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Windows 7: Windows 7 Hidden Partition


09 Nov 2012   #1

Windows 7 Pro 64bit
 
 
Windows 7 Hidden Partition

Hi.
I don't see any hidden partitions neither in "Disk Manager" nor in "MiniTool Partition Wizard Home Edition".
It turns Windows 7 may don't create a hidden partiton? And use for BOOT, bootmgr and System Volume Information the same partition as for Windows dir? And what does it depend: create or not create a hidden partition during install?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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09 Nov 2012   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bits 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Do you want to know what the purpose is of "hidden partition"? You mean "system reserved"? That partition isn't hidden at all!

Post disk management screenshot or partition wizard screenshot
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Nov 2012   #3

Windows 7 Pro 64bit
 
 

Yes, I mean "system reserved" and it must be created but seems to be it is absent. Why? And once again, what does it depend: installer has created or has not created a hidden partition during install? And how can I control creation of hidden partiton during install?





My System SpecsSystem Spec
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09 Nov 2012   #4

Windows 7 Pro 64bit
 
 

Is it safe to create a "hidden partition" when there is no unallocated space on my disk?
There are only partitions with data. And maybe presence of unallocated space is the main condition to create a "hidden partition" during installation? And if there is no unallocated space on the disk, "hidden partition" never created, is it so or not?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Nov 2012   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bits 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

"system reserved" is only created if you install Windows 7 on a totally clean disk with nothing on it (no partitions at all)!

"system reserved" will be marked active then automatically.
Install puts bootmgr and bootmenu on an active parttion if there is one.
Disk is not empty and no active partitions... installation makes the parttion where you install Windows 7 active.


Purpose of seperate boot partition:
  • boot partition and real OS are on seperate partition, so you can keep bootmgr and boot menu and still remove Windows 7. You can still boot linux, vista, winxp afterwards for example
  • You can use bitlocker from boot partition and let it encrypt/decrypt your Windows 7 partition. bitlocker must be on NOT encrypted partition
You understand? You can still create it, if you want. If so post screenshot of disk management
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Nov 2012   #6

Windows 7 Professional x64 Linux Mint 16
 
 

If you do your own installs there is no reason to ever have a system reserved partition. It takes up a primary label you could be using somewhere else on the hard drive. As mentioned , create your partitions before installing the OS and you will never get one.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Nov 2012   #7
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by uswin View Post
Is it safe to create a "hidden partition" when there is no unallocated space on my disk?
There are only partitions with data. And maybe presence of unallocated space is the main condition to create a "hidden partition" during installation? And if there is no unallocated space on the disk, "hidden partition" never created, is it so or not?
If you are still talking about a System Reserved Partition and you want to create one then this tutorial tells you how
System Reserved : Create for Dual Boot
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Nov 2012   #8

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 / WinXP Pro x86 on (2)
 
 

Your C partition is already marked "active". So that's where Windows 7's boot manager went. It also holds your Windows 7 system as well.

If you were to install additional OS's, the boot manager menu in this C partition would simply be updated to reflect the current Windows 7 as well as the additional OS in some other partition. But this C partition would still remain the "active" partition booted to by the BIOS, where the boot process then begins using the boot manager programs which have been placed there by the Windows 7 installer.

You don't need a "system reserved" partition to hold the boot manager and boot menu if you don't want to or if your install of Windows 7 was to what already was the "active" partition so that the installer doesn't need to create its own small "system reserved" partition for this purpose. As was explained, this normally only occurs when you install Windows 7 to a completely empty drive, i.e. one which does not already contain an existing "active" partition".

Since your current operational setup doesn't have a "system reserved" partition, and yet your C partition is also marked "active" and obviously holds Windows 7 as well, you must have had an earlier OS in the same space (say WinXP? Win98?) which had already marked the partition as "active" when its original install had been done.

Did you "upgrade" from WinXP to Windows 7? That's one way to have ended up with what you currently have, and it's also perfectly fine.

Or, you could pre-create an empty partition, mark it "active", and then install Windows 7 into it. Again, you'd end up with no "system reserved". Again, also perfectly fine.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Nov 2012   #9
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

If you don't plan to multiboot then the system reserved partition is not required. However, even though you don't strictly need it, I would recommend a system reserved if you plan to say dual boot (see the tutorial reference). It is a good idea to have your bootmgr and BCD separate from your OS partitions when you have more than one OS. This way one OS partition is not dependent on the other.

A system reserved partition is also required if you wish to have your OS on a logical partition/drive. This may not apply to you but some OEM PCs like HP use all the partitions so that making the OS partition logical has its advantages.

Finally, you may want it if you use BitLocker drive encryption.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Nov 2012   #10
Microsoft MVP

 

How is performance? It looks OK so I'd leave it alone if there are no problems.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Windows 7 Hidden Partition




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