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Windows 7: Will system image restore wipe my hidden OEM partition ? Help


18 Jan 2013   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 
Will system image restore wipe my hidden OEM partition ? Help

Hi

I need some help. I have a DELL XPS15 L502x laptop with Pentium i7 processor and 8gb RAM running Windows 7 64bit.

I have created a System Image of my current system and software setup using windows backup/restore wizard and also backed up my data files.

On creating the system image, the applet showed that two partitions were being imaged i.e the C: System partition (which contains Windows and my data files) and a Recovery partition on the same drive (which i believe is Dells factory partition containing a factory image of the system). However, through the disk management, i notice there is in fact a third possibly hidden OEM partition which I believe contains Dells diagnostic tools. This partition does not show up as being imaged and i believe has therefore been omitted from the created image snapshot. Now I dont mind that this OEM partition is not backed up in my image as long as this partition will not be wiped when i go to restore the image. Anyone know what happens here ??? I wouldnt want this partition to be wiped even if it is not backed up in my system image. I just want to be able to restore my system partion and the recovery partition if i must, but still keeping this OEM partition intact.

I started up the System Recover applet (though I quit before finishing) and noticed that it had a check box that said "format and repartition disk" which was unchecked and greyed out. Now in an old tutorial on this forum (http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/675-system-image-recovery.html)
I found this as options for this check box, as quoted below...

"1) Grayed out and selected
You are forced to have the whole disk formatted and repartitioned to match the partition structure of the disk the image was made from. This can occur when restoring an image to a new disk or the original disk with a modified partition structure. Data on other partitions on the disk you are restoring to will be lost.

2) Grayed out and unselected
You are not given the option to format and repartition the disk. This will occur if you are restoring Windows from a partition on the same disk.

3) Not grayed out and unselected
Here you have the option to select format the whole disk and repartition or not. In this case the disk the image was taken from has a matching partition structure to the disk you are restoring the image to. By not selecting the format and repartition option your image will be restored and other partitions untouched such as valuable data partitions. "

So the question is, in my case, which is greyed out and unchecked (ie. option 2), does this mean that my OEM partition will not be wiped or does the greyed out checkbox just mean I dont have a choice but it will be wiped regardless. Anyone know through experience etc ??

Otherwise, i might have to consider Macrium Reflect as an alternative ?

Would appreciate your help in resolving this.
Thanks


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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18 Jan 2013   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit SP1 x64
 
 

No one tries Macrium and then decides to trust Windows 7 native imaging.

Many people suffer from Windows native imaging and then decide to trust Macrium or one of the other third party imagers.

I do not know what Windows is supposed to do for each of the 3 options which it gives you,
but whatever you choose the outcome may be unpredictable.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Jan 2013   #3
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

With Windows imaging, it's like on the high seas - you never know what is going to happen.

But with free Macrium, you have full control over things. If you restore e.g. the C partition, no other partition will be affected.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


18 Jan 2013   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Thanks for teh resposes so far. Disappointed in the low confidence of the windows product so far though. Anyone with experience with the issue able to assist with direct answars to my questions please ? ??

I would rather use the windows product if it works than just install a third party product due to my ignorance.

Appreciate your help. Thanks
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Jan 2013   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ult. x64 Windows 8.1 x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gjhomes View Post
I would rather use the windows product if it works than just install a third party product due to my ignorance.
Welcome to SevenForums.

Its not through ignorance that you would use a 3rd party product, but rather that the Windows imaging product is hard to understand and considered to be inferior. Its a universal problem.

Macrium Reflect is widely used here, and gives you complete flexibility and absolute user control in exactly what is imaged and restored - something you desire from your description of the OEM partition.

If you want to try it, you can download this ready-made WinPE ISO, burn it to USB and then image and restore using that without ever having to install Macrium to your PC:

https://drive.google.com/#folders/0B...1VvWWd6b0dLSE0

This is an excellent tutorial that describes its working:

Imaging with free Macrium

I predict that once you have tried it, you will never look back.

Regards,
Golden
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Jan 2013   #6
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gjhomes View Post
Thanks for teh resposes so far. Disappointed in the low confidence of the windows product so far though. Anyone with experience with the issue able to assist with direct answars to my questions please ? ??

I would rather use the windows product if it works than just install a third party product due to my ignorance.

Appreciate your help. Thanks
I understand your point. Problem is that hardly anybody uses this lousy Windows imaging. So it will be hard to find someone who can answer your questions. Michael in Australia (mjf) was using it quite a bit. Maybe you can send him a PM and ask for his views.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Jan 2013   #7

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Golden View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gjhomes View Post
I would rather use the windows product if it works than just install a third party product due to my ignorance.
Welcome to SevenForums.

Its not through ignorance that you would use a 3rd party product, but rather that the Windows imaging product is hard to understand and considered to be inferior. Its a universal problem.

Macrium Reflect is widely used here, and gives you complete flexibility and absolute user control in exactly what is imaged and restored - something you desire from your description of the OEM partition.

If you want to try it, you can download this ready-made WinPE ISO, burn it to USB and then image and restore using that without ever having to install Macrium to your PC:

https://drive.google.com/#folders/0B...1VvWWd6b0dLSE0

This is an excellent tutorial that describes its working:

Imaging with free Macrium

I predict that once you have tried it, you will never look back.

Regards,
Golden

Thanks for the welcome. And thanks for the information. I didnt know one could run the software without installing!!!. Seriously thinking of giving this a whirl.!!!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Jan 2013   #8

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gjhomes View Post
Thanks for teh resposes so far. Disappointed in the low confidence of the windows product so far though. Anyone with experience with the issue able to assist with direct answars to my questions please ? ??

I would rather use the windows product if it works than just install a third party product due to my ignorance.

Appreciate your help. Thanks
I understand your point. Problem is that hardly anybody uses this lousy Windows imaging. So it will be hard to find someone who can answer your questions. Michael in Australia (mjf) was using it quite a bit. Maybe you can send him a PM and ask for his views.
Thanks for the information and your response. I will try to contact Michael in Australia !!!. I like to figure these things out where i can.
Regards
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Jan 2013   #9

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gjhomes View Post
Thanks for teh resposes so far. Disappointed in the low confidence of the windows product so far though. Anyone with experience with the issue able to assist with direct answars to my questions please ? ??

I would rather use the windows product if it works than just install a third party product due to my ignorance.

Appreciate your help. Thanks
I understand your point. Problem is that hardly anybody uses this lousy Windows imaging. So it will be hard to find someone who can answer your questions. Michael in Australia (mjf) was using it quite a bit. Maybe you can send him a PM and ask for his views.

Funny!! I cant seem to get to PM. I am new here so that may be a problem!!!. If its not too much trouble, could you perhaps point him to this thread? Would appreciate it. Unless there is a simple way to get PM working. Thanks again
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Jan 2013   #10

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ult. x64 Windows 8.1 x64
 
 

Yes, as a new member I think there is a restriction on PM's. I have PM'ed MJF and pointed him here.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Will system image restore wipe my hidden OEM partition ? Help




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