Problems with repartitioning a HP Pavilion Laptop

Bill Stanley bstanle at
Fri Aug 17 23:34:44 UTC 2012

On 08/17/2012 06:54 PM, Liam Proven wrote:
> On 17 August 2012 23:38, Doug<dmcgarrett at>  wrote:
>> Perhaps if you use a Linux disk and boot into the Live system, you will be
>> able to see the files on the Windows partition. If that's the case, you
>> could then copy your data to an external hard drive or a thumb drive,
>> and then you could reinstall Windows.
> This is true, but didn't the OP say he had a backup?
>>   Altho it is reported to be possible
>> to install Linux first, you will have much less trouble if you install
>> Windows first!
> Strongly agree!
>> The partitioning problems you saw were probably a
>> symptom of HP putting some repair information on a partition that might have
>> been hidden. Probably that's gone, now, or not recoverable, but with luck
>> you don't need it.
> Concur.
>> Assuming you have saved your files,
>> I would then wipe the disk altogether, using one of the various freebies
>> that writes all zeroes or all ones,
> He could indeed do that but it seems a bit overkill to me. Just
> writing 1k of zeros to the boot sector would do it, and frankly, even
> that is probably more than strictly necessary - just writing a new
> empty partition table is probably enough.
> [Thinks]
> Although that might not get rid of the bit of GRUB in the MBR... blast.
> OK, here is how to completely nuke the Master Boot Record:
> dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hda1 bs=512 count=1
> Best to do logged in as root (via `sudo -s`) or simply:
> sudo dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hda1 bs=512 count=1
> Hint from here:
>>   and then partition the disk with GParted
>> or something similar and install Windows and then Linux. Then copy
>> the Windows data files back and you're good to go.
> That is probably what I'd do myself, yes, but the snag is that Win7
> likes to create a hidden system-recovery partition&  AFAIK you can't
> do that manually.

That sounds good to me.  One small point.  Since I boot to a  USB flash 
drive, do I have to specify the haard drive (/dev/sda) and not the USB 
flash drive?  If so, how should the command be modified?

Bill Stanley

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