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Windows 7: WIN partition divides my HDD

25 Sep 2014   #11
MajorG

Win 7 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by dsperber View Post
One more option...

From the same people who provide EasyBCD they provide another product named EasyRE. It's not free, but it's very modestly priced.

EasyRE (which I have not used myself, so I can't vouch for it) is like the Windows Repair mechanism in that it's designed to do the repair needed to get your machine bootable again. This would no doubt include recreating the Boot Manager partition as ACTIVE, if you'd lost it, etc.

My guess is that just as GUI-based EasyBCD is FAR simpler to use than the Windows BCD utility to accomplish the same goals, I'd bet EasyRE is much more intuitive and easy to use than the similar Windows Repair mechanism.

Just a thought, if you have to go to this "repair" step to get your machine bootable again (i.e. if your deletion of D on drive #1 was actually the unfortunate and inappropriate deletion of the 100MB ACTIVE "system reserved" partition).
Me deleting D and E drives has nothing to do with this.
I rebooted and even switched between my OS'es a few times after the deletion. Everything was fine.

When I had the boot trouble, I booted into the minitools bootable cd again and tried making the Win partition "Active". But neither worked. It just said something like "No windows folder was found", although I could see there was a windows folder.

It's just a weird problem.. Somehow minitools f@#ed my system for no reason.

Anyhow, windows repair fixed everthing so it's all fine now.
I will reconsider keeping my old win partition. Caused me enough headache for today.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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25 Sep 2014   #12
dsperber

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 (2)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by MajorG View Post
Umm.. I just re-installed windows on an unallocated partition just to see everything was fine.

Then I restarted my PC and booted to the WIN DVD. A repair was suggested. I accepted the repair and both my OS'es were recovered.

So.. all fine now.

What I meant earlier is that I didn't do any actions in minitools.

I burned the minitools bootable cd and booted into it. No actions were done inside the software.
Just a simple boot.
After it booted to minitools I restarted my PC because I realized I forgot to backup something.
And... that's pretty much it.. After the restart I couldn't boot into either of my drives..
Well I certainly don't know why you suddenly couldn't re-boot from either of your two drives using the identical approach you probably had been successfully using previously, just because you had booted to the Partition Wizard CD and then exited the program... which would of course do nothing at all to your partitions. So this should not have impacted whatever hard drive boot capability you previously had.

Anyway, it sounds like you have now repaired things (using the third installed Windows), but still have the first Windows on drive #1 not positioned where you want it. Is there now a boot manager menu that lists THREE bootable versions of Windows??

Are you going to slide the original Windows on drive #1 left as you described your original goal when starting this thread, using Partition Wizard? Note that you can do this while booted to either of the other two Windows and using the installed Partition Wizard in either of those two Windows systems. You don't have to use the standalone boot CD to accomplish this slide-left of the first Windows on drive #1. You only should use the standalone boot CD to make changes to the Windows partition itself you are running from, and which can't be done while running under that Windows itself. But when you're running from a second or third Windows partition, you can now do maintenance on a currently unused Windows partition while running in the second or third Windows system itself.


I'm not trying to confuse things, but I'd still like to see a screenshot of your two hard drives as shown either by Partition Wizard or DISKMGMT.MSC. If you use DISKMGMT.MSC, please expand to full-screen and spread the column dividers in the upper pane so that we can read all the English text in the cells.

I'm still wanting to see WHICH partition is marked "active", and what's in each of your partitions... as viewed from whichever of your now THREE versions of Windows you must be running from.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Sep 2014   #13
dsperber

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 (2)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by MajorG View Post
Me deleting D and E drives has nothing to do with this.
I rebooted and even switched between my OS'es a few times after the deletion. Everything was fine.
You still have not described how you do this. Is it through Boot Manager that shows all of your choosable bootable Windows versions and you navigate with the arrow keys and press ENTER? Or is it manual selection of boot drive through BIOS or SETUP machine override??

This is very important to understanding what your previous environment was.


Quote:
When I had the boot trouble, I booted into the minitools bootable cd again and tried making the Win partition "Active".
When was this? The first time you used PW you said you just exited immediately, because you "forgot to back something up".

But now you tried making the Win partition "active"? I have stated earlier that ACTIVE is where Boot Manager must reside, and ordinarily that is not in any Windows partition. It is normally in a separate small "system reserved" partition, although technically there is no reason that Boot Manager can't actually be located in a Windows partition itself.

In fact, that's what "repair" does... it installs the currently missing Boot Manager files (and menu) into the Windows system partition and then marks it ACTIVE. Thus now Windows and Boot Manager both reside in the one C-partition (this is actually how the old WinXP used to operate, before MS changed the Win7 installer to create a separate small ACTIVE "system reserved" partition just to hold Boot Manager).


Quote:
But neither worked. It just said something like "No windows folder was found", although I could see there was a windows folder.

It's just a weird problem.. Somehow minitools f@#ed my system for no reason.
In all the many uses of Partition Wizard, I've never heard any reports of symptoms like you describe. And I've never known it to do ANYTHING to any partition if (a) you didn't push APPLY, and (b) certainly not if it reported some error and could not complete the requested operation(s) sequence.


Quote:
Anyhow, windows repair fixed everthing so it's all fine now.
As I mentioned previously, Windows Repair will do just what you clearly needed... namely (a) restore Boot Manager into a partition, and (b) mark that partition as ACTIVE. Most likely one of your three Windows partitions was selected and now shows up as ACTIVE (if you post the requested screenshot of your disks, I'm sure all of these questions will instantly be answered by a single picture).


Quote:
I will reconsider keeping my old win partition. Caused me enough headache for today.
Now that your system is working (with three selectable Windows from Boot Manager menu list??), you're truly free to slide that original Windows partition on drive #1 to the left using PW... with no fear (at least that's my opinion).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

25 Sep 2014   #14
MajorG

Win 7 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by dsperber View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by MajorG View Post
Umm.. I just re-installed windows on an unallocated partition just to see everything was fine.

Then I restarted my PC and booted to the WIN DVD. A repair was suggested. I accepted the repair and both my OS'es were recovered.

So.. all fine now.

What I meant earlier is that I didn't do any actions in minitools.

I burned the minitools bootable cd and booted into it. No actions were done inside the software.
Just a simple boot.
After it booted to minitools I restarted my PC because I realized I forgot to backup something.
And... that's pretty much it.. After the restart I couldn't boot into either of my drives..
Well I certainly don't know why you suddenly couldn't re-boot from either of your two drives using the identical approach you probably had been successfully using previously, just because you had booted to the Partition Wizard CD and then exited the program... which would of course do nothing at all to your partitions. So this should not have impacted whatever hard drive boot capability you previously had.

Anyway, it sounds like you have now repaired things (using the third installed Windows), but still have the first Windows on drive #1 not positioned where you want it. Is there now a boot manager menu that lists THREE bootable versions of Windows??

Are you going to slide the original Windows on drive #1 left as you described your original goal when starting this thread, using Partition Wizard? Note that you can do this while booted to either of the other two Windows and using the installed Partition Wizard in either of those two Windows systems. You don't have to use the standalone boot CD to accomplish this slide-left of the first Windows on drive #1. You only should use the standalone boot CD to make changes to the Windows partition itself you are running from, and which can't be done while running under that Windows itself. But when you're running from a second or third Windows partition, you can now do maintenance on a currently unused Windows partition while running in the second or third Windows system itself.


I'm not trying to confuse things, but I'd still like to see a screenshot of your two hard drives as shown either by Partition Wizard or DISKMGMT.MSC. If you use DISKMGMT.MSC, please expand to full-screen and spread the column dividers in the upper pane so that we can read all the English text in the cells.

I'm still wanting to see WHICH partition is marked "active", and what's in each of your partitions... as viewed from whichever of your now THREE versions of Windows you must be running from.
Yes, I do have 3 showing on the boot menu.

I just used Acronis disk director to push my old OS so I could use all of my unallocated space. It worked perfectly fine.

My system is now like this:
HDD#0- C (Shown as "system" and a bunch of other stuff including "active")
A (Shown as "Main partition")
HDD#1-*unallocated space*
D (My old OS, shown as "Main partition")
E (The recent OS I installed a few minutes ago because of the problem. Shown too as "Main partition")

So.. Now I have a question..
Can I just delet the E partition in Disk manager? Or am I supposed to delet Windows partitions differently because they are sensitive or something?
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by dsperber View Post
.

Quote:
You still have not described how you do this. Is it through Boot Manager that shows all of your choosable bootable Windows versions and you navigate with the arrow keys and press ENTER? Or is it manual selection of boot drive through BIOS or SETUP machine override??

This is very important to understanding what your previous environment was.
Do what? Deleted the partitions or boot my different OS'es?
I have a choise on PC startup, which OS I want to boot to. Through BIOS.

Quote:
When was this? The first time you used PW you said you just exited immediately, because you "forgot to back something up".
Yes. I tried making a partition "Active" after the problem started. Not before.
I just had to try to see if it will make my system bootable again. But nothing helped.

Quote:
In all the many uses of Partition Wizard, I've never heard any reports of symptoms like you describe. And I've never known it to do ANYTHING to any partition if (a) you didn't push APPLY, and (b) certainly not if it reported some error and could not complete the requested operation(s) sequence.
No idea. I can swear I didn't do anything. Just purely booted that minitools cd and safely quited it. Nothing abnormal.

Quote:
As I mentioned previously, Windows Repair will do just what you clearly needed... namely (a) restore Boot Manager into a partition, and (b) mark that partition as ACTIVE. Most likely one of your three Windows partitions was selected and now shows up as ACTIVE (if you post the requested screenshot of your disks, I'm sure all of these questions will instantly be answered by a single picture).
My OS is in Hebew. I wrote above how it looks like in device manager
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Sep 2014   #15
dsperber

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 (2)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by MajorG View Post
My system is now like this:
HDD#0- C (Shown as "system" and a bunch of other stuff including "active")
A (Shown as "Main partition")
HDD#1-*unallocated space*
D (My old OS, shown as "Main partition")
E (The recent OS I installed a few minutes ago because of the problem. Shown too as "Main partition")
I'm sure the Windows Repair you did selected the first Windows system partition it found (i.e. your C on HDD#0), placed Boot Manager into it, and marked the partition as "active".

That's how you're now once again operating normally... and without requiring a 100MB un-lettered "system reserved" partition dedicated to just Boot Manager itself as is normally the case from fresh Win7 installs onto a new empty drive. As long as Boot Manager is present in the "active" partition, that's all that matters.


Quote:
So.. Now I have a question..
Can I just delete the E partition in Disk manager? Or am I supposed to delete Windows partitions differently because they are sensitive or something?
Assuming you are actually now running with Boot Manager, when you boot you should see something like the following example (which shows "Windows Boot Manager" across the top):



Technically this is NOT FROM THE BIOS... it is from Windows Boot Manager, which was kicked off by the BIOS going to the "active" partition on the first drive in the BIOS-configured boot sequence and then launching it using special information stored in the first sector on that "active" partition. This was made possible when you ran Windows Repair to correct whatever damage had previously been present, where all of this Boot Manager linkage was somehow damaged or corrupted... perhaps when you installed your second copy of Windows on your second hard drive.


Quote:
I have a choise on PC startup, which OS I want to boot to. Through BIOS.
If you see what I showed in the above screenshot, then technically this is NOT BIOS... it is Windows Boot Manager you're dealing with.

You use the arrow keys to navigate through the list (and you now probably see THREE versions of Windows, with your most recently installed third Windows pre-selected as the default which will be chosen if you don't navigate before pressing ENTER, or simply let the 10-30 seconds expire so that the default Windows gets launched automatically).


Anyway, you cannot just delete a Windows partition (i.e. the third Windows you just installed to get past these problems)... at least not without first removing it from the existing Boot Manager Menu.

Follow one of the several alternative methods described in this SevenForums Tutorial to properly remove your unwanted Windows from the Boot Manager Menu. Note that the aforementioned EasyBCD is also on this list of possible tools to use, and it's honestly the easiest way to delete the unwanted entry from the Menu list. But any of the described methods will work as well.

Once deleted, confirm that you can re-boot and your new Boot Manager Menu no longer shows the now deleted third unwanted Windows, and that you can select one of the remaining two Windows and boot successfully.

Once confirmed that you're now back to a two-Windows environment, you can use either Acronis or Partition Wizard to delete your unwanted Windows partition (or just FORMAT it, confirming you do want to erase it).

I'd recommend you also change the "LABEL" of your partitions, to something more useful or unique. Having them all named "main partition" or "system" is fairly ambiguous. I label my own partitions on my multiple hard drives with a composite of some abbreviation of manufacturer/model/capacity (e.g. WD750) for that drive followed by P1, P2, etc., for the partitions themselves. So WD750-P1, WD2000-P2, etc.. Doesn't have to be English words... can be any label you want, so why not keep it helpful if you have multiple partitions.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Sep 2014   #16
AddRAM

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64
 
 

If you want, when you get a chance, post a shot of disk management for us to look over.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Sep 2014   #17
MajorG

Win 7 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by dsperber View Post
.
Quote:
I'm sure the Windows Repair you did selected the first Windows system partition it found (i.e. your C on HDD#0), placed Boot Manager into it, and marked the partition as "active".
It actually repaired them both at once.

Quote:
Anyway, you cannot just delete a Windows partition (i.e. the third Windows you just installed to get past these problems)... at least not without first removing it from the existing Boot Manager Menu.
What happnes if I do just delet the partition?
Once, a few years ago, after installing a new windows on a new HDD, I just deleted the "Windows" folder itself. I dont remember any issues..

Quote:
I'd recommend you also change the "LABEL" of your partitions, to something more useful or unique. Having them all named "main partition" or "system" is fairly ambiguous. I label my own partitions on my multiple hard drives with a composite of some abbreviation of manufacturer/model/capacity (e.g. WD750) for that drive followed by P1, P2, etc., for the partitions themselves. So WD750-P1, WD2000-P2, etc.. Doesn't have to be English words... can be any label you want, so why not keep it helpful if you have multiple partitions.
I meant that it's shown as "Main partition" in Disk manager. The lable (you mean the name of the partition, right?) is not "Main partition".
Or did I missunderstand you?
What do you mean?
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AddRAM View Post
If you want, when you get a chance, post a shot of disk management for us to look over.
Alright, although I wrote how it is shown exactly.


EDIT:

I just used this EasyBCD thing.. Followed the tutorial.
And once again it f&$#!ed up the boot..

So I repaired it again and just used "option #1" from the tutorial, that uses built in system boot options in MSCONFIG and now it works. I no longer see the unwanted Win partition.

I swear I hate those software that handle sensitive things. They always seem to f@!ck up my system.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Sep 2014   #18
dsperber

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 (2)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by MajorG View Post
It actually repaired them both at once.

What happens if I do just delete the partition?
Once, a few years ago, after installing a new windows on a new HDD, I just deleted the "Windows" folder itself. I dont remember any issues..
There's an entry for the Windows partition you're wanting to delete in the Boot Manager menu. If you're going to delete the partition (thus making it impossible to select that Windows to boot to) then you also want to delete the entry in the Boot Manager menu. That's the only additional thing you should do. Otherwise, there's no problem deleting the partition.

That tutorial is exactly the procedure to use to remove the Boot Manager menu entry for the Windows partition you no longer want/need and am about to physically delete.


Quote:
I meant that it's shown as "Main partition" in Disk manager. The lable (you mean the name of the partition, right?) is not "Main partition".
Or did I missunderstand you?
What do you mean?
I mean to use the "LABEL" function for a partition (available in Partition Wizard, My Computer -> right-click on partition -> select General tab, enter "label" information, Acronis, etc.) to give it a "name" that is meaningful.

Here is my own 4-drive (plus external 2TB USB 3.0 drive, for backups) multi-partition setup. Note that all the partitions on one drive have the same prefix portion in their "label" that identifies the drive manufacturer and size (because that's interesting and unique), with a simple suffix of -P1, -P2, etc.




Quote:
EDIT:

I just used this EasyBCD thing.. Followed the tutorial.
And once again it f&$#!ed up the boot..
Don't know why you are having such problems, with software products that are highly recommended on this forum and have been used countless times to perform the identical tasks you're trying to accomplish... and with no reported problems.

You didn't describe exactly what the symptom was after using EasyBCD to simply delete an entry from the Boot Manager menu, but I can't imagine it doing anything problematic.

For example, if I wanted to delete my "Macrium Reflect System Recovery" entry in my Boot Manager menu, I'd simply push the "edit boot menu" button on the left, select the entry in the Boot Manager menu list that I wanted to delete in the right pane, and then push the "DELETE" toolbar button above that right pane. Then push "save settings", and I'm done.



Can't imagine you didn't follow the identical steps to delete your third (most recently installed) unwanted Windows. Did you remember that this was probably also marked as the DEFAULT item? In other words, if you delete the default boot menu item, one of the remaining two items (in your case) should then have been checked as the "default".

Anyway, unless you describe what subsequent boot problem you encountered, I really can't speculate on what might have been incorrect in the tutorial or what you might have done to get yourself in trouble. Certainly there's nothing wrong with the EasyBCD software product itself, based on LOTS of uses by many many others.


Quote:
So I repaired it again and just used "option #1" from the tutorial, that uses built in system boot options in MSCONFIG and now it works. I no longer see the unwanted Win partition.
Many ways to skin a cat. I would have used EasyBCD (as I have in the past) and not expected any surprises or resulting problems.


Quote:
I swear I hate those software that handle sensitive things. They always seem to f@!ck up my system.
Honestly can't understand your experience. Partition Wizard and EasyBCD are perhaps two of THE MOST HIGHLY REGARDED utilities recommended on this forum, for common everyday tasks that are exactly what these two programs are designed to perform easily and reliably.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Sep 2014   #19
MajorG

Win 7 64 bit
 
 

Quote:
I mean to use the "LABEL" function for a partition (available in Partition Wizard, My Computer -> right-click on partition -> select General tab, enter "label" information, Acronis, etc.) to give it a "name" that is meaningful.

Here is my own 4-drive multi-partition setup. Note that all the partitions on one drive have the same prefix portion in their "label" that identifies the drive manufacturer and size (because that's interesting and unique), with a simple suffix of -P1, -P2, etc.
Well.. I actually like it simple. Just a letter is fine by me.

Quote:
Don't know why you are having such problems, with software products that are highly recommended on this forum and have been used countless times to perform the identical tasks you're trying to accomplish... and with no reported problems.

You didn't describe exactly what the symptom was after using EasyBCD to simply delete an entry from the Boot Manager menu, but I can't imagine it doing anything problematic.

For example, if I wanted to delete my "Macrium Reflect System Recovery" entry in my Boot Manager menu, I'd simply push the "edit boot menu" button on the left, select the entry in the Boot Manager menu list that I wanted to delete in the right pane, and then push the "DELETE" toolbar button above that right pane. Then push "save settings", and I'm done.
No idea.. I just followed a simple procces. Nothing too complicated. And no, the defult was my middle Win, not the one I deleted.

Quote:
Many ways to skin a cat. I would have used EasyBCD (as I have in the past) and not expected any surprises or resulting problems.
Why use a third party software when you have it built in?
I really dont see why.
I rely more on built in functions if possible.

I used them both to give it a try. "Not for me" is my conclusion.





BTW, you sure have a lot of partitions. Why?
I really hated the fact I divided my single HDD to 4 partitions when I only got it like 5 years ago.
And I couldnt really do anything because I had too much data on each partition. So I couldn't just transfer data to another partition and combine them together.


I have a another two questions.

#1 What if I'd like to delet my old windows partition in the future (The one I am trying to keep as for now)?
I read that you can't delete the old Win partition because it may contain the boot files that my current system uses.

If in Disk manager I see that my current windows C drive is marked as System, Boot and Active while my old Windows drive is marked just as "Primary drive", is it fine deleting the old one?


#2 Is there anything I need to know about Logical drives, Extended drives, Primary drives and so on?
It is really confussing.
And I dont see any options considering these things in the built in Disk manager.


Thank you.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Sep 2014   #20
MajorG

Win 7 64 bit
 
 

Help?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
Reply

 WIN partition divides my HDD




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