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  1. #1
    Star Lounger Ibex's Avatar
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    My Vista saga continues ... Part 3 - recovery partitions

    Hi,
    The crisis is mainly over now. I have now spent many hours reinstalling a huge load of software, and my Vista machine is much better than when I got it with its preinsalled stuff. As it turned out, most software these days is desgned to install itself once you give it permission. You do have to be mindful of just what you are installing. One tip is to keep a sharp eye on the installationn programs as they go through their paces. Often they try to saddle you with additonal rubbish that you don't need like extra toolbars, or other software that you will have to pay for. Also another tip is to turn off your antivirus software when you are downloading from the Net or even installing software from a disc. Turn it back on again when you are finished. Do a scan immediately after installing things from the Net if you are worried. Antiviral software can interfere with downloads and installations.


    Now I have some questions? How do I create a recovery partition? I know nothing about them. Just what does a recoery partition recover? Is it similar to setting restore points? How do they differ?

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    You don't create a Recovery Partition. That is something the manufacturer does when they install S/W on the PC the first time.

    You can create a second partition to load your Images into, but if you do this it is wise to also save Images off you PC as if a HD itself goes bad, you loose your Image Partition as well.

    You have to use the Disk Manger built into Windows (run, disk management, Create Partitions blah, blah) I prefer 3rd party partitioning S/W such as Partition Wizard. All you do is open the Partitioning app, whichever app you choose, you resize your main HD and make it smaller. In Partition Wizard you just grab the right border and slide it to the left. This leaves unallocated space. You then take this unallocated space and format it as a Logical Drive.

    PartitionWizard.jpg
    You would then choose whatever Imaging tool you use, create a boot disk for that Imaging tool, boot to that boot disk and Create a backup. You have to name the Image file and choose where to store it. Choose the Data or Recovery partition (Whatever you named it) and let the Imaging app do it's job. I would also store this off PC as mentioned earlier. For example I create and store my Images on an Ext USB HD. It takes a little longer (perhaps 15 minutes or so for my HD size. This depends on how large you data is on your HD) This Image only copies the used space on the HD so I always clean up my HD getting rid of temp files, log files, error memory logs, etc and then defrag just prior to making an Image.

    The last step is to try the Image by restoring to it. The first time this is the scary part as you actually should try to restore with the Image to make sure it works.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


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    Ibex (2012-06-05)

  4. #3
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    You don't need a recovery partition since you already have a purchased copy of a Windows Vista genuine install disk.
    What you do need is to make an image of your updated Vista installation with all your programs & drivers.
    The image you create can reside on a separate partition or external hard drive, or both. But as Ted says, make a decent
    rescue disk and test the entire restore process.

    A couple of other things...

    *One should always avoid installing programs/applications directly from the internet. Download them to a secure location
    and have them scanned with your AV/AM software first. This will also allow you to store hard to find apps.
    *Download all your applications from the official site, rather than second hand through someone else, unless that someone else
    is fully trustworthy to you.
    *By all means look closely at what you are installing, many free applications will support themselves by adding "other" programs to
    the installer. More often than not, there will be opt in/out options that can easily be missed if attention is not paid.
    If there are no opt in/out options, then you will have to be the judge as to whether or not it's worth installing.
    Last edited by CLiNT; 2012-06-05 at 12:30.

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    Ibex (2012-06-05)

  6. #4
    Star Lounger Ibex's Avatar
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    Thank you Ted and Clint for that info. That has made things a lot clearer for me.

    I have a few other questions. My preinstalled HD did have a recovery partition when I got the machine. I couldn't get it to help when I was in trouble with the OS. (I'm still learning about my system. My lack of knowledge, no doubt, also would have made a contribution to the ultimamate system failure that I got. Had I known better, I could maybe have used timely remedial action and perhaps might have been able to use that recovery partition.) By then the whole system was virtually disfunctional. When I reloaded the OS, the installation software left this partitioned area alone. How can I view just what's on it, if it's contents weren't damaged by my previoius problems? Should I now remove this partition and make more space available on my HD?
    Last edited by Ibex; 2012-06-05 at 14:00.

  7. #5
    Gold Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ibex View Post
    When I reloaded the OS, the installation software left this partitioned area alone. How can I view just what's on it, if it's contents weren't damaged by my previoius problems? Should I now remove this partition and make more space available on my HD?
    Ibex,
    Hello... you could try to view it using explorer , but i can't remember if your OS will let you ..The way a Recovery partition works is you use Windows at boot time by pressing F-11 ( on my PC) and it would then open the Recovery Manager.. This would allow you to "recover" your OS from that partition ... The down side is it will have none of your software or "Updates" or Patches ...you have to start from ground zero again ... The best way to proceed is to

    1. Image the Recovery partition and save it someplace ...like a flash drive or 2nd Internal or External HD ... This way you could always make your PC like the day you got it .. say you wanted to give it away, etc.

    2. Yes.. Then remove the partition and reclaim the space... Regards Fred
    PlainFred

    None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free (J. W. Von Goethe)

  8. #6
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    Each brand of PC works a little different with the Recovery Partition. The manufacturer's web site should tell you how.

    Personally, using Images is a better alternative. The Factory Restore will install all the junkware the Manufacturer originally installed including all the trial ware. Plus any updates, customizations and apps you have installed will be gone.

    With an Up To Date Image (I recreate Images when I make changes on my PC) I can restore my HD to the exact moment my Image was created in about 10 minutes. This restoration does include all customizations, updates and apps installed. I consider this the much, much better alternative. You just save so much work over the Factory Recovery alternative.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


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  9. #7
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    How can I view just what's on it, if it's contents weren't damaged by my previoius problems? Should I now remove this partition and make more space available on my HD?
    Disk management should do the job;
    Type "diskmgmt.msc" into the run box, when the program comes up, right click on the partition you would like to view and select "explore".
    If that doesn't work, meaning the partition is hidden, you'll need a 3rd party partition management tool to "unhide" it.
    Many programs offer this feature.

  10. #8
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    I personally use Partition Wizard (free) for my partitioning needs. It's very easy to use and does everything I want of it. I have removed the Factory Partition on all my PC's because they all originally came with Vista and I will never go back there. Some advocate saving this partition because if you ever want to get rid of your PC, you can return it to factory, thus saving the trouble of setting up the HD for the next owner.

    For your needs though, Imaging is the way to go!
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


    Sony Vaio Laptop, 2.53 GHz Duo Core Intel CPU, 8 GB RAM, 320 GB HD
    Win 8 Pro (64 Bit), IE 10 (64 Bit)


    Complete PC Specs: By Speccy

  11. #9
    Star Lounger Ibex's Avatar
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    There were two or three additional handy entries made about imaging this morning. Now you have taken them away. I did view them quickly from my XP machine this morning but it has a defective browser and it crashed within a few minutes. It is gettinig steadily worse and will have to be formatted too. So if I didn't thank you people for those entries immediately, that was the reason. I was intending to download them later tonight and also thank you with my other (Vista) machine, but those entries have gone. Can you put them back please. I do value your imput.

  12. #10
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    To which entries are you refering?

  13. #11
    Star Lounger Ibex's Avatar
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    Hi clint,
    I thought that I saw two or three additional entries by youself and, I think, Fred or maybe Ted. They referred to the imaging of hard disks. I only skimmed through them, and wanted to absorb them later, but by then, they seemed to be gone. The computer I was using didn't give me much of a chance to do anything at the time. It was coming up with run-time errors and was threatening to shut down. Then it froze. It just might have been that I could have seen another post instead of mine in the confusion.

    Anyway. Could you give me more information on imaging please? What it does and what variatons there are with it? I don't know much about it. Can you recommend software too please?
    Thanks
    Last edited by Ibex; 2012-06-07 at 08:46. Reason: typos and afterthoughts

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