.
If I were Ed Cryer, I'm not sure I'd thank you for that wish :)
 
E

Ed Cryer

Have you rid yourself of Win8, and repaired Win7?

I'm holding back on the last stage while I google and review all
options. There's no imminent danger, now that I've removed all the boot
files from XWin8.
These are the ones I favour.
1. Set Acer partition as Active inside Win7, reboot with Windows disk,
repair, reboot.
2. Delete XWin8 from Linux live CD, reboot from Windows disk etc...

Meanwhile I've got Win8 running inside VirtualBox.

When I've done it to the very end I'll post a "Removing Windows 8 -
Solved" post in here. These things get picked up by Google in
nanoseconds, and go all around the world, copied often enough into
different languages by various people.

Ed
 
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E

Ed Cryer

I'm holding back on the last stage while I google and review all
options. There's no imminent danger, now that I've removed all the boot
files from XWin8.
These are the ones I favour.
1. Set Acer partition as Active inside Win7, reboot with Windows disk,
repair, reboot.
2. Delete XWin8 from Linux live CD, reboot from Windows disk etc...

Meanwhile I've got Win8 running inside VirtualBox.

When I've done it to the very end I'll post a "Removing Windows 8 -
Solved" post in here. These things get picked up by Google in
nanoseconds, and go all around the world, copied often enough into
different languages by various people.

Ed
9 Windows updates went in today with no problem at all. That was the
final test.
I've been using the machine now for a week, and not one sign of any
problem. In fact it looks and feels exactly as it did; and I've run
large games as well as Skype, graphics editing and the usual.

I was looking for some system-tinkering software for the last stage,
since it strikes me as being a very easy job for a Win7 systems programmer.
1. Set Win7 as the System disk.
2. Delete XWin8 partition.
3. Make Win7 partition bootable.

I'll do it the way I planned when I get time.

Ed
 
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K

KCB

Ed Cryer said:
9 Windows updates went in today with no problem at all. That was the final
test.
I've been using the machine now for a week, and not one sign of any
problem. In fact it looks and feels exactly as it did; and I've run large
games as well as Skype, graphics editing and the usual.

I was looking for some system-tinkering software for the last stage, since
it strikes me as being a very easy job for a Win7 systems programmer.
1. Set Win7 as the System disk.
2. Delete XWin8 partition.
3. Make Win7 partition bootable.

I'll do it the way I planned when I get time.

Ed
I started out with Win8 in VirtualBox, but couldn't get the screen
resolution to work 1920*1080 full screen, so then put it on a separate
partition, just like you did. I've since formatted the partition, and am
back to Virtual Box. Either way, it would be much more fun to play with a
touch-screen monitor. I DID get to use Win7 on a touch-screen briefly, and
it was an interesting experience, although the mouse is still preferred.
 

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