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Copy Hidden Windows Recovery Partition to USB Drive and Restore

I have copied all the data in a hidden OS recovery partition from a hard drive. This partition was provided by the laptop manufacturer to restore the laptop to its original factory windows 7 installation.

Question: How do I copy this data onto a flash USB drive and then restore the OS from the USB drive? Can I load a Windows recovery console using a Windows install DVD, and then point it to the data on the USB drive? Or, do I need to make the USB drive bootable, then copy the data to the USB drive and boot from the USB drive? Note: For various reasons, I do not want to just install windows 7 from a retail install DVD.
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  1. Hi. Are you trying to do something naughty? ''' For various reasons, I do not want to just install Windows 7 from a retail install DVD ''''
  2. mibix19 said:
    Hi. Are you trying to do something naughty? ''' For various reasons, I do not want to just install Windows 7 from a retail install DVD ''''

    No, I reinstalled w7 from a DVD on a new hd, but some items in device mgr show a yellow exclamation mark, and I don't know what the devices are. I loaded all avail drivers from Samsung website for this model laptop, but they did not help.
  3. Have a look on your C: drive. Is there a folder called 'Drivers' or 'Samsung'?

    When you 'installed' your drivers, you may have in fact only unpacked them.

    I reckon that one of your devices is the '4 in 1 Card reader'.

    Find the folder these files were extracted to and go through them and run the 'setup.exe' files to install them.

    As far as the other thing is concerned, copying the files from a hidden partition is not the same as copying the image.

    You could back up an image of that partition and save it for a rainy day and get back the extra space by extending a volume after deleting that partition.
  4. himnextdoor said:
    Have a look on your C: drive. Is there a folder called 'Drivers' or 'Samsung'?

    When you 'installed' your drivers, you may have in fact only unpacked them.

    I reckon that one of your devices is the '4 in 1 Card reader'.

    Find the folder these files were extracted to and go through them and run the 'setup.exe' files to install them.

    As far as the other thing is concerned, copying the files from a hidden partition is not the same as copying the image.

    You could back up an image of that partition and save it for a rainy day and get back the extra space by extending a volume after deleting that partition.



    Hi, Unfortunately the C partition on the original HD is hosed, so I cant read it. The HD is failing but I was able to get data off recovery partition. That's why I bought a new HD. I hooked the old HD to another computer via a USB device I have, that is how I got the data, but C part is unreadable. If I cant use the data from the recovery partition, do I need to copy the image of the old recovery partition to the USB flash drive? If yes How.
  5. Yes, with an application like Acronis.
  6. himnextdoor said:
    Yes, with an application like Acronis.

    How would I do it with Acronis?
    Is it ok the windows OS partition on old drive is foobar?
    Is it OK new HD is a deff size?
    Is there a free way to do this without buying Acronis?
  7. tacoma said:
    mibix19 said:
    Hi. Are you trying to do something naughty? ''' For various reasons, I do not want to just install Windows 7 from a retail install DVD ''''

    No, I reinstalled w7 from a DVD on a new hd, but some items in device mgr show a yellow exclamation mark, and I don't know what the devices are. I loaded all avail drivers from Samsung website for this model laptop, but they did not help.


    Try Driver Booster from Cnet.com
  8. Found this and it worked for me. http://incurlybraces.com/restore-windows-vista-7-wim-file.html

    This technique has been applied to restore Windows 7 to the factory settings found in the Recovery partition in a dell inspiron laptop. The partition is usually hidden. To make it visible, right click on My Computer and choose Manage. From the list of drives that appears, right click on the drive labeled Recovery and choose Mount. Note the drive letter assigned to the partition. Also collect a Windows 7 DVD because the recovery process needs to be carried out from the software in the DVD, not from hard-disk.

    So, we are wiping away whatever junk is there in C:. Lets say the drive letter assigned to our recovery partition is E. The recovery partition contains some useful tools, one of which is imagex. This is what we will use to extract our .wmi image file to C:. Follow the steps below to restore your windows.

    Step 1: Boot from the DVD. In case it does not do that automatically, you may need to change boot device priority settings from BIOS

    Step 2: From the setup screen that appears, click on Repair

    Step 3: From a list of repair options, choose the line that talks about Command Line

    Step 4: A black screen with a blinking cursor appears.You have to change to the recovery drive, then to the tools folder and finally run imagex to restore the image.To achieve this, enter these commands:

    d:
    cd tools
    imagex /apply d:\factory.wim 1 c:


    I used GimageX on Hiren's boot cd because it's gui. My file was called Factory.wim. I still had to go to the boot dir of the DVD and run this command: "bootsect.exe /nt60 c:" to get it to boot correctly.

    Haven't tried it but this might also work to back up and run your OS from a flash drive. Let me know if it works.
  9. Hey There,

    Create an ISO image of your Windows 7 disk using PowerISO Version 5, then open your image with PowerISO, delete all files and directories from image, save image.
    Copy all files and directories from restore partition (the one which was hidden) to the Empty ISO file with powerISO. (Its not actually empty, it has its own boot Image which is not visible, you need this). Save the new ISO file after copy has finished, preferably as new filename. Now using PowerISO, create a bootable USB drive from tools menu, making sure the drive has the capacity necessary (mine was 16GB). Done, boot from this, restore to factory condition. Using USB Image Tool 1.64 (Alexander Beug) you can backup and restore images (in device mode) to and from your USB stick. Its been a while since ive done this but I redid it as writing this to make sure I had it right. This should work with Vista, Win7 and win8,

    Good Luck

    A. MacFadyen
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