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Author Topic: HDD primary partition not able to resize!  (Read 1503 times)

hulkbuster

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HDD primary partition not able to resize!
« on: May 17, 2015, 02:53:57 PM »
Hello folks, today I tried to restore my Win 7 back up image to my default primary partition. Backup was made by this programme called Acronis True image 2012.
After restore, the Pc didn't boot to desktop.
I checked by using G parted tool ,there it shows 8mb got created.
Remaining 70gb was set as logical partition.
I tried to delete, create and resize both the partition, but they like to stay as it is.

I also tried using the Winxp &Win 7 boot disc.
Winxp to can't merge the two partition. It can however delete and create, but can't merge them both.  Win 7 too can't install on the 70gb partition. It seems it got locked somehow.
I used Winxp disc to go to Recovery mode and entered the fix boot and fix Mbr command ,nothing seems to work.

I can't even backup my files to Ext HDD, since that too doesn't work properly. All I can think is to Nuke the disc and start from scratch.
Pleasesee the snapshot taken.

Any suggestions are welcomed.
Autorun Virus Remover.V.2.3 / Look n Stop Firewall.v2.07 / Sandboxie.v4.08  / Some Sense

MilesAhead

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Re: HDD primary partition not able to resize!
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2015, 04:34:04 PM »
Did you run Acronis from Windows or from a boot disc?  I haven't used Acronis but I have used EaseUS ToDo Backup, Macrium Reflect and Paragon Backup.  In all cases when restoring the boot partition you either need a "backup capsule" hidden partition with the restore image, or you boot a disc/usb with the restore program and then restore the image to the boot partition. If you boot to Windows off the HD and run the restore you are trying to restore files that are in use.

I would try not to panic.  You may be able to get the restore image to go on.  I would post on Acronis forum.  Somebody there was likely in the same boat at some point and may know the easiest way to right the ship.

Shades

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Re: HDD primary partition not able to resize!
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2015, 05:13:47 PM »
Do you remember if the hard disk had a 100MByte partition as first partition before you attempted to put the image back?

That 100MByte partition contains information your system requires to boot. Windows 7 creates this small partition on a fresh installation on a fresh hard disk or hard disk that has enough unpartitioned space (located at the beginning sectors of the hard disk).

In a few situations Windows 7 (and higher) forgoes the creation of this 100MByte partition. Usually when the hard disk you use is already partitioned to its fullest extend. For example: you have a partitioned disk under XP, but you decide to re-use the partitions created by XP to onstall Windows 7 over it.

So, if you forgot to take that partition into the image...you will get into situations like this.

GParted states your current hard disk situation to be:
- a 8MByte primary partition
- a 298GByte extended partition, that is sub-divided into logical partitions of about 70GByte each
- and 10MByte of unpartitioned space

One of these sub-divided partitions inside the extended partition was likely intended as your system disk. When the BIOS in your PC only supports the old-skool MBR partitioning, you cannot have more than 4 primary partitions. However, if you need/want more partitions, you can use an extended partition and create logical partitions inside it.

From what I see and understand, best thing to do is:
- use GParted to remove the extended partition intended as your Windows partition
- shrink the extended partition to accommodate the rest of the partitions
- remove all the different unpartitioned spaces in front of the extended partition to create one big unpartitioned space
- re-install windows (to recreate the 100MByte partition and the Windows partition) in that unpartitioned space
- overwrite (only!!!) the new Windows partition with the image you have and try if you can boot

You might end up completely re-installing windows 7 anyway. With the 20/20 hindsight you have now, you will agree that for the next time, try if your image works on a spare hard disk first, before you try it on your main disk.

One good thing: f..k-ups like this teach you so much more about these matters than any successful image restoration ever could.

If you managed not to touch the Movies and Stuffs partitions, the data inside these partitions should be safe and available after you restored the image.

hulkbuster

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Re: HDD primary partition not able to resize!
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2015, 11:56:41 PM »
@Milesahead : I am using Acronis 2012 bootable Usb created by YUMI creator.Funny I never had a problem of such nature.
I had once such a problem over Secure zone that was created by Acronis 2009, that was a real headache. Ended with few bad sectors, that was that, I won't be using Acronis in near future.
It would be great if you could post a thread in there forum and if possible, could come up with a solution.

@Shades:The 8mb partition is set as Active Primary partition.
I can't resize,  upon deleting and creating again it is locked at 8 mb.I thought of shrinking the extended partition, but I am scared if the files are gone too.
If only I had one Ext HDD with me now,  I would take the long road to re-install Winxp and then restore the image and play with it for a while With different image's I had created before.
Autorun Virus Remover.V.2.3 / Look n Stop Firewall.v2.07 / Sandboxie.v4.08  / Some Sense

hulkbuster

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Re: HDD primary partition not able to resize!
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2015, 05:22:14 AM »
I tried to restore my earlier back ups made by Drive Snapshot, which does sector by sector backups : it can only install on the logical drive. The  backup image cannot be restored to the  primary partition which is 7 mb in size.
It can delete and deactivate the active partition, but nothing more.

I see no way,except Nuke the disc.
Any suggestion.
Autorun Virus Remover.V.2.3 / Look n Stop Firewall.v2.07 / Sandboxie.v4.08  / Some Sense
« Last Edit: May 18, 2015, 06:47:56 AM by hulkbuster »

Shades

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Re: HDD primary partition not able to resize!
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2015, 07:10:45 AM »
Do you have another Windows PC (no laptop) that does work?

If so, get: Eassos Partition Guru (the freeware version will do) and install it on that PC. Transfer the hard disk from the broken system into the alternative Windows PC. Make sure the hard disk in the alternative system has sufficient storage space for the data you are going to transfer. If there isn't enough storage space, use your portable HDD instead. The transfer will take (a lot) longer in that case.

Start the software and let it detect all the hard disks and available partitions. Take a good look at the options menu to find transfer and backup methods that you prefer. You are able to transfer files one on one with an interface that looks like the Windows explorer.

When you are done, you have a file backup. Make sure you can access a random set of files without problem on the alternative system. If that check succeeds you can put the hard disk from the broken system back into the broken system. You can use GParted or the Windows installer to wipe all partitions from the hard disk. You should have now one big block of umpartitioned space on the hard disk.

Start the Windows installer and create just the partition for the Windows installation. The installer will say that it creates the 100MB partition. Continue with the installation. Remember the limit of 4 primary partitions? This way your hard disk used up 2 primary partitions already. If you want to make 1 or 2 partitions more everything is still fine. If you want more, you have to return to the extending partition tricks.

I would also suggest to use the Windows 7 installer instead of the XP installer. Because that installer will not burden your hard disk with hard disk alignment problems like the XP installer does.
Also, use the Windows installer or Windows' Disk Manager itself to create the extra partitions. Use GParted only to create the extended partition and all the logical partitions you need or want.

After all the partitioning is done you can continue with the installation and start putting back your data. You could even attempt again to put back the image to see if acronis doesn't f.ck up now. If it does, cut your losses. Use the Windows 7 installer again to remove both the Windows partition and the 100MByte partition and reinstall Windows 7 in the unpartitioned space. You should be getting the idea by now.

All of the above results in in a fresh Windows 7 installation and backed up data.

Making images and putting those back is one way of starting fresh. Creating an optimized rebuild routine is another. Especially if you are the only user on your PC, consider the rebuild routine. Do that properly and the same routine will work with different Windows versions as well.


Vurbal

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Re: HDD primary partition not able to resize!
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2015, 03:18:48 PM »
I would also suggest to use the Windows 7 installer instead of the XP installer. Because that installer will not burden your hard disk with hard disk alignment problems like the XP installer does.

Seeing an 8MB chunk of unpartitioned space at the beginning definitely makes me think it's a Windows install problem. I ran across a similar issue when I had to replace a NT 4 Server install with the Terminal Services version. Specifically, it had to do with an unsupported drive (actually RAID) controller. Normally, if you told Windows to use the whole drive, the installer would leave 8MB of unpartitioned space at the end of the drive. However, because the IBM controller wasn't supported until at least SP3, it put the unpartitioned space at the beginning of the drive, and before the actual partition, instead.

Had I provided the driver on a disc, when prompted during Windows installation, it would have worked fine. Of course, IBM didn't bother to mention anything about it with the documentation, and finding anything on their website was practically impossible. In fact, they didn't even ship the driver disc with it. I ended up using a Win 98 boot disc to partition and format to FAT16, after which Windows installed normally.
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hulkbuster

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Re: HDD primary partition not able to resize!
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2015, 01:18:09 PM »
@ Shades/Vurbal: I did something little similar.I started backing up every file to an Ext HDD and went to NUKE the Disk, performed LLF with Data Lifeguard Diagnostics for DOS for WD hard drive.
How to low level format or write zeros (full erase) to a WD hard drive or Solid State drive

Then created new partition and restored the old backup. All went fine.
Coming to think of it, it was my fault all the time, the Restoration job which created 8 MB partition was actually the backup of Win7 on Dual boot.
It needed to be installed in Logical drive, but i choose to install it on Primary partition. Just presuming, this eventually led to create 8 MB partition.
I again tried to restore another image( have a dozen of backup images with different OS) of Win7 Pro with 100 MB partition , it went well.

For now, i am OK with Winxp, may be will switch to Win7 next week. If i get bored.

But thank you guys, for suggesting and keeping an open mind.
This experience really taught me something, i.e., never mess with partition tables and Restore jobs. It requires some understanding and little experience. I am just glad its over, with something to remember for sometime.   :Thmbsup:
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MilesAhead

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Re: HDD primary partition not able to resize!
« Reply #8 on: May 20, 2015, 01:40:33 PM »
Then created new partition and restored the old backup. All went fine.

Glad you got it configured.   :Thmbsup: