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Windows 7: system reserved partition on second drive

11 Jul 2010   #1

MS Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit SP1
 
 
system reserved partition on second drive

My computer came with a 1TB drive pre-installed with windows 7 home premium and no windows install disk. I immediately created the system restore dvd's so at least I have a default copy of windows.

From past experience I prefer to have a smaller drive with windows (which i loaded from the restore disks) and the 1TB as a second drive to hold all my files. Now I see I have a system reserved drive listed which I didn't have before, presumably a partition on the 1TB. Before I do anything stupid I just have a few questions.

Can the system reserved partition even be accessed for an emergency reinstall if it is on the second drive?

Is it unwise to delete the partition if I don't have the original windows 7 boot cd? I do however have the system restore dvd's which seem to work fine.

Can I reformat the entire 1TB drive, or must I delete the partition first?

If I keep the partition, how can I hide it. Traditional means don't seem to work.


I appreciate any help. Thanks.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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11 Jul 2010   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

You can certainly reformat the 1 TB and get the system reserved partition off of it. You may have to use diskpart to do get rid of it.

If you have retail install discs, you don't need the system restore partition anyway--but your situation with only restore discs might be a different situation.

I'd guess you don't need the reserved partition since you have the restore discs, but I'd wait for more detailed comment.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Jul 2010   #3
Microsoft MVP

 

Recovery disks should reinstall the SysReserved partition since it holds the boot-critical files. If you dont' want it then we can help you remove it by marking Windows 7 partition active, then booting the Repair CD to run Startup Repair up to 3 separate times with reboots to write the System MBR into the Windows 7 partition. System Repair Disc - Create
Partition - Mark as Active
Startup Repair

Be sure to run the recovery with the 1tb unplugged so it doesn't interfere.

Once you have the new Windows 7 HD up and runnning, you can plug the 1tb back in and Clean it using DISKPART from the Repair CD command line: Disk - Clean and Clean All with Diskpart Command

Here is a new video from 7forums on how to move your User folders to a second HD partition to free up space and take advantage of faster reads from a second laser: Data Partition

And our tutorial: User Folders - Change Default Location
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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11 Jul 2010   #4

MS Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit SP1
 
 

Thanks for the help.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Jul 2010   #5
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate
 
 

Hello spitemonkey, welcome to Seven Forums!



Here is another very useful tutorial that will show you how to create and partition the drive during the install, at the link below.


SSD / HDD : Optimize for Windows Reinstallation
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Jul 2010   #6

MS Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit SP1
 
 

Thanks for the info. From everything I've read I went the easiest route for me. I used disk management to hide the 100Mb partition on the 1Tb drive. I figure It's small enough not to be bothered with as long as I don't have to see it, and I can always use it as an emergency backup of windows if all else fails. I then reformatted the much larger partition. Works for me. Thanks again.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jul 2010   #7
Microsoft MVP

 

So which partition is booting your new Windows 7 on the smaller drive? How is performance?

Check which partition has "System Active" listing in Disk Management, or post back a Screenshot of the full Disk Mgmt drive map and listings using Snipping Tool in Start Menu.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jul 2010   #8

MS Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit SP1
 
 

I installed windows 7 on an 80Gb Seagate Barracuda 7200 drive from my restore DVD's without the other drive connected. Windows seems to work fine and I haven't noticed any change in performance. 80Gb might have been too small but I can always mirror the drive and put it on a larger one later if I need.

The second 1Tb drive seems to have 3 partitions: A recovery partition of 15Gb, a system reserved of 100Mb and the large main partition which I formatted over the old copy of windows.

I hid the system reserved and I'm not quite sure what the recovery partition is for or if I need it.

I kind of like the idea of having a backup of the base windows kept on the 1Tb, but I'm not exactly sure how to access it. I assume I would have to disconnect the 80Gb drive and reboot into a recovery mode to reinstall windows back onto the 1Tb. But that is all mute if I don't lose the recovery DVD's.

I was thinking I could still reformat the entire 1Tb and use something like Paragon to mirror the 80Gb onto it. What do you think is my best move?


Attached Thumbnails
system reserved partition on second drive-capture.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jul 2010   #9
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Bare Foot Kid View Post
Hello spitemonkey, welcome to Seven Forums!



Here is another very useful tutorial that will show you how to create and partition the drive during the install, at the link below.


SSD / HDD : Optimize for Windows Reinstallation


If you wanted to wipe and re-install, you could use this, at Step Three to create a specific size partition you would enter it like this ...

"create partition primary 102400MB" <enter> you need to enter the size of the partition you want in MBs. you would do this for each partition you wanted to create.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jul 2010   #10
Microsoft MVP

 

If you have the Recovery Disks and know they work, then you can delete the Recovery partition which probably won't run anyway.

I would wipe the 1tb drive to use as you planned for a Data and backup partition, storing your linked User folders there using tutorial I posted earlier, and a Windows 7 backup image of your System drive which will be more useful for recovery than the disks anyway: Backup Complete Computer - Create an Image Backup

You have a potential complication there with the 100mb Sys Reserved partition on the 1tb which you mistakenly thought you were backing up by keeping - it is only functional as installed with Windows 7 and now holds a second Active flag which could derail your new System drive boot if a Repair is run. So it needs to be wiped along with the 1tb.

But first, I would unplug it to make sure Windows 7 will boot without it. If not we need to fully recover the MBR to the 80gb SysReserved.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 system reserved partition on second drive





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