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Windows 7: Win 7 backup fails to complete because of unnamed Fat32 partition


24 Aug 2013   #1

Windows 7 Enterprise 64
 
 
Win 7 backup fails to complete because of unnamed Fat32 partition

For some reason the 1TB hdd in my custom built Win 7 desktop has an unnamed 93GB Fat32 partition as well as a 931 GB NTFS c: partition. When I try to create a system image it does not complete successfully because of the Fat 32 partition. How can I get rid of the unwanted partition so I can backup my system without starting from scratch, reformatting the disk and labouriously re-installing all the applications?

The error message suggests using the Convert xx command but I don't see how to do this since the unwanted partition does not have a volume label to use.

I don't mind just losing the 93 GB space.

Thanks

absc


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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25 Aug 2013   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 Pro 64-bit
 
 

Hello absc and welcome to Seven Forums.

If you're sure there's nothing on the 93GB Fat32 partition that you don't want to lose, you could probably delete that partition which would create unallocated space. Then you could extend or resize the C: partition to add the unallocated 93Gb to it. (Depending where in relation to the C: partition the unallocated space is located. If it's immediately adjacent you could probably resize. If it's separated by another partition you could extend.) There's a free utility called MiniTool Partition Wizard that should be able to do that for you.

MiniTool Partition Wizard - delete a partition

MiniTool Partition Wizard - extend partition

MiniTool Partition Wizard - resize partition
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Aug 2013   #3

Win 7 Pro x64 SP1, Win 7 Ult x86 SP1
 
 

@absc
Can you post a screen shot of your Disk Management?
Disk Management - Post a Screen Capture Image

You say you have a 931 GB partition and a 93 GB partition on a 1 TB HD.

I have a 1 TB HD and the total size for all partitions is 931.51 GB in Windows Disk Management...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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26 Aug 2013   #4

Windows 7 Enterprise 64
 
 
Win 7 backup fails to complete because of unnamed Fat32 partition

Thanks to both your comments. DM screenshot is attached. My mistake, I thought the unwanted partition was 93 GB not 96.


Attached Thumbnails
Win 7 backup fails to complete because of unnamed Fat32 partition-snip.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Aug 2013   #5

Win 7 Pro x64 SP1, Win 7 Ult x86 SP1
 
 

The fat32 partition is 96 MB (Megabytes), not GB (Gigabytes), so your partition sizes are correct for a 1 TB HD.
The fat32 partition is the System Active partition, so it is used to boot up Windows.
Don't delete it or you won't be able to boot Windows without making other changes/fixes.

I don't know why it is fat32 and not NTFS.
How did you install Windows 7?
Did you upgrade from some other OS such as XP or Vista?
Where did you get the Win 7 disc?

I'll ask gregrocker to look at this thread.
He's the top installation expert and can give you instructions for moving the boot info to your C partition so you can get rid of the fat32 partition.
I don't want to give you wrong info and get you stuck where Windows won't boot up.

You could also consider using an Imaging program such as Macrium.
Macrium and other imaging programs are better and easier to use than the built in Windows Imaging imho.
I doubt you would have a problem using Macrium, even with the fat32 partition.
Imaging with free Macrium
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Aug 2013   #6
Microsoft MVP

 

Did you read the link Disk Management - Post a Screen Capture Image so you'd know how to do it correctly? Please maximize the window and capture the full drive map and listings so we can be sure that the FAT32 is booting Windows 7.

Please also answer all of David's questions about how this install was done. You should not have a FAT32 System partition unless it was configured that way in advance of install for some reason I've not seen before.

If it's not causing any more problems than with Windows 7 backup imaging and you want to try another imaging app as suggested, then you might be able to keep it that way. But if you want to change it to be correct, your options are to:

To reinstall correctly you'd want to delete all partitions during install using the Drive Options at Steps 7 and 8 of Clean Install Windows 7 then create and format partitions you want, install to first partition ignoring the 100mb SysReserved the installer will create.

Or you can move the System flag to C so you can delete the FAT32. Mark C Partition Active to run Startup Repair - Run up to 3 Separate Times until the System flag moves to C. It is then safe to delete the FAT partition, recover the space into C if you want using How to extend partition easily with Partition Wizard - video help.

Another possibility is to use free Partition Wizard bootable CD to delete the 96mb partition, create a new NTFS Primary partition there, Modify>Set to Active, label System Reserved, then boot the Windows 7 installer to run Startup Repair - Run up to 3 Separate Times, copying in the boot files if necessary by temporarily giving it a letter.

Make a full HD backup image first using another app as suggested, and back up your files.

David may need to help you with this as traveling in Europe for two weeks.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Aug 2013   #7

Windows 7 Enterprise 64
 
 

I had the PC custom built 2 or 3 years ago by a small outfit that regrettably no longer exist. I don't know how they installed the OS but I do have an install disc copy together and a product key. They said they had an OEM licence. They did not normally supply the OS disc and I had to pay extra for it.

I have attached a new shot of the DM screen. I have followed the instructions on posting a screen shot to the letter and I can't find any more information no matter what options I try. I can't find anything on this page about an EFI system partition. I have removed the external HD. I see that what comes up in my reply is a thumbnail of the screen shot. Is that correct or what am I not doing?

As I understand it I do have EFI bootup. I can't find EFI mentioned anywhere in BIOS setup except on the Exit page where one of the options is to "Launch EFI Shell from filesystem device", and the bootup screen instructs to press F2 or del to run UEFI setup.

I'll try to create a disc image with Macrium as you suggest.


Attached Thumbnails
Win 7 backup fails to complete because of unnamed Fat32 partition-capture.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Aug 2013   #8

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 Pro 64-bit
 
 

Would this tutorial be of any help?

Convert FAT or FAT32 Volume to NTFS

And this tutorial shows how to add, change or remove a drive letter.

http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials...ndows-7-a.html
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Aug 2013   #9

Windows 7 Enterprise 64
 
 

Thanks very much marsminar. My worry is that I don't have a backup if something goes wrong.

If the Fat 32 partition is used to boot up and I convert it to NTFS, will Windows then boot up correctly from it?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Aug 2013   #10
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

First create an image of your main (Boot,... ) partition using the free Macrium Reflect. Then follow marsmimar's advice or get rid of the system reserved partition. Why the person who built your PC made system reserved FAT32 is staggering.

You may also want to follow Gregrocker's advice
"Or you can move the System flag to C so you can delete the FAT32. Mark C Partition Active to run Startup Repair - Run up to 3 Separate Times until the System flag moves to C. It is then safe to delete the FAT partition, recover the space into C if you want using How to extend partition easily with Partition Wizard - video help."
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Win 7 backup fails to complete because of unnamed Fat32 partition




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