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Win 7 Partitions.

Community Veteran
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Registered: 07-03-2008

Win 7 Partitions.

I am seeking to shrink a partition containing C drive to allow me to instal Mint 11 as an alternative OS. I see that this partition has blue diagonal lines as a background, does this indicate that it is extended? It is very big at 446GB which could be reduced by half for my purposes. There are 3 other Primary partitions at present, all tiny compared with C. How can I alter one of them to allow an extra extended partition to contain 3 new partitions for Mint11?
I have had considerable help in Mac & Linux which naturally think of using gparted and ext4 formats and may well be the way to go. But some information from the M$ point of view will be welcome. I have found the "shrink" option in Disc Management which shows plenty of elbow room but the usual limit of 4 Primary partitions looks like a problem to be overcome. I have Administrator status to my surprise!
Views please.
C.  Huh
21 REPLIES
Community Veteran
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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

A bit of a tangent to your post but I think a worthwhile warning:
If you intend to modify your Windows 7 partition in any way, make sure you have a Windows 7 install disk or, at least, a start-up repair disk as any changes may prevent windows 7 from booting until you run a start-up repair (I found out the hard way and since my install was a downloaded upgrade which did not provide a bootable install disk I had to obtain a start-up repair disk before I could get back into Win7).
Call me 'w23'
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Community Veteran
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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

I think (I haven't tried) that it won't let you alter the active partition
This may be the answer http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-vista/using-gparted-to-resize-your-windows-vista-partition/ however there is a nasty kick in the teeth
Quote
The problem is that if you resize your boot/system partition, you will be completely unable to boot without repairing windows.

A bit of digging indicates that it should be possible but only after a full defrag to clear all the files away from the end so that the bit you are shrinking doesn't have any files in it.
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en/w7itprogeneral/thread/f258f9d5-ff50-4668-83e9-5da4c612...
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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

The drive in question is a "fresh" install there is only W7 installed on it nothing else. He is looking to easily shrink it, I think he may be best making the repair disk('s) and just using gparted to shrink it. Worst case he will use the repair disk to re-install the whole disk again (back to the start, but that shouldn't happen  Wink)
Community Veteran
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Registered: 07-03-2008

Re: Win 7 Partitions.

The plot thickens even more!
I have my Mint 11 discs but not yet played with them. Reading the various topics certainly puts the mockers on using Vista, must have been the biggest M$ booboo since ME! I may be naive but I hope that Win 7 is a lot better in these respects. My HD is SATA with 500GB, previous experience with gparted and IDE drive with only 30GB which had a serious sit and wait time while the files were shuffled, indicates that all day is in prospect! I have the recovery disc for Win 7 which I made during the first few runs. I assume that is what is need to go back to square 1. Is there any option to record a similar disc as a return to a later state?
No news about the background to  my C drive partition.
PS I hope that I have not offended some of you by posting this lot but I thought that words of alternative wisdom might be forthcoming!!
C.   Huh
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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

Quote from: colintivy
I see that this partition has blue diagonal lines as a background, does this indicate that it is extended?

Boot I think.
Shrink (partition) is a standard feature of Disk Management in W7, quick & effective. As stated a thorough defrag increases the likely space.
4 partitions is indeed the normal limit.
(I just shrunk my active W7 partition by 35GB and re-expanded it again while typing this!)
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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

Defrag is always a good idea on an M$ system, but since you haven't used it it shouldn't be fragmented yet  Wink
From what HP S has just said use the M$ tool and shrink it then there should be no issues.
You also need to (re)move one of the small partitions to get an extended on in there.
Community Veteran
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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

Ah! That all sounds less fraught with difficulty. By the way my laptop came with Win 7 already factory-installed, being HP it has their bits in it as well.The present list is:-
  1. System NTFS 199MB 165MB free. 2. C  NTFS 446GB  398GB free. 3. D Recovery 19.46GB  3GB free.  4. F HP Tools FAT32  99MB   89MB free.  All are Primaries.
I think that the HP Tools could be parked somewhere and reinserted when the shrinking of C is over and allocating the spare space as Extended for Mint 11. Any ideas about this?

I have been tackling the changes to my old XP machine and have successfully mounted a new HD as disc 1 without any difficulty. The built-in Disc Management program allowed me to partition it using half its 160GB capacity to NTFS with a view to putting everything presently in disc 0 (which is chockablock at 8GB) into disc 1. During this I noticed that the diagonal lines within the partition merely indicated the selected partition, little problem solved? Ultimately I intend to install a Promise Ultra 100 TX2 controller board and run the discs from its two outputs and scrap the small HD and put in another 160GB drive. Later I will remove the CD ROM and replace it with a DVD/RW which looks like a hard drive for connection.
Must be getting cocky in my old age!
Thanks to you all.  No doubt more later!
C.   Grin Grin
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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

Quote from: colintivy
1. System NTFS 199MB 165MB free.
2. C  NTFS 446GB  398GB free.
3. D Recovery 19.46GB  3GB free.  
4. F HP Tools FAT32  99MB   89MB free.  
  All are Primaries.

Never seen anything like that before!
I'd check what they're all for and how you access/use them before doing anything.
At most I've seen 2 partitions used by a manufacturer - for diagnostics (extension of BIOS functionality usually) and factory restore.
The first is usually a few MB, the 2nd a few GB.
You seem to have a 3rd one.  Crazy

Ah, it might be this: http://www.sevenforums.com/installation-setup/10408-whats-100mb-partition-can-i-delete.html
(I installed all my W7's on pre-partitioned disks so didn't get this)
Community Veteran
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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

This suggests that the HP Tools might be the only one to play with. The advice from the Linux thread could well be OK. I could easily save it in a USB pen drive or even a CD at that size and seek some way f getting it back in when the new partition is in place.  Ideas? The present partition arrangement is exactly as HP have generated. I do not know how valuable the HP extras really are.
C.    Undecided

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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

I don't think they look for a specific partition number, more likely by name or a file on the partition.
If you move them/it off and create an extended partition, then install Linux leaving the required space for them at the end then just restore them if you feel the need or leave them off totally.
Community Veteran
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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

Thanks HB, When I have time I will give it a go. I will try to back-up the contents of the little partition using the built-in program within Win 7 to something that it will accept, I would prefer an external drive in order to avoid any problem within the HD before I put it back after getting Mint 11 to work. I have not played with extended partitions before, I seem to remember that they will allow them to contain partitions that would otherwise be thwarted by the 4 primary limit. Is this so?
Community Veteran
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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

Before doing any of that I suggest you have a good look around online, especially sources related to HP.
From what I've seen it's maybe not going to be that easy.
A clean reinstall of Windows, if you can do that, WITHOUT the System partition, would be my preferred route.
Heloman
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Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Win 7 Partitions.

I recently bought a Packard Bell (Acer) desktop and it also came with all four primary partitions used.
Apparently it is now the norm for OEMs to have rescue partitions rather than a rescue disc.
Microsoft are trying every avenue to make use of a second OS difficult!
Fortunately I have my Linux OS's on an external hard drive....
Waldo
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Re: Win 7 Partitions.

Quote from: Heloman
Apparently it is now the norm for OEMs to have rescue partitions rather than a rescue disc.

Don't such systems provide the software and documentation to create rescue disks from the rescue partition?
If one creates rescue disks and verifies they work, can't the rescue partition be deleted?