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bstreyle2 bstreyle2 is offline
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Default Reinstalling Windows XP and hidden partition - 02-01-2009, 10:54 PM

Reinstalling windows xp.
This post is for my daughter in CT. as was given a Dell Mini9 for Christmas. She began having software issues (couldn't download programs etc., getting error messages related to (Make sure the Cryptographic service is running on this computer.) and having problems connecting to some web sites (usually when hitting a link on a site). Since she didn't have any programs to speak of on her computer, we decided to reinstall XP following the instructions in the manual. She did and apparently she put XP on the hidden partition that contained drivers and diagnostic programs. So she now has two xp programs on her computer and when she turns the computer on it asked which one she wants. The original is not good since it does not work very well and the second does not work since she (and I) don't know how to install the drivers. She does have a recovery CD for the operating system and a CD for her drivers etc. Can anyone give any advice as to what we can do. Format the hidden partition so she will only have the original XP and then try and reinstall XP on it? How do we format or eliminate this hidden partition since we can't see it? What do we do with the hidden partition? is there a way to put the contents of the driver CD on that hidden partition? if not, I guess the best thing then would be to eliminate it. If we delete that partition, will the C drive take up that space? How do we get that space to become usable again? Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated.


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pr6srm pr6srm is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2009
Default Re: Reinstalling Windows XP and hidden partition - 02-02-2009, 12:11 AM

Hi Bruce,

Firstly - you haven't lost anything by overwriting the hidden partition. This contains the Dell Diagnostics function, which is also contained on your Dell System Drivers DVD which came with your system.

It sounds very much as though a clean Windows XP install would be of use, especially as it doesn't appear you have any software of files on the system. Obviously, if you have, do make sure you back them up first to a SD card or USB key.

When you reinstall windows (using a USB CD drive is easiest but there are plenty of FAQs on these forums for using a USB key to do the same) you are presented with the disk options asking where you wish to install XP. Simply delete all the partitions listed until there are none, then create a new partition using all the free space. This will give you a nice clean XP install.

Follow the guides on this site for reinstalling all the drivers correctly. []

If that proves too much trouble, follow the guides on this site to contact a Dell CSR to obtain your system images, which will restore your system to factory fresh! []



Dell Mini 9: Obsidian Black | A05 | Win7 / OS X 10.5.6 Dual Boot | DellEFI 1.1 | 2GB RAM | 64GB RunCore 70mm SSD | 4GB SDHC | Vodafone HSPA | 0.3mP webcam
Dell Mini 9: Obsidian Black | as above except: XP Pro SP3 | 250GB USB HDD
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