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How can i reformat my hard drive without deleting the recovery partition?

Discussion in 'Lenovo' started by Blue Diamond, May 6, 2009.

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  1. Blue Diamond

    Blue Diamond Notebook Evangelist

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    basically, is there any possible way to reformat the hard drive partition WITHOUT the recovery part? and then reinstall windows WITH the recovery partition after that? i have a T61 btw
     
  2. Lithus

    Lithus NBR Janitor

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    If you're going to install Windows with the recovery partition, then you don't need to reformat your primary partition. The act of recovery will automatically format it for you.
     
  3. Blue Diamond

    Blue Diamond Notebook Evangelist

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    hmmm, u sure? where did you hear this from?
     
  4. mullenbooger

    mullenbooger Former New York Giant

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    What lithus said makes sense. If you recover from the recovery partition you shouldn't lose the recovery partition.
     
  5. zillal

    zillal Notebook Consultant

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    Am not sure I understand what you want to do. But to for instance put in a new hard disk:

    1. Backup your C: drive

    2. Burn recovery disks (Create Product Recovery Media in Start -- All Programs -- Thinkvantage folder). First disk has to be CD, rest can be DVD.

    3. Reset to factory settings on the new disk by booting from the recovery disks.

    4. Restore your C: drive

    If you already destroyed the current recovery partition you can get recovery disks from Lenovo support for around $75.
     
  6. Lithus

    Lithus NBR Janitor

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    Where did I hear it from? That's the definition of a system recovery...
     
  7. djshack

    djshack Notebook Geek

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    From recent experience, if you use the recovery DVDs/CDs you make yourself, they literally wipe out your hard drive and reinstall all three partitions (S:, C:, and the Lenovo one that's useless once you've burned the discs). Your computer will be exactly how it was when you took it out of the box.

    Actually kind of annoying IMO. I'd prefer a freakin' Vista disc without the Lenovo stuff.

    Also, does anyone know if the computer would still boot without the S: partition? Is that just for recovery, or also for booting? I can't wait for final 7 to come out so I can just use a Windows disc (no Lenovo partitions and crap).
     
  8. Indrek

    Indrek Notebook Virtuoso

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    The S: partition isn't needed for booting. The day Win7 RC was publicly released I wiped my hard drive clean and installed Win7 (and Ubuntu 9), without the Lenovo partitions. No problems so far.
    Of course I created the recovery DVDs beforehand.
     
  9. djshack

    djshack Notebook Geek

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    I know it's not needed for 7, but is it needed for the factory/recovery install of Vista? I can't figure out if it just keeps some backup/recovery info on it, or if Windows actually loads from S: rather than C: (again, only with the factory Vista).
     
  10. zillal

    zillal Notebook Consultant

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    The S: partition is a Windows predesktop area (google on predesktop).

    So in the factory preload MBR points to the S: partition that then loads C: (unless you push Thinkvantage/F11 button).

    It also uses track 0 following MBR. That's why cloning a factory preload with Acronis True Image won't work, Acronis copies MBR and the partitions but not track 0.

    Anyway when you do any kind of clean install you wipe MBR so as you no longer can enter the S: partition you might as well reformat reclaiming the space it uses.
     
  11. djshack

    djshack Notebook Geek

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    I learned about the True image not working the hard way.

    So, to clarify, as long as I'm running Vista with the Lenovo installation, I should NOT delete partition S:?
     
  12. zillal

    zillal Notebook Consultant

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    Yes correct.
     
  13. uabv2

    uabv2 Newbie

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    Guys

    Is there any way to restore C: drive from the hidden drive when you have reformatted C:? I can see the hidden drive as D: I cant see an exe file in D: to start the restore

    Its an IBM A31

    Thanks
    Peter
     
  14. Renee

    Renee Notebook Virtuoso

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    Wait a minute! The S: partition is not a part of any part of Windows and neither is the D: partition. The only partition that windows insists upon is the first or boot partition. Anything else is optional and it's your option.
    -Renee
     
  15. Renee

    Renee Notebook Virtuoso

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    Maybe you shouldn't delete the partition after it's been put in Because the agent the put things in the partition will want to do things with them.

    I did a CLEAN instalation on a T61p. I've done more than 30 clean installations of windows and I used to work in VMS engineering and was the designer of host-based shadowing. I know.

    Here's the secret. Do a clean installation with NO Lenovo at all. Before you do, make sure you have all necessary drivers. Install the OS. Then install what you want from the page of this web that has later releaseses. Then install all layered products.

    -Renee
     
  16. zillal

    zillal Notebook Consultant

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    It's only called S: partition in the new Vista thinkpads. In earlier TPs it was called the predesktop area and was hidden.

    But in both cases it is the booting partition to which MBR points. It is running w Windows PE 1.5 for XP and Windows PE 2.0 for Vista. If it doesnt get interrupted by Thinkvantage/F11 it then hands over to full Vista or XP in the C: partition.
     
  17. zillal

    zillal Notebook Consultant

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    You first need to restore MBR to be able to boot into the predesktop area using IBM Access or F11. Here is the utility to do that.

    Did the A31 still come with a diskette reader for the Ultrabay? If not and you can't borrow a diskette reader you might just try this. I think it's intended to solve a different problem and I never saw anybody successfully use it for your problem but it could be worth trying.
     
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