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Windows 7: Reinstalling Windows 7 Bootloader Without Access to Windows Partition


24 Feb 2013   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 
Reinstalling Windows 7 Bootloader Without Access to Windows Partition

My friend asked me to help him dual boot Linux on his computer, so I used the device manager to shrink his Windows partition and installed Ubuntu in the free space. He has a Lenovo Y580, which features RapidDrive technology. As I understood it, this technology was like ReadyBoost, but with an mSATA Solid State Drive. I was wrong. RapidDrive operates at a filesystem level, effectively spanning the data across the solid state drive and the hard disk drive. This configuration isn't readable by anything but the host installation of Windows and Lenovo's One Key Recovery (OKR) factory-defaults restoration software.

For some reason probably related to RapidDrive, the Ubuntu install failed. After the installation completed, GRUB2 (the GRand Unified Bootloader, version 2) didn't appear. After some troubleshooting, I decided that I wanted to boot into Windows, and found that I couldn't. The (broken) copy of GRUB had overwritten Microsoft's bootloader.

I tried to use Super Grub Disk to boot the Windows partition manually, but it wouldn't work. So I decided to use the Windows Recovery Disc to repair the startup process. It worked, but it made things worse. Instead of repairing the boot for my Windows installation, it "repaired" it for Lenovo's hidden OKR partitions. As I understand it, the bootsector points to one of the recovery partitions which has the Boot Manager installed in it. Unfortunately, there isn't a BCD store on that partition, so the boot fails, and I can't boot the recovery partition. There is, apparently, a store on the other recovery partition, because when I try to boot it manually, it says that it can't access the device it needs (0xc000000e).

Running startup repair again produces the same result every time: an error about a corrupted filesystem. Unfortunately, a "corrupted" filesystem (one on the SSD that's bigger than the drive, and one on the HDD that's missing data) is normal for a RapidDrive system.

Is there a way to manually configure the Windows 7 bootloader to point to the partition I need it to, without access to the destination Windows partition?
Also, is there a way that I can restore the ability to boot my recovery partition?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

24 Feb 2013   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

To Remove Linux take look at this post:
Error 0xc0000225 on boot

Remove Grub - Restore Windows 7

Lenovo's One Key Recovery may not after doing the above.

information   Information
We always assume you have made your Recovery Disks using the OEM manufacturer's Recovery Media Creator app the first day you had your new PC.
& made the Startup Repair CD.
startup repair disc-create


Did you make the OEM manufacturer's Recovery Disks?

Lenovo Recovery
Lenovo Support - Home (US)

You can Order Lenovo Recovery Disks from here:
Lenovo Support - Home (US)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Feb 2013   #3

Windows 8 Pro (32-bit)
 
 

RapidDrive sounds suspiciously like a Lenovo-specific clone of Apple's Fusion Drive.

I think it's best if you consult with lenovo, as it's pretty uncommon technology and very few people here would be familiar with it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


24 Feb 2013   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by theog View Post
To Remove Linux take look at this post:
Error 0xc0000225 on boot
I have already removed the Ubuntu partition. From this link it looks like I shouldn't have done that before fixing the MBR. I don't think I could have done that before anyway, as the recovery environment couldn't access the Windows partition.
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by theog View Post
I got really excited when I saw this, because I thought this would work around not being able to access the Windows partition. Sadly, that wasn't the case. bootsect /nt60 SYS /mbr produced
Code:
Target volumes will be updated with BOOTMGR compatible bootcode.

The system partition was not found:
    The requested system device cannot be found.
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by theog View Post
Lenovo's One Key Recovery may not after doing the above.
If I can get the Windows partition to boot, I don't care about that. I'll make a substitute recovery solution. I was hoping to boot in before so I could use this guide that explains how to access the contents of this monster partition by modifying the OKR software.

information   Information
We always assume you have made your Recovery Disks using the OEM manufacturer's Recovery Media Creator app the first day you had your new PC.
& made the Startup Repair CD.
startup repair disc-create


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by theog View Post
Did you make the OEM manufacturer's Recovery Disks?
Alas, I did not, and I don't think my friend did either. The disc that I have is from another computer. I
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by theog View Post
Lenovo Recovery
Lenovo Support - Home (US)

You can Order Lenovo Recovery Disks from here:
Lenovo Support - Home (US)
That might be what I need to do... they would have the drivers necessary to access that monster partition.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Feb 2013   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by FuturDreamz View Post
RapidDrive sounds suspiciously like a Lenovo-specific clone of Apple's Fusion Drive.

I think it's best if you consult with lenovo, as it's pretty uncommon technology and very few people here would be familiar with it.
That may be so, but there are plenty who are more familiar than I with the Windows 7 boot process. I was hoping that there was a way to get the steps between POST and winload.exe in place without needing access to the partition that contains winload.exe.

I plan to contact a lenovo service center tomorrow. They're not open today.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Feb 2013   #6

Windows 8 Pro (32-bit)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by EchoLynx View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by FuturDreamz View Post
RapidDrive sounds suspiciously like a Lenovo-specific clone of Apple's Fusion Drive.

I think it's best if you consult with lenovo, as it's pretty uncommon technology and very few people here would be familiar with it.
That may be so, but there are plenty who are more familiar than I with the Windows 7 boot process. I was hoping that there was a way to get the steps between POST and winload.exe in place without needing access to the partition that contains winload.exe.

I plan to contact a lenovo service center tomorrow. They're not open today.
The whole OS is rearranged around RapidDrive. As you noticed it changes how the system works. I haven't been able to find the precise technical explanation of how it works, so I can't guarantee that what we know will properly apply to this scenario.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Feb 2013   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by FuturDreamz View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by EchoLynx View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by FuturDreamz View Post
RapidDrive sounds suspiciously like a Lenovo-specific clone of Apple's Fusion Drive.

I think it's best if you consult with lenovo, as it's pretty uncommon technology and very few people here would be familiar with it.
That may be so, but there are plenty who are more familiar than I with the Windows 7 boot process. I was hoping that there was a way to get the steps between POST and winload.exe in place without needing access to the partition that contains winload.exe.

I plan to contact a lenovo service center tomorrow. They're not open today.
The whole OS is rearranged around RapidDrive. As you noticed it changes how the system works. I haven't been able to find the precise technical explanation of how it works, so I can't guarantee that what we know will properly apply to this scenario.
I'm happy with whatever you folks are willing to volunteer. Your time is valuable, and I appreciate whatever you have to offer. I admire you're excellence-oriented perspective, but I don't mind if any one person or group of people doesn't know something because honestly, sometimes we run into things we don't understand... like a proprietary hybrid hdd-sdd mutant operating system.

Thank you.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Feb 2013   #8
Microsoft MVP

 

The way others have worked is a (32gb) SSD chip which is RAIDed to the HD to provide caching. It has even been unRAIDed then partitioned in Disk Mgmt to install Windows 7 upon as an SSD. But to access it you must first unRAID it and/or turn of Intel Rapid Storage technology - if that's what's controlling it.

Otherwise it will appear as part of the HD in Disk Mgmt since it is RAIDED under most such setups.

This would be the way to repair it if possible: by marking System Reserved partition Active then running Startup Repair - Run up to 3 Separate Times.

This is the first case I've seen where Linux has messed with such a setup. Try deleting GRUB and Linux partition, then running the repairs above to see how forgiving it is. This is the way Windows 7 is normally recovered from Linux if it can be. But sometimes it requires wiping the HD first.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Feb 2013   #9

Windows 8 Pro (32-bit)
 
 

Is it RAIDed or tiered storage? I'm worried it's like a Fusion Drive, where the OS (or software) is installed onto the SSD and moves files to and from the HDD as needed.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Feb 2013   #10

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I don't think it's a RAID. I think it's like the Fusion Drive.

I dug around in the recovery partitions a bit, and I found some interesting stuff. I'm currently copying the contents to my laptop via external hard drive.

fixingRapidDriveBoot1.png

"DriverToWinre.cmd" sounds really promising. If WinRE could read the drive, it would be able to detect my Windows installation and the startup repair could complete successfully!

Code:
::Inject RapidDrive into WinRe   by Fench Fang 2012/03/13

MD REMOUNT
Dism.exe /MOUNT-wim /wimfile:"c:\windows\system32\recovery\WINRE.WIM" /index:1 /MOUNTdir:"REMOUNT"
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
if exist "REMOUNT\Windows\SysWOW64" Copy C:\Windows\System32\drivers\Hybriddiskx64.sys REMOUNT\windows\system32\drivers\Hybriddisk.sys /v /y
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
if not exist "REMOUNT\Windows\SysWOW64" Copy C:\Windows\System32\drivers\Hybriddiskx86.sys REMOUNT\windows\system32\drivers\Hybriddisk.sys /v /y
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
reg load HKLM\SYSHIVE "REMOUNT\windows\system32\config\system"
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
reg add "HKLM\SYSHIVE\ControlSet001\services\HybridDisk" /v Group /t REG_SZ /d "Boot Bus Extender" /f
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
reg add "HKLM\SYSHIVE\ControlSet001\services\HybridDisk" /v ImagePath /t REG_EXPAND_SZ /d "System32\drivers\HybridDisk.sys" /f
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
reg add "HKLM\SYSHIVE\ControlSet001\services\HybridDisk" /v ErrorControl /t REG_DWORD /d 3 /f
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
reg add "HKLM\SYSHIVE\ControlSet001\services\HybridDisk" /v Start /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
reg add "HKLM\SYSHIVE\ControlSet001\services\HybridDisk" /v Type /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
reg add "HKLM\SYSHIVE\ControlSet001\Control\Class\{4D36E967-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}" /v UpperFilters /t REG_MULTI_SZ /d "HybridDisk\0PartMgr" /f
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
reg unload HKLM\SYSHIVE
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
Dism.exe /unMOUNT-wim /commit /MOUNTdir:"REMOUNT"
if "%errorlevel%" neq "0" pause
RD REMOUNT /s /q
How can I use this to add the drivers to an image of my WinRE DVD-RAM?


Attached Thumbnails
Reinstalling Windows 7 Bootloader Without Access to Windows Partition-fixingrapiddriveboot1.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Reinstalling Windows 7 Bootloader Without Access to Windows Partition




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