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Windows 7: Removing the active partition in a dual boot setup


08 Mar 2010   #1

 
 
Removing the active partition in a dual boot setup

My single hard drive has 1 primary partition and 3 logical drives in the extended partition.

The primary partition had XP installed on it and is obviously the Active partition(got drive letter C).
I then installed 7 on one of the logical drives.(got drive letter D).

The boot loader(I am assuming) is probably on the Active partition.

I am trying to delete the primary partition as I dont need the XP any longer --to claim some space on the drive.

What's the easiest way to accomplish this?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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08 Mar 2010   #2

Windows 7 x64
 
 

It appears you know the primary partition is active and the boot files are there. Since you cannot make a logical partition active, then it should follow you need to make another partition primary to be able to make it active.

You can use Partition Wizard to make a logical partition a primary partition. I will assume you will choose the Win 7 partition. You can then make it active and run the Win 7 Startup Repair 2 or 3 times to get Win 7 to boot from it.

After that, moving or resizing partitions can be done with Partition Wizard, but be aware it can be risky, so back up.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Mar 2010   #3

 
 

I undestand the part about making another primary partition(or converting the existing logical partition to primary).

Once that new partition has been marked active--wont that disable the current XP on C partition from being active? and hence not booting with it? and subsequently available for me to delete?

Why does the repair CD come into play and what exactly is it doing?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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08 Mar 2010   #4

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kktk View Post
I undestand the part about making another primary partition(or converting the existing logical partition to primary).

Once that new partition has been marked active--wont that disable the current XP on C partition from being active? and hence not booting with it? and subsequently available for me to delete?

Why does the repair CD come into play and what exactly is it doing?
Hello kktk, and welcome to Windows Seven Forums.

A second option you might consider is to convert your current "Primary" "Active" partition to the 100MB "System Reserved" partition and you will not need to alter any of your logical partitions.

Please check out this link? http://www.sevenforums.com/installat...ndows-7-a.html

Cheers!
Robert
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Mar 2010   #5

 
 

hmmm logically both answers seem to make sense---although I am leaning towards the link referenced in the last note---mainly because there are detailed instructions for me to follow

Logically speaking---why(or how) are the 2 solutions mentioned above different from one another?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Mar 2010   #6

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kktk View Post
hmmm logically both answers seem to make sense---although I am leaning towards the link referenced in the last note---mainly because there are detailed instructions for me to follow

Logically speaking---why(or how) are the 2 solutions mentioned above different from one another?
Either way will work, both have risks.

The 100MB "System Reserved" partition used as a boot partition was introduced with Vista (it was 200MB then, I think). Windows 7 was designed to use the separate boot partition, however you can get along without it. One advantage is your boor code is protected in a separate "System" partition. Otherwise your boot code goes to the first "Active" partition, in your case, into your new "Primary" "Active" partition that you would have to create (or convert from a logical partition).

To turn your current XP partition into the "System Reserved" you would use the Disk Management Utility in Windows 7. You would delete the XP partition, create a 100MB partition in its place (and leave the empty space for the moment) and mark the new partition "Active". The Windows 7 install DVD will run its "Startup Repair" for you and complete the process of making your new boot partition work (we sometimes have to repeat the process 3 times to complete all the repairs). Then you would need a third party utility like the free Partition Wizard to extend first your "Extended Partition" into the empty space left by XP, then the Windows 7 partition into the empty space. The risk here is that moving the data in a partition like this can, on rare occasions, corrupt the data. For example if there was a power outage and your computer shuts down in the middle of the move. So with either choice, backup, backup, backup!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Mar 2010   #7

 
 

So, in either solution, a new system reserved partition is being created?
This is where the bootmgr lives?---and going forward we need to keep this new partition?
If so, does this new system reserved partition land up being the primary and active partition on the harddrive?

Also, the bootmgr cannot be on the same partition as Windows 7 anymore?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Mar 2010   #8

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kktk View Post
So, in either solution, a new system reserved partition is being created?
This is where the bootmgr lives?---and going forward we need to keep this new partition?
If so, does this new system reserved partition land up being the primary and active partition on the harddrive?

Also, the bootmgr cannot be on the same partition as Windows 7 anymore?
There must be a "Primary" partition. Windows will not boot FROM a logical partition. When you delete XP, you will be deleting the only "Primary" partition on your system. You will have to have a "Primary" partition. Saltgrass suggested you make your current Windows 7 partition a "Primary" partition, and place it where XP is now, outside the Extended partition and the logical partitions. The risks there are similar. You will either convert the current partition from logical to primary, or move the data from the logical partition to a "Primary" partition you create. Moving the data in this way has much the same risk. Therefore backup, backup, backup.

The difference will be whether the "System Reserved" partition is the only "Primary" partition on your system and acting as the boot partition (there is no problem booting TO a logical partition) or whether you will have your Windows 7 partition as your only "Primary" partition (with all of your boot code there).

In my opinion, there are less steps to creating the 100MB boot partition and extending into the empty space (and possibly less risk) than converting or moving the Windows 7 data from logical to primary. But in the end the choice is yours and we will assist you however we can either way you decide to go.

Cheers!
Robert
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Mar 2010   #9

 
 

Thanks..I understand better---let me go and try this today.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Mar 2010   #10

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kktk View Post
Thanks..I understand better---let me go and try this today.
OK ... let us know how it turns out!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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