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Windows 7: Windows 7 Install over fixmbr 10mb problem

11 Feb 2013   #1
Dan

Windows 7 Home Premium 32bit
 
 
Windows 7 Install over fixmbr 10mb problem

Hi, I recently had a problem booting my XP machine which eventually led me to trying fixmbr in the recovery console. This created a 10mb fat partition which appears to be empty, and left no access to any other partition. Having read many threads on that issue, I have no desire to try and recover my previous partition as I have everything backed up, and I had wanted to install windows 7 on the drive anyways. Is it possible to install windows 7 and format the drive in the process despite there only being "10mb" available on the disk? The drive is a 1TB Western Digital btw. Thanks!


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11 Feb 2013   #2
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64
 
 

Hello Dan Welcome to the Seven Forums!

Once you boot from the 7 dvd you can easily take care of the 10mb boot partition which holds the XP boot files apparently and would be useless for 7 anyways as well as simply nuke the entire drive. To do that you would enter the Repair tools link found below the Install Now button when first booting from the 7 installation media.

Once in the repair tools open the command prompt option and type the following commands in case more then hard drive is present to avoid any changes to a secondary storage drive. Note the commands are generally entered in lower case.

Disk Part = bring up built in partition manager

List Disk = lists all hard drives and any external HD or flash drives plugged in
Select Disk # = In case the OS drive is not seen as Disk 0 you may have to select Disk 1, Disk 2, Disk 3 when having two or more drives found to select the correct one.

Clean = that will clean all partitions off of the drive. The Clean All has to be used with care since entered in at the wrong time can see all drives wiped clean!

Create partition primary = will create one large single primary partition

Format FS=ntfs quick = This will perform a quick format of the drive.

Now note the other option once the drive is cleaned would be using the drive tools during the Win 7 install which will add a new 100mb System Reserved boot partition to a drive found without any existing partitions. The boot files and BCD store(Boot Configuration Data store boot folder) are placed on the separate 100mb partition and kept separate from the main C volume. The partition is hidden from view with a look at how it is present shown in the image here.



The image was captured while booted live in a Linux distro explaining the off amber color there.

For not seeing the 100mb System Reserved created at all you can create the new primary as explained above or use a 3rd party partitioning program. There are countless numbers of those both free and paid for to choose from. But the 100mb Fat will be gone and 7 will up and running in no time as 7 installs from dvd in 20 minutes! over the much longer install time typically seen with the older versions.

Besides booting from the 7 dvd to clean up the drive a 3rd party partitioning program can also clean up the drive using the gui approach. Then for seeing 7 installed another method besides booting from the 7 dvd is by way of creating a USB Installation Key with a 4gb or larger usb flash drive. A 4gb flash drive for the 32bit and larger for the 64bit Windows install. USB Windows 7 Installation Key Drive - Create
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11 Feb 2013   #3
gregrocker

 

If you don't need anything else on the HD then use the Custom install drive options from the booted Win7 installer to delete all partitions and create new ones as you wish before install. This is shown in Steps 6/7 of Clean Install Windows 7.

If you have data or want to save any partitions I'd label them ahead so you make sure not to delete them during install.
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11 Feb 2013   #4
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64
 
 

Some people do prefer the gui method over using the manual method at the command prompt. They may be a bit uncomfortable with manual commands and worried about making a mistake. Once you enter a manual command that's a final action. You can't simply undo one!

One thing to know however is that the 10mb of empty space is just that empty unallocated drive space since you have a Basic volume in use with Windows. The empty space is found on any Windows drive to allow conversion from Basic to a Dynamic volume used mainly for server application. generally that space is usually only 4-6mb and at times with XP on older systems you might only see 1mb of empty space. That doesn't represent the actual amount of usable drive space however only the drive space reserved for changing one type of volume to the other.
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13 Feb 2013   #5
Dan

Windows 7 Home Premium 32bit
 
 

Thanks Night Hawk for your very quick response and advice! The install went smoothly. At first the setup didn't see the hd, but then after following the instructions of a previous thread here on Seven Forums, it worked properly. Thanks again for your help.
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13 Feb 2013   #6
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64
 
 

Good for you! I'm glad things went well on your first next try.

If you ever add a spare drive sometime for storage before adding any files that would be a good time to try practicing a few things without making any changes to the main drive. That will be a large help in getting familiar with drive partitioning in general which will always come in handy.
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 Windows 7 Install over fixmbr 10mb problem




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