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Windows 7: 100mb Partition - Deleted

22 May 2015   #1
cray claw

Win 7 Home Prem
100mb Partition - Deleted

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
A 100MB active boot partition is present on many Windows7 installations. This partition is needed to boot the system since it contains the MBR (Master Boot Record). Normally the content of this partition does not change. I therefore image it only with the initial image and keep it in the folder with the initial image (in a separate subfolder).
Should you, however, later add another operating system in double boot mode, you need to reimage this 100MB partition because its content has changed. I suggest you store it in a separate subfolder with the initial image. If you later decide to delete this second operating system, you need only restore the initial image of the 100MB partition and you have no trace of the second OS.
Special attention has to be given to the restore process of the OS partition if you have a separate 100MB active boot partition. You must not mark the OS partition as “active” during the restore process nor must you restore the MBR.

Hi there,

I was reading a topic on Imaging Strategies in the BackUp & Restore section of this forum and noticed this above.

I have deleted this small partition off my computer -
Asus EB1501 Intel Atom 330 / 1.6 GHz / Dual Core / 2gb RAM / 250gb HDD / Win 7 Home Prem.

My system boots up with no problem but I suspect that the Recovery Partition that is in place has now been rendered useless. Would that be correct?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 May 2015   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit

If you deleted System Reserved and can still boot, then your boot files weren't on it.

Where are they? Possibly on the recovery partition---which would mean it is functioning in some sense.

I've never used a recovery partition but know that they can be dodgy and useless for recovery purposes in some situations.

Can you at least bring up the menu on which recovery is offered as a choice?

Might be a good idea to post a screen shot of Windows Disk Management so we can see the location of your boot files.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 May 2015   #3
cray claw

Win 7 Home Prem

Thanks for the quick reply.

Within the Recovery Partition there is a BOOT folder and a BOOTMGR file.
Within C:/Windows there is a Boot folder with 3 sub folders 1. DVD, 2. Fonts, 3. PCAT - total size 17.4mb.
Within the PCAT folder is also a bootmgr file.

I can't take a screenshot because the machine is not connected to the internet.

......Can I delete the Recovery Partition without fear of "system retribution" ??
My System SpecsSystem Spec

22 May 2015   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit

Well, looks like your boot files are in the recovery partition.

Can you take a pic of Disk Management with a phone camera and post that pic?

Have you attempted to even begin to try to use the recovery partition, by bringing up the menu or whatever you are supposed to do to use it?

If you delete the recovery partition, that thing isn't like to boot.

You should be able to copy the boot files to C using EasyBCD, a free tool. There 's a tutorial for it on this site. But you'll have to get it downloaded and run it some way.

Why delete it?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #5
cray claw

Win 7 Home Prem

Copy of disk management attached.

Sorry but you did ask .....Why deleted it?...... This all started off by me wanting to install a Linux OS as a dual boot alongside Win7 on this machine. I want to use it as a media pc but it's slow when streaming video and the Linux OS is faster. After messing around with partitions I somehow ended up converting the disk from Basic to Dymanic. Linux OS will not install on a Dynamic disk. To convert the disk back to basic I need to delete all the dynamic partitions to then convert the disk back to basic. After all this I will then need to restore my system and don't want to end up with a partition that may be of no use and just taking up space (seeing the 100mb partition was deleted as mentioned earlier).

I also know there are programs out there that claim to be able to convert disks from Dynamic to Basic without loss of data - but I don't have total faith in them. Therefore I also need to produce a system image to be able to restore the system if the proverbial hits the fan.

So I also will need to know whether to produce an image of the entire disk, only the recovery partition, only C:/ drive, or of C:/ plus Recovery.

And finally, because I don't have complete faith in backup & recovery software, I will want to know if the image I end up with is transportable so I can test it on another older machine I don't use anymore.

I tried to avoid bringing up all this dribble so as not to make this topic too confusing.

Attached Thumbnails
100mb Partition - Deleted-disk.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #6

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit


I note that your C partition is flagged as system. That means boot files are on C. They may be on recovery also, but they appear to be on C as well.

I have no idea if your recovery partition is functional.

If, I say if, your partitions were NOT dynamic, I would tell you to just make a Macrium image of C as that would be all you need to restore Windows. You don't need the recovery partition if you don't care about ever restoring to a factory state. That's what recovery partitions do.

HOWEVER, your partitions are dynamic. I frankly do not know if Macrium can make images of them.

For all I know, even if Macrium can make and restore dynamic partitions, that likely doesn't help you as understandably don't want dynamic partitions--restored or otherwise. I'd assume that an image of a dynamic partition that is later restored will result in a dynamic partition, but I stand to be corrected. Maybe you could make a standard partition and restore to it and end up with a non-dynamic bootable C. I dunno.

It certainly can't hurt anything to make separate image of each and every partition and decide later which are necessary for your purposes. It certainly looks to me like all you'd need is C, but not C in dynamic form, which is what you have now.

Macrium images are simply a file. They can be moved around at will. Whether they will restore is another question. Whether a restored dynamic partition does you any good is another question. I would normally expect some issues if you restore an image to different hardware, even if not dynamic. But you might get far enough into your test process to give you some confidence. Offhand, I'd say Macrium is in the 99% range of reliability, but that excludes the dynamic issue.

You'd certainly have to have some way to boot your PC from recovery media to restore the image. You've got some type of device with an Atom processor about which I know very little. Does it have a DVD drive? Does it have USB ports?

You might get some answers on the Macrium/dynamic issue by looking at Macrium forums.

Maybe others will have comments. I'd hold your fire temporarily and provide any more info you can.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #7

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

But nothing is marked Active.

Why is that drive Dynamic, it needs to be converted to basic.

Convert a Dynamic Disk to a Basic Disk
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #8
Microsoft MVP


If Recovery was previously marked System then you can Mark Recovery Partition Active to see if it will boot and revert to System drive. If not then you'll need to mark Recovery Active to ever boot it to run, or you can Boot Recovery Partition using EasyBCD . However since Recovery restores to factory condition it is an inferior install so I would instead Clean Reinstall Windows 7

But first you must deal with the hard drive having converted to Dynamic which is only meant to be used to span a partition across multiple HD's. Apparently you didn't see the warning message.

The solution to solve this non-destructively is to boot free Partition Wizard CD version 4.2 from Option One of Convert a Dynamic Disk to a Basic Disk

Download the ISO, rightclick to burn it to CD using Windows Image Burner, or use ImgBurn.

Boot CD. Then follow these video steps: How to convert dynamic disk to basic disk with Partition Wizard?

If Windows 7 will not start and you confirm it's been converted successfully, then confirm that the 100mb System Reserved partition (preferred if you have it) or C is Set Active partition - Partition Wizard Video Help, then run Startup Repair - Run up to 3 Separate Times.

After conversion if you want help adding a partition post back a screenshot of your maximized Disk Mgmt drive map with listings, using the Snipping Tool in Start Menu, attached using paper clip in Reply Box.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #9
cray claw

Win 7 Home Prem

This is getting a bit confusing.

Firstly, this Free Partition Wizard CD..,
... will the CD be unique to the specific machine or is it transportable?
... or put another way, do I need to burn the CD on the specific machine or is any machine OK?
... can I use this wizard confidently without fear of it deleting everything on the disk?

Secondly, is there an easy way to check if my system boots from C:/ so I can get rid of this recovery partition?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #10
Microsoft MVP


The OS is booting now from C as signified by the System label on it. I told you how you could move the boot files back to Recovery if you wanted, or how to boot Recovery manually if not. You can also delete Recovery if you know you won't need it or have made Recovery disk.

You must first convert the hard drive to Basic before doing anything else since you've somehow made it Dynamic. I gave you very specific steps which if followed will fix this. PW is one tool that will do it without destroying data. I would not have suggested it if it deleted anything, and it will not delete anything if you don't delete anything. Others have used the installed version of Easeus which is the only other one which has this feature for non-destructive conversion that I've heard of.

Once you've converted disk to Basic, test that Win7 boots and System flag is still on C. If so you can delete the Recovery partition using PW disk, resize C into its space to take advantage of the faster speeds on the left side of disk: Partition Wizard Resize Partition - Video Help.

Let us know if you have any other questions.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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