what exactly is the RECOVERY partion?

Discussion in 'Dell' started by Joe, Feb 21, 2012.

  1. Joe

    Joe Guest

    I have a Dimension 9200.

    I now back up my computer using Acronis which makes mirror images of the
    drive(s).

    Should I bother also backing up the RECOVERY partion?

    Just exactly what is that partion? I presume it's a copy of what was
    installed on the C drive when I purchased the computer back in '07. But, is
    it ever accessed and for what reasons?

    I make the mirror images so that if the drive dies- I can install a new
    drive, and in theory, install the image back on the new drive- and if I ever
    do that, would it serve any purpose to also reinstall the RECOVERY partition
    if in fact I had mirrored it too?
    Joe
     
    Joe, Feb 21, 2012
    #1
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  2. Joe

    Ben Myers Guest

    The theory of a recovery partition is flawed. Yes, if the OS on the
    hard drive gets completely messed up, doing a recovery from the
    recovery partition will put the drive back to its factory settings,
    more or less. Of course, all the data is lost, which is one defect in
    the concept. The other is that the recovery partition is useless if
    the hard drive fails. So, yes, back up the recovery partition and be
    prepared to set up a replacement hard drive with both the recovery
    partition and the main one for the OS and data.

    It is doubly annoying to have a recovery partition and no
    reinstallation CD/DVD... Ben Myers
     
    Ben Myers, Feb 21, 2012
    #2
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  3. Joe

    yukonron Guest

    The short answer is no you don't need to back it up since it's already
    backup. Here's the long answer
    This will explain what your recovery partition is for and how to remov
    it if you choose to do so
    http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/dim9200/en/OM_EN/YH242A02.pd
    The info you're interested in is on page's 74 & 7

    *The pro's of deleting your recovery partition
    After a short period of time, the data on the Restore partition i
    obsolete, with all the Microsoft updates and such
    If you have all the original disk for re-installs, I would just back u
    any data that you might need, and go into the Control Panel
    Administrative Tools, Computer Management, Storage, Disk Management, an
    delete the Dell Recovery Restore partition.
    It usually is labled D:, but be certain this is the correct partition
    You can then merge the partition with the larger C: partition
    By deleting the Dell Recovery Restore partition, you can recover abou
    15-20 GBs of hard drive capacity, depending on how large it is
    Then you can reboot and install the OS of your choice, and all you
    programs
    *The con's of deleting your recovery partion
    I personally don't recommend this, since at some point you may want t
    get rid of your system, you couldn't put it back as it was shipped. Tha
    way it would be brand new and wouldn't have any trace of your data left
     
    yukonron, Feb 22, 2012
    #3
  4. Joe

    Joe Guest

    Ben, so what is the FAT partition that Acronis sees but which doesn't show
    up in My Computer? And should I back that up too? I suppose there is no
    reason not to- it's very small, whatever it is.
    thanks,
    Joe


    The theory of a recovery partition is flawed. Yes, if the OS on the
    hard drive gets completely messed up, doing a recovery from the
    recovery partition will put the drive back to its factory settings,
    more or less. Of course, all the data is lost, which is one defect in
    the concept. The other is that the recovery partition is useless if
    the hard drive fails. So, yes, back up the recovery partition and be
    prepared to set up a replacement hard drive with both the recovery
    partition and the main one for the OS and data.

    It is doubly annoying to have a recovery partition and no
    reinstallation CD/DVD... Ben Myers
     
    Joe, Feb 22, 2012
    #4
  5. Joe

    davy Guest

    .... and if the hard drive goes 'kaputt' you've no back up

    I'd say 'it's handy to have a spare copy'... if it hasn't been include
    in the Acronis back up.

    dav
     
    davy, Feb 22, 2012
    #5
  6. Joe

    Brian K Guest

    Joe,

    Have a look in Disk Management. Is the Recovery Partition the Active
    partition? The Active partition contains the booting files.
     
    Brian K, Feb 22, 2012
    #6
  7. Just a reminder: Writing over old data only "removes" it from easy
    retrieval. If it's really important to someone (or to some government
    agency), there are still ways to retrieve it, although it is very costly. If I
    were to give my computer away to someone, I'd give it away minus the
    hard drive (but with the recovery partition on removeable medium) and
    let the new owner provide and load the new hard drive with the backed-
    up OS.

    *TimDaniels*
     
    Timothy Daniels, Feb 23, 2012
    #7
  8. Joe

    Nick Guest

    That's only true if you are absolutely sure the partition ONLY contains a
    backup. That often won't be the case.

    If Windows Disk Management shows the RECOVERY partition as a "system"
    partition, you definitely need to back it up because that partition contains
    files your computer needs to boot up.

    My Dell computer (with Win7) is set up that way, and from what I've read
    that's a fairly standard practice: putting important bootup files in a
    separate partition that's not easily accessible by the user protects those
    files from being deleted, damaged, etc. Win7 also protects the files by
    preventing the system partition from being deleted or reformatted.

    In addition to files needed to boot the computer, on a Win7 system the
    RECOVERY partition may also hold the recovery environment: a set of tools
    that can fix certain types of problems with the boot-up process. (The
    recovery environment can also be accessed from a Win7 install disk or from a
    system repair disk you make yourself.)

    So unless you've used Disk Manager to specifically verify that the RECOVERY
    partition is not a system partition, I would strongly recommend backing it
    up. If you restore from an image that doesn't include all the files Windows
    needs to boot up, you may need to do some extra work to get your computer
    working again.
     
    Nick, Feb 24, 2012
    #8
  9. Joe

    Nick Guest

    Forgot this in my previous post...

    The information the original poster is looking for is not on pages 74 and 75
    of that PDF user manual you refer to: you and that manual are talking about
    something completely different from the "RECOVERY" partition this thread is
    about.

    Adding to what I said in my previous post: don't delete the RECOVERY
    partition unless you're absolutely sure it doesn't contain any bootup files
    (i.e., it's not a 'system' partition).
     
    Nick, Feb 24, 2012
    #9
  10. Joe

    Brian K Guest

    Nick,

    Thanks for agreeing with my previous post. I copy the booting files from the
    Recovery partition to the Win7 partition and then delete the Recovery
    partition. This suits my method of backing up.
     
    Brian K, Feb 24, 2012
    #10
  11. Joe

    Daave Guest

    Daave, Feb 25, 2012
    #11
  12. Joe

    Nick Guest

    I know the bootup files can be relocated, but I just never bothered. The
    RECOVERY partition is small enough that including the whole thing in my
    regular image backups isn't a problem.

    I jumped into this thread because some of the other posters seemed to think
    there was nothing in that partition except the factory restore image backup
    and that keeping it or backing it up wasn't important.

    --
    Nick <mailto:>

    Sturgeon's Law: "Ninety percent of everything is crap."

    Nick's Observation: "One person's ten percent is right smack dab in the
    middle of somebody else's ninety percent."
     
    Nick, Feb 25, 2012
    #12
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