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Windows 7: I'm trying to delete Win7 off of my old drive that is now a secondary

19 Mar 2014   #1

Windows 7 64 bit
I'm trying to delete Win7 off of my old drive that is now a secondary

I got an SSD "C" drive and am using the old drive "G" as a back up. "G" still has a copy of Windows on it that I don't need, plus the protected system reserved partition.

It won't let me delete any Windows files on "G" due to Trusted Installer.

I tried taking ownership but that didn't work. I'm admin by default, we have no icons to click on to open windows. I wanted to do that then just merge the partitions into one to create a basic back up internal Platter HDD.

When I installed the "C" SSD drive , I moved My docs, My Music, My Pictures, My Videos to the "G" drive as recommended by Properties/location/ change to "c". under "user" on "C".

Can I change those locations back to my SSD drive temporarily until I wipe the "G" drive, and if I do, will the files follow? If that works, then I can just reformat my drive into one logical internal back up drive. But I don't know if that will work.

Or as a plan "B", how do I delete the protected files, then take care of the partitions later.

So in review:
Issue #1 - somehow get authority to delete windows files, them clean up the hdd without wiping.
Issue #2 - move my docs, my photo, my video, my music, back to "C" (ssd) without creating a problem like lost files.

I need the space to do a Windows image because I'm having issues with my Seagate portable backup drive.

SSD = 240G Crucial M500
Secondary in question = 140G or so Western Digital platter

I hope this is making sense.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2014   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit

Was the HDD disconnected when you installed Windows to the SSD?

Can you post a screen shot of Windows Disk Management?

I assume your personal data files are on the HDD and have never been on the SSD?

I assume that the current G drive used to be C?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2014   #3

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

Partition Wizard will let you format it, but first you have to mark it inactive.

Are you now booting from the ssd with the old hard drive unplugged ? ( This is important )

Get your personal data off the hard drive before you even think about formatting it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

20 Mar 2014   #4
Microsoft MVP


The correct way to delete an old OS is to delete its partition in Disk Mgmt. But you wont' be able to do this until you move the shell User folders back to C, and if necessary also move the System boot files to C if G wasn't properly unplugged when you installed Win7 to C.

To help determine this with certainty, please post back a screenshot of Disk Management - Post a Screen Capture Image .

Meanwhile you can return to C the User Folders - Restore Default Location - Windows 7 Forums. Note that you'll be asked if you want to also move your files back to C, but if you don't have the space you can select to not do this, then back up your files by dragging each User folder (once it's shell is moved back to C) from G to your external backup or another HD. This is always the easiest way to back up files.

Once we see the screenshot we can give you any other steps that will be necessary to clear G so it can be correctly deleted and then recreated as a data partition if that is what you want.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2014   #5

Windows 7 64 bit

Attached is a screen shot. I'm running on the SSD.

1 - I installed Win7 on the SSD standing alone, with the Platter drive disconnected.
2 - "G" platter used to be my Windows 7 drive.
3 - Files were never on "C" ssd. I moved them after installation was done and all was well.
4 - I can boot from the SSD with the platter disconnected - and I have accidentally booted from the platter to my old O/S.
5 - I'm leaning toward the "Restore default location" solution. I have the space on "C" ssd. Then I can just use my bootable Minitool Partition Magic, and do partition deletes and re-formats. Or any other free one you can recommend...
5.5 - EDIT - I noticed I can go to the the My docs, etc. folder on "G", right click properties/location/ Restore default. I think that is the ticket, but I'll hold until for responses.

Attached Thumbnails
I'm trying to delete Win7 off of my old drive that is now a secondary-disk-mangement-screen-shot.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2014   #6
Microsoft MVP


If possible I'd swap the cables between the two drives so that the SSD is in DISK0 position. This way if you do Startup Repairs or Reinstall the System boot files cannot be derailed to a preceding Primary partition as we see here fairly often.

The picture shows us that the SSD System Reserved partition is booting both OS's, as signified by the System label being only on it.

I would go ahead and restore default location of each User folder allowing it to copy files back to C. You must have not noticed that the blue links are illustrated tutorials showing how to do each step I gave you: User Folders - Restore Default Location - Windows 7 Forums

Then mark E Inactive so it will allow you to delete it, G and the empty D in Disk Mgmt which can perform these tasks. Note that to fully delete D you'll need to first Delete Volume and then Delete partition to get rid of the Logical container. You can then repartition the drive as you please using Disk Mgmt.
Partition or Volume - Delete
Partition or Volume - Create New

You can then either move the User folders to the new storage drive, or just copy each one there and then rightclick to add it to the related Library, setting that folder as the default Save location. This will allow you to use Windows imaging without being force to include the data drive as a System partition: Library - Include a Folder - Windows 7 Forums
Library - Set Save Folder - Windows 7 Help Forums
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2014   #7

Windows 7 64 bit

I'll be doing the file swap by changing location. After that, it won't matter what port the SSD is plugged into, will it?

Probably in a few days. I'll get back to you if I have problems.

BTW, my board appears to treat all the sata ports the same. There is nothing indicating the boot drive should be inserted into "plug x".
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2014   #8

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64

Not sure what you are trying to do.

If you want to delete the old os files from the partition, but leave everything else on there, the easiest way is to use winpe. I have a special file driver in winpe which ignores permissions, so anything can be deleted.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Mar 2014   #9

Windows 7 64 bit

I plan to move the My Documents, My Photos, My Music, My Videos files back to the ssd, by changing the location in My Document / properties / location / back to "C" ssd.

Then I will wipe and un-partition my "G" platter drive, then move them back to the clean "G" drive.

I hope to accomplish this this weekend.

This is by far the best forum I've been on, BTW.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Mar 2014   #10
Microsoft MVP


To wipe the HD of all code, run Diskpart Clean Command
on it from C or System Recovery Options Command Line.

Then you can create new partition(s) as desired in Disk Mgmt from the tutorials I provided earlier.

By swapping the drive cables you can move the SSD to DISK0 position which is safer, since you said that all ports provide the same performance.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 I'm trying to delete Win7 off of my old drive that is now a secondary

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