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Windows 7: Removing 100MB system partition - no re-install needed


24 Oct 2009   #1

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 
Removing 100MB system partition - no re-install needed

Hi all.

I don't know about you guys but the extra 100 MB system partition that sometimes gets created annoys me -- I like to have my OS installed cleanly on a SINGLE partition - and even when doing a clean install on a new 1TB disk I don't want to assign any more than 50 GB (Max) to the Windows 7 partition so here's how to fix it without doing a re-install.

( I know its only a single small 100MB partition which is nothing on a 1.5TB disk - but it still annoys me - and its easier to backup and deploy images if they are all on a SINGLE partition).

1) Ensure you have a bootable restore version of your backup software and the Windows 7 install DVD -- you'll need that later.

2) Backup your OS with Acronis True Image / Ghost -- Acronis works fine since you can specify the partition size on restore and change the partition type.

3) Delete the OS partition AND the system partition. You can use something like the Windows install disk - but after deleting the partitions don't start the install.
Other partition deletion software such as GPARTED can be used

4) Restore the OS and specify partition size. ALSO CHANGE PARTITION TYPE TO ACTIVE.

5) Now boot from the Windows Install disk and select REPAIR SYSTEM -- you'll need to do this since the restored OS will be missing BOOTMGR on it.

6) Let repair do its thing

7) Boot into Windows 7 -- now its on a nice single partition.

Cheeers

jimbo

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

24 Oct 2009   #2

XP, Seven, 2008R2
 
 

or you could simply use the bcdboot command to create the boot manager to the Windows drive and set it "active" using the diskpart command. Although that one only works if Windows is on a primary partition.

Good job on the guide though.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Oct 2009   #3

Windows 8.1 Pro (x64)
 
 

Instead of going though all that...why not setup the drive before installing Windows. No more 100 MB system reserved partition...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


24 Oct 2009   #4

XP, Seven, 2008R2
 
 

True, but I'm pretty sure this method is to be used after the fact.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Oct 2009   #5

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by logicearth View Post
Instead of going though all that...why not setup the drive before installing Windows. No more 100 MB system reserved partition...

Hi there
not very easy if you've got say 500 GB of USER DATA already on the HDD such as Music, Pictures, presentations, spreadsheets, video etc. You don't always have an empty disk to install the OS from or a spare 500 GB HDD to back the stuff up to while doing the Windows 7 install.

(If you've got an empty disk then no problem - my guide was for those cases where you haven't got an empty disk to start with).

Also in order to use the diskpart or bcdboot commands you actually have to have a system to issue these commands from in the first place -- remember the "unrepaired" OS won't boot so you need either the Windows install disk or another OS to boot first.

Cheers
jimbo
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Oct 2009   #6

Windows 8.1 Pro (x64)
 
 

But you do not need an empty disk...just create the partition before you select which to install Windows on. DISKPART doesn't require the disk to be empty.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Oct 2009   #7

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by logicearth View Post
But you do not need an empty disk...just create the partition before you select which to install Windows on. DISKPART doesn't require the disk to be empty.
Hi there
if the disk is not empty such as in the case outlined above where you already have a DATA partition then even if you create another primary partition - you'll find Windows 7 creates a 100MB system partition when it installs.

(I've done this enough times - if you don't get a 100MB partition then you are lucky).

You won't see it in Windows explorer but go into control panel==>administrative tools==>computer management==>disk management where if it exists you'll see it.

cheers
jimbo
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Oct 2009   #8

Windows 8.1 Pro (x64)
 
 

Create the partition though diskpart (SHIFT + F10 durning installation). do this before getting to the drive selection.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Oct 2009   #9

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by logicearth View Post
Create the partition though diskpart (SHIFT + F10 durning installation). do this before getting to the drive selection.

This will install of course on the partition -- BUT you'll STILL get a system 100MB partition in a number of cases.

Also if you HAVE a 100MB partition then all I'm saying is how to get rid of it. If you can avoid creating one in the first place then of course its better.

Cheers
jimbo
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Oct 2009   #10

Windows 8.1 Pro (x64)
 
 

Only get the System Reserved partition if you create partitions from the drive selection screen during installation. I do not have a System Reserved partition because I used diskpart to setup the partition that way.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Removing 100MB system partition - no re-install needed




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