Recovering from Xpress Recovery

Discussion in 'Gigabyte' started by FelixC, Aug 14, 2004.

  1. FelixC

    FelixC Guest

    Just a note for anyone wanting to remove Xpress Recovery from their
    hard drive, so you won't have to repeat the same research as I did:

    I experimented with Gigabyte's Xpress Recovery utility (included in
    the BIOS of my 7N400Pro2 mb) shortly after I installed my new WinXP
    system. It's supposed to make a hidden backup copy of your system
    which can be restored if something corrupts your working system. The
    explanation of it wasn't very clear, either in the manual or on
    Gigabyte's web site, but what it actually did in practice was remove
    about 8 Gbytes of my hard drive. From what I've pieced together, it
    apparently takes advantage of an ability in most modern disk drives to
    create a Host Protected Area (HPA), which is basically a hidden
    partition accessed by a different set of BIOS commands than normal.
    The Gigabyte utility removed part of the active NTFS partition to
    create an HPA of the required size, then made a compressed backup copy
    of my system and stored it in the HPA. Whether the backup included the
    whole system, or just selected parts, I don't know - I did this before
    I'd added a lot to the basic WinXP installation. Afterward my drive
    size was reported as 8 Gbytes smaller.

    Later I wanted to remove the Xpress Recovery partition and recover the
    8 Gbytes of hard drive space. I used the "Remove" option in Xpress
    Recovery, and it said "ok", but I didn't get back my 8 Gbytes. From
    what I could see, this space was removed from the hidden HPA and
    re-appeared as unallocated free space in the partition table. So I
    figured I could probably recover it by extending my active NTFS
    partition into the new free space. This proved to be the case. I guess
    I could have used something like Partition Magic, but it turns out
    that there's a way to do it in WinXP (see MS Knowledge Base acticle It says that it isn't
    recommended for active boot partitions, but it works anyway.
    FelixC, Aug 14, 2004
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