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Windows 8.1 Setup and Diskpart


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#1 smithee16

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Posted 30 October 2016 - 06:08 PM

Hi,

 

I was hoping someone could give me the exact commands in Diskpart I need to input during Windows 8.1 setup (on the 'Where do you want to install Windows?' screen) in order recreate the below partitions:

 

NAME                                                 TOTAL SIZE               TYPE

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Drive 0 Partition 1: System                 499.0 MB                    System

 

Drive 0 Partition 2                               111.3 GB                    Primary

 

 

Btw, I'd like to label the entire drive (it will be the C: drive) as "Windows" or "Operating System," and I'm assuming that's done using the 'label' command. Is that correct?

 

Thank-you to anyone that replies.

 



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#2 JohnC_21

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Posted 30 October 2016 - 06:30 PM

Is there any reason why you want the System Partition at 499MB? Windows 8 will automatically partition the disk. If this is a UEFI computer then the disk needs to be initialized as GPT in diskpart then Windows will automatically create the EFI System Partition of 100MB if the drive is not native 4k advanced format in which case it will be 260MB, the hidden MSR partition of 128MB, and the Windows partition. 



#3 smithee16

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Posted 30 October 2016 - 06:56 PM

Is there any reason why you want the System Partition at 499MB? Windows 8 will automatically partition the disk. If this is a UEFI computer then the disk needs to be initialized as GPT in diskpart then Windows will automatically create the EFI System Partition of 100MB if the drive is not native 4k advanced format in which case it will be 260MB, the hidden MSR partition of 128MB, and the Windows partition. 

 

The disk's been initialised as GPT; all the necessary UEFI settings in the BIOS are as they should be in this particular installation scenario. I'd just like to recreate the structure of my hard disk as it was received from the manufacturer, hehe. Sounds a bit weird, but the computer served me brilliantly until a few days ago when Windows Update sent my computer haywire... cut a long story short, I had to do a clean windows install (thankfully all my non O.S. files, folders, etc., are on a separate 'storage' hard disk, so nothing was lost in the strictest sense of the word; just a lot of wasted time and a few heart-in-mouth moments).

 

Currently, I'm on a test install where I'm tentatively trying some stuff out to see whether I can get everything back up and running as I had it previously, and all seems well. I'd just like to do a "proper" install now that I'm sure I've got the process down. That is aside from the partitioning and Diskpart aspect of things, which is proving to be a tad tricky. 


Edited by smithee16, 30 October 2016 - 06:59 PM.


#4 JohnC_21

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Posted 30 October 2016 - 07:13 PM

I think it would be too much of a headache to duplicate the OEMs partitions after a clean install as you have removed the factory reset partition after a clean install. The 499mb partition would be used to initialize the factory reset but since that reset partition is gone there would be no need for it. 

 

Personally, once you do a clean install and install all programs and updates I would create a disk image to an external drive with an imaging program like Macrium Free or Aomei Backupper. Both allow you to create bootable media, either CD or USB, that would let you restore the image in case the computer no longer boots because of file system corruption or a failed hard drive. Doing this you would be back up in minutes vs hours. The programs also allow you to mount the disk image and explore the contents, allowing you to copy any file out of the image. Aomei also has file and folder backup. 

 

Another option would be Aomei One Key Free. (Free version at the bottom of the page) After you have your computer fully updated and all your programs installed One Key will automatically create a partition and image the drive. One Key allows you to tap a key at boot and restore the image similar to a factory reset although this would not help should the drive fail.

 

How One Key Works


Edited by JohnC_21, 30 October 2016 - 07:19 PM.


#5 smithee16

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 04:40 AM

Thank-you very much. I've gone away and done some digging based on your suggestions, and it seems Aomei is the way to go in both scenarios you mentioned. 

 

Just a final question: for some reason when attempting a clean install of Windows 8.1, when I allow Windows setup to do its thing, it always ends up creating a fourth unallocated partition of about 128MB in addition to a 300MB Recovery partition; a 100MB EFI partition, and the normal C: partition. The 100MB EFI partition and the C partition I appreciate are vital, but how can I ensure that 128MB unallocated space and the 300MB Recovery partition (which won't be needed when I install Aomei One Key) can be prevented from being created? I don't want these tiny little partitions on my disk. I just want the EFI partition and the C: partition.



#6 Platypus

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 06:28 AM

it always ends up creating a fourth unallocated partition of about 128MB


This occurs by default when a drive is partitioned in Windows to allow for possible future conversion to a dynamic drive, which needs some unallocated space available. You could possibly expand the preceding partition into it, but I doubt if it's worth the bother.

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#7 smithee16

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 08:36 AM

 

it always ends up creating a fourth unallocated partition of about 128MB


This occurs by default when a drive is partitioned in Windows to allow for possible future conversion to a dynamic drive, which needs some unallocated space available. You could possibly expand the preceding partition into it, but I doubt if it's worth the bother.

 

 

Oh that's fine. Thanks for the clarification. Is there any way to prevent the creation of the 300MB recovery partition, particularly with me going the Aoemi route of creating a recovery partition (in addition to a separate backup on another drive)?

 

EDIT: Just ran Aoemi OneKey Recovery. Everything worked great. It's created a bootable recovery partition. But it's also gone and created another partition, this time an 800MB FAT32 primary partition. What's that one for, lol?


Edited by smithee16, 31 October 2016 - 08:56 AM.


#8 JohnC_21

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 08:57 AM

I would not remove it. It's the Windows RE (Recovery Environment) This would be tools available if the computer does not properly boot such as System Restore and Startup Repair.

 

https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/hardware/commercialize/manufacture/desktop/configure-uefigpt-based-hard-drive-partitions

 

Recovery tools partition

This partition must be at least 300 MB.

This partition must have enough space for the Windows Recovery Environment tools image (winre.wim, typically between 250-300MB, depending on base language and customizations added), plus enough free space so that the partition can be captured by backup utilities:

  • If the partition is less than 500 MB, it must have at least 50 MB of free space.
  • If the partition is 500 MB or larger, it must have at least 320 MB of free space.
  • If the partition is larger than 1 GB, we recommend that it should have at least 1 GB free.
  • This partition must use the Type ID: DE94BBA4-06D1-4D40-A16A-BFD50179D6AC.
  • The recovery tools should be in a separate partition than the Windows partition to support automatic failover and to support booting partitions encrypted with Windows BitLocker Drive Encryption.

We recommend that you place this partition immediately after the Windows partition. This allows Windows to modify and recreate the partition later if future updates require a larger recovery image.

 

 

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#9 smithee16

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 10:21 AM

I've got 5 partitions:

 

300 MB 

(Recovery Partition)

 

100 MB

(EFI System Partition)

 

C: 

(Boot, Page, etc)

 

AOMEI

800 MB FAT32 Primary

 

AOMEI Recovery Partition 

NTFS Primary

 

Is that normal?

 

Also, I've encountered an issue with Aomei OneKey. With the option to press F11/A to enter the recovery environment during boot, it seems it prevents me from entering the BIOS. However, it says I must disable Secure Boot in the BIOS in order to use this F11/A option - which I have - yet I still can't enter my BIOS as long as the F11/A option is ticked during the OneKey program itself. I have to switch off the F11/A option each time. It's all well and good having a working recovery environment, but if I can't access my BIOS for other vital issues, then that's a pretty major issue. Yes, I've quadruple-checked all settings, and Secure Boot is definitely off. I thought CSM might be the issue too (considering both areas are linked in a way) and I turned off CSM too, but to no avail. Shame, I really liked OneKey. Any suggestions?



#10 JohnC_21

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 10:40 AM

Those partitions are normal but I have never run into the BIOS key issue with OneKey although I have it installed on only one computer and it was not UEFI. I have used it to sucessfully recover the computer so it does work. According to help the A key is not available on UEFI systems. If you uncheck the F11/a option do you get the boot menu as shown below

 

http://www.backup-utility.com/images/abfw/image011.jpg

 

If you increase the time shown for the menu can you access UEFI settings by tapping your key as soon as you see your OEM boot logo? 

 

 



#11 smithee16

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 10:51 AM

...but I have never run into the BIOS key issue with OneKey although I have i installed on only one computer and it was not UEFI. I have used it to sucessfully recover the computer so it does work. According to help the A key is not available on UEFI systems. If you uncheck the F11/a option do you get the boot menu as shown below
 
http://www.backup-utility.com/images/abfw/image011.jpg

If you increase the time shown for the menu can you access UEFI settings by tapping your key as soon as you see your OEM boot logo?

Oh yes, the blue Windows option (pressing shift + Restart) shows the above screen (in the Advanced section). But it doesn't show during normal boot if that's what you're referring to.

But my computer crashes if I try to access the UEFI firmware settings via the aforementioned Shift + Restart method if I have the second tickbox ticked in Aoemi startup settings. I don't think Windows (or the BIOS) likes Aoemi's boot up procedure or whatever, hehe.

It's very disappointing, because if somehow my PC ends up in a state where I can't get to the blue screen where I can access the Aoemi recovery environment, because the only other means of accessing Aoemi recovery partition is the F11\A option (which I have to turn off because it prevents my BIOS from loading), the program is a bit of a dud for UEFI systems; great for legacy systems but not so much for others.

Edited by smithee16, 31 October 2016 - 10:53 AM.


#12 JohnC_21

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 10:55 AM

In that case I would recommend using either Macrium Free or Aomei Backupper to create your disk image to an external drive. The boot media both programs create would allow you to recover the image from the external hard drive should the computer no longer boot. Using these programs also allows you to create multiple images to the external hard drive and both allow you to create differential/incremental images from a base image to keep your image sizes small.



#13 smithee16

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 11:12 AM

My thoughts exactly. Thanks again for your help. I'll be giving Macrium Free a go later this evening.

Btw, once I've uninstalled OneKey, is it safe to delete the two Aoemi partitions? If so, how do I merge them back with my C drive? I'm presuming via the Disk Management utility?

Edited by smithee16, 31 October 2016 - 11:25 AM.


#14 JohnC_21

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 11:38 AM

If I can remember correctly when I uninstalled Aomei One Key in control panel the partitions were automatically removed. If they are not you can delete the partitions with Partition Wizard. In both all steps are virtual until the apply button is clicked. If the partitions are removed but the Windows partition was not resized or expanded you can do it with Partition Wizard.

 

If the partitions are not deleted after the install I would delete each Aoemi partition then expand your Windows partition.

 

Partition Wizard

 

Delete Partition

Resize Partition



#15 smithee16

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Posted 31 October 2016 - 05:07 PM

I've created a bootable DVD using Aomei Backupper (well, it created an .iso file successfully, but wouldn't burn the image to the DVD, so I had to use another program to burn the iso to DVD). I tried out the bootable DVD by booting from it, and it successfully loaded the recovery environment. I guess that's the most important thing in my particular situation. Once I make my final, proper install I can create a backup of a fully updated and optimised C drive, and if the worse ever comes to the worse I can use this newly created bootable DVD to access the backup and restore it.






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