Windows 7 Forums
Welcome to Windows 7 Forums. Our forum is dedicated to helping you find support and solutions for any problems regarding your Windows 7 PC be it Dell, HP, Acer, Asus or a custom build. We also provide an extensive Windows 7 tutorial section that covers a wide range of tips and tricks.

Windows 7: Should I delete legacy Recovery drive?

24 Oct 2009   #1

Should I delete legacy Recovery drive?

I am planning to perform a clean install of Win7 on my Dell Vista PC (as I understand this is better in the long term than an upgrade).

My PC has a 10GB D: drive, which it came installed with, 'Recovery'. Is this something I should delete/format as part of the Win7 upgrade process (and will I get invited to create anew one?), or I should I just leave it be? Apologies if this is a simple question/answer, but I'm a bit snowed under with children today and I don't have time for Google and 'due diligence'!

thanks in advance

My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Oct 2009   #2

Windows 10 Pro x64 x3, Ubuntu

Hi Toby,

This is a question that only you can answer. You will not be asked to create a new one unless the install media is from Dell and they add this function, (I've never heard of this by the way).

Do you have Bootable recovery disks from Dell for your previous OS? If so then the recovery partition is not needed anyway.

As you are doing a clean install it will be probable that any Dell software to start recovery will be lost when Windows 7 Re-writes the boot sector and will not be part of the standard Microsoft functionality included with windows.

It is possible to start the recovery operation by making the partition active and booting the system but this can be a bit involved.

The decision you have to make is how likely are you to revert to your previous system. if this is not very likely then the partition can be removed to regain the space - if you are not short of space does ithe 10GB matter.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Oct 2009   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


Hi Toby and welcome to the SevenForums.

The recovery partition contains data to restore your computer back to the factory defaults, i.e. to install original OS (Vista?) and the drivers and bundled software back to your computer. After restoring the computer to the factory defaults it is like it was the day you bought it.

I recommend you first install the Seven and use some time before deciding if you want to delete the recovery partition. It's up to you: if you are sure you are never going to need to restore your computer to factory defaults, delete it. If you are not sure, keep it until you are.

I don't know Dell so well; some computers have an option to burn the recovery data to CD's or DVD's. You could try to find out if you have this option. If yes, burn the recovery disks and then delete the partition.

Good luck, whatever you decide.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

24 Oct 2009   #4


I can spare 10GB so I'll just leave it be for now. Thank you both!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Oct 2009   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


You are welcome, Toby. As always with computers this is one of those issues where it is better to be safe than sorry.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Mar 2010   #6

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 32-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
Besure you choose Custom / Custom Install

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by TobyR View Post
I can spare 10GB so I'll just leave it be for now. Thank you both!
Toby, even as a 32 year computer veteran, I found the first install/upgrade from Vista and XP to be strange. It says in the documentation that you have to choose a custom installation to get a "clean" install. However, you must choose the custom install option TWICE if you want to format the drive. It does not explicitly state this, and according to MS, was designed to prevent unknowing users from formatting their HD. If you do not format the HD, it wll also create a Windows.old folder with all of your old files and settings in it, even though you are advised to create backups. This is also to prevent the novice user from losing data.

Good luck and format that drive; clean baby, clean!

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Should I delete legacy Recovery drive?

Thread Tools

Similar help and support threads
Thread Forum
Trying to delete legacy Windows Vista folders
Hi all - installed a new hard drive and installed Win7 as a new install (3+ years ago). Previously ran Vista on the C: drive. New Win7 drive partition/volume is M: - system set to dual boot, although I haven't booted to Vista in +3 years. I'd like to recover the space on my C: drive where Vista was...
General Discussion
delete legacy key win7pro
I started with the top of the hive and when through each one giving everybody 'full control'. Still can not delete legacy key.
General Discussion
Recovery Drive (D: ) is full - what can I delete?
I have backed up my data and I want to set my computer back to factory default setting, including Recovery Drive. My recovery drive is full. It has the capacity of 18.57 GB and has only 179 MB of free space. When I start my computer, I get a black and white screen saying "Windows Boot...
Performance & Maintenance
can't delete drive coz in drive option ,delete and new button inactive
Hi ieeuu, I got one problem, when i reboot (or restart) my computer and boot from the DVD and then begin the Installation to install new window, in the drive option, I can't delete and create new partitions, the delete and create new button are all turn gray colour (inactive). Inside the...
Installation & Setup
need to delete OS off recovery drive!
Please help; I'm at my wits' end here... I did the same thing this fellow did on this thread (accidentally installed a version of Windows 7 onto the recovery drive): And I thought I had found...
Backup and Restore

Our Sites

Site Links

About Us

Find Us

Windows 7 Forums is an independent web site and has not been authorized, sponsored, or otherwise approved by Microsoft Corporation. "Windows 7" and related materials are trademarks of Microsoft Corp.

Designer Media Ltd

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 18:46.
Twitter Facebook Google+