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# 22161 19-May-2008 06:52
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As is common now, my laptop comes with a recovery partition but no physical Windows CD.
Is there some way of transferring that recovery partition onto a disk so I can restore Windows after a HD format?
Thanks.

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BDFL - Memuneh
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  # 131691 19-May-2008 08:17
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Recovery partitions! Dont get me started...

I own a pretty decent HP desktop which is way past its prime (5+ years). Its got a recovery partition and unfortuntaley it was built before HP gave you the ability to burn your own recovery disc onto removable media.

As murphy would have it; one day my hard drive died! Luckily I was able to copy the contents of the recovery partition onto another hard drive and do a recovery from that. Ive also copied the contents of the recovery partition onto a DVD for safe keeping.

Its probably against some license agreement but since HP never gave me the tools to make recovery disc, what options do I have?

Oh BTW I did ring HP when all of this occured (about two years ago) and they said they could send me a recovery DVD but it would cost a bit. I cant remember the exact cost but it was high enough for me to explore other options first.

So I guess if you can access the recovery partition (which isnt always possible, mine strangely appeared over time due to something I did to the OS) you could copy the conents to a portable drive, format your main drive, copy the recovery contents back and then do a restore.

Trevor

 
 
 
 


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  # 131716 19-May-2008 10:36
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IMHO no-one should ever buy a PC (laptop or otherwise) for personal use without a CD that is bootable and includes a recovery utility. I would suggest a 'Recovery' CD(s) that includes a utility to reinstall Windows either from a recovery partition on the hard drive (fastest - where Windows is a problem but the hard disk is not) or from the CDs (hard disk is replaced or recovery partition is not usable) and with documentation from the manufacturer on how to use it. If in doubt ask the salesperson what you are expected to do if the hard disk fails - and if the response is 'this will never happen' or anything that requires resources that dont come with the machine then dont buy it.

I bought an ASUS laptop 4 years ago that had such a recovery CD - that came in most handy recently when I installed XP SP3 RC2 and the result was Windows getting a boot error. I simply booted with the recovery CD carried out a Windows repair installation (unfortunately with the base XP release so then had to install SP2 then go through Windows update). I was damn glad I had not bought one of the 'diskless' laptops.

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  # 131719 19-May-2008 10:47
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peejayw: As is common now, my laptop comes with a recovery partition but no physical Windows CD.
Is there some way of transferring that recovery partition onto a disk so I can restore Windows after a HD format?
Thanks.


First, if you reformat you'll only format the c: drive and not the hidden partition, that should remain in its current state.

However, how do you "clone" a drive with a hidden partition so that if the hard drive dies, you can copy things over to the new drive and start like everything is new?

I don't know.

However you *may* be able to do so using Norton Ghost or Acronis True Image.

What I'd like is to be able to remove a laptops drive, place it in a USB enclosure, run from another computer either of the above 2 programs and copy the whole drive, boot sector, partition table, numerous partitions etc to the main drive of the PC, then backup that using my own preferred method.

I'll find out when I get my next laptop.

links:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acronis_True_Image
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_free_disk_cloning_soft
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disk_cloning
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norton_Ghost

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  # 131727 19-May-2008 11:05
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I used this software to clone my drive (incl recovery partition);

http://www.miray.de/products/sat.hdclone.html

As long as youre going to a bigger drive the free version will do the trick.

Trevor

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  # 131743 19-May-2008 12:12
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One other thing.  If you are going to clone a hard drive "sector by sector", and wanting to compress the resulting files, then create a file a.txt containing just one character repeated over and over again. Peform the following commands (in MS-DOS):

copy a.txt /b + a.txt /b  b.txt /b

del a.txt

ren b.txt a.txt

and repeat these commands until your hard drive becomes full. Delete a.txt.  Your image now should be highly compressable.

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  # 134195 29-May-2008 16:21
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First thing I do for a person thesedays setting up a new machine is make them a clonezilla bootable DVD with everything they need to restore every partition back to factory state.

I do this before completing the Windows Setup wizard etc..


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