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Windows 7: Partition clearance for clean REinstall of Linux (w/ EasyBCD question)

07 Jul 2014   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-bit
Partition clearance for clean REinstall of Linux (w/ EasyBCD question)

As a newbie and using EasyBCD, I had problem-free success creating dual boot unit four months ago. But I never much used Mint 16 and wish to do clean install of LTS Qiana 17.

There is no findable guidance for folks that want to do a Clean REinstall of Linux (Mint) in a Windows 7 dual-boot situation...especially for those who have the Grub2 boatloader placed in Linux Root.

GOAL: Clean dual boot install of Linux (Mint 17) in place of never-modified Mint 16 (no data or mods to care about or preserve)


- Non-UEFI laptop with Windows 7
- Current partitions: Win7 / Data [NTFS] / Small Fat32 / Linux LOGICALS (3): ROOT + SWAP + HOME
- Bootloader is currently in Linux Root (wish to keep it that way)

Much of the following is newbie presumption based on common sense. Please correct or clarify at any point, thanks!


I think #1.) concerning EasyBCD might be a non-issue. My key interest is getting guidance and help on 2.) farther below...

1.) Preferred sequence of the following 2 actions. Does in matter?

a.) Wipe Linux partitions via "Delete Volume" in Windows Disk Management.
b.) Use EasyBCD to clear the Linux boatloader entry **

** I am blindly presuming b.) is required (common sense without experience) but for a while I was wondering if clearing the Linux bootloader entry could be skipped, meaning:

"Could it be that if you don't touch EasyBCD when doing reinstall of LINUX, the old Linux pointer in the MBR might still find/see/pick-up the *New* installation [?]."

Probably not but was wondering. Probably need to use EasyBCD again to install bootloader to Linux Root (my preference in lieu of installing Grub to MBR).



What I think:

A.) Do "Delete Volume" on each of the three Logical partitions resulting in display of "Free Space" blank partitions (3) with light green borders in Disk Management (Win7).

THEN STOP (I think)...and move to Mint installer. No interest in modifying standing partition sizes.

==> At this level, I assume (Help!) each of Logical partitions (in "Free Space" state) will be reassignable as ROOT/SWAP/HOME when using the Mint installer.

I am understanding "Free Space" as a bare bones Partition - a blank room - and still being a partition - but ready for reassignment to a filesystem type. Is that a good way to think of it?

Also, I think the previously existing SWAP space doesn't need to be touched in Disk Management as part of the clean re-install process, right? That means I would be doing a "Delete Volume" so as to clear out only ROOT and HOME.

(I know to expect to use the manual/advanced option in the Mint installer.)


B.) Continue "deeper" and do "Delete Volume" on the three blank "Free Space" logical partitions, returning them to "Unallocated Space."

Is it necessary to go as far as B. especially if I plan to reactivate them - with no changes in SIZES - in the new clean Linux install?

Can I just re-dedicate them in the Mint installer while they each have earlier status as "Free Space" in A. above?

Kind thanks in advance,

My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Jul 2014   #2

Windows 10 Pro x64

Dual Boot - Windows 7 and Linux

If you do not use Linux much, then consider just booting it off a flash drive when you do wanna use it
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Jul 2014   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64

Can I just re-dedicate them in the Mint installer while they each have earlier status as "Free Space" in A. above?
That should work fine. Youi can delete all 3 if you like as in B, might as well start clean

If you want to use windows boot manager, you can install grub to Linux partition. Boot into windows, pop this into C:\boot folder.

Then create a bcd entry to point at it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

07 Jul 2014   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-bit

AddRAM, thanks for response. I do wish to use Linux frequently on the laptop. Especially seeking to learn to use Git version control software under Linux. And this is helping me with my Windows and Linux installation skills.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Jul 2014   #5

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-bit

SIW2: "That should work fine. You can delete all 3 if you like as in B, might as well start clean."

Good thought...I was possibly getting myself too far down in the weeds because I didn't want to recompute and recreate the semi-exact original partition sizes. Hence the desire to retain original partition sizes as they were.

Wiping it all and doing from start wouldn't be terrible. I'll keep this thread open for a while longer.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Partition clearance for clean REinstall of Linux (w/ EasyBCD question)

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