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Questions on HD partitons in windows 7


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#1 Ket

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Posted 30 November 2009 - 11:12 AM

I have already started a topic at Hardware > External Hardware section but apparently I need an advice from a windows 7 expert. As I was trying to format an external HD I accidentally set it as Active partition. I didn't know how to undo this and I still don't know. I noticed then that the status of my internal HD partitions was looking weird, so I thought that maybe this change influenced the partitions too. This is how they look now:
Posted Image

At the moment and as I don't face any problems with booting I suppose that this was their status also before. Do they look alright to you? The blank partitions are formated for linux and cannot be recognized by windows. The 2 HP partitions (E:) and (D:) were there by default. Now the (C:) partition has the OS (windows ultimate 7) and the program files, program data and system files. The (G:) partition has only my files (music, videos, documents, pictures etc). Why is it then listed as System Active? Shouldn't that be (C:)?
I also have another question: If something has been changed over the status of the partitions, will a system restore bring back the initial settings? Can one change the status of an active partition to simply primary, as easily as the other way around?

This is the link to the other post: http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/274856/accidentally-set-ext-hd-as-active-partition/
(H:) is the external HD that I accidentally set as active.

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#2 dimrealm

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Posted 03 December 2009 - 02:36 AM

You installed windows to C: which is an extended partition containing a logical volume. Your G: drive is the system partition because it is the first primary partition on the disk that is formatted with a window file system (NTFS) and contains the boot files. Be careful not to delete the boot files from your G: drive!
The only way to make C: the system partition is to repartition the drive and make C: a primary partition.

And no a system restore will not change the partition structure.

System volume

The system volume refers to the disk volume that contains the hardware-specific files that are needed to start Windows, such as Ntldr, Boot.ini, and Ntdetect.com.

On computers that are running the Intel x86 line of CPU processors and later versions, the system volume must be a primary volume that is marked as active. This requirement can be fulfilled on any drive on the computer that the system BIOS searches when the operating system starts.

The system volume can be the same volume as the boot volume. However, this configuration is not required.

Boot volume

The boot volume refers to the disk volume that contains the Windows operating system files and the supporting files. By default, the Windows operating system files are in the WINDOWS folder, and the supporting files are in the WINDOWS\System32 folder.

The boot volume can be the same volume as the system volume. However, this configuration is not required.

There is only one system volume. However, there is one boot volume for each operating system in a multiboot system.

#3 Ket

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Posted 03 December 2009 - 06:25 AM

Thank you for the interesting information. I keep my files such as music, documents etc separated from where the OS and the programs are in order to protect them from whatever damages may occur to C:
I want to ask if ever I have problems with C: and I need to format it, do I have to format also G: in order to work? In other words is it better to have the boot volume together with the system or is it ok as it is?

#4 dimrealm

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Posted 03 December 2009 - 08:29 PM

No you will not have to format the G drive in order for it to work. If you have to reinstall it would just use G again for the boot files.

If you find yourself in the situation of having to reinstall windows, you can delete the C extended partition and recreate it as a primary volume. That way the boot files will be on the same volume. This will not affect your files on G drive.

Personally I prefer to have the boot and system volume together.

Edited by dimrealm, 03 December 2009 - 08:30 PM.


#5 Ket

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Posted 04 December 2009 - 10:39 AM

Ok, that was thorough. Thank you very much.




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