You do not need the recovery partition unless you plan to return the computer to the like-new state.
Two things you need to do:
1. complete Windows Backup to an external USB drive
2. Make a System Repair Disk
Control Panel | Backup & Restore | in the left-hand task pane, select "Create a System Image"
Almost the same as 1: except select "Create a system repair disk"
Interuption: must run, will get back with more.