Recovering Windows after Linux install

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Recovering Windows after Linux install

Postby viv85 on Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:05 pm

So I had convinced my friend to try Linux Mint 14 Cinnamon on his netbook instead of Windows. He wanted Windows wiped out and the only thing he wanted to leave was the Windows Vista x64 recovery partition in case he wanted to restore factory defaults.

All was well but now he wants to sell the computer and he wants to use the recovery partition to reinstall the factory defaults. He has no factory recovery discs and no cd drive because it's a netbook.

GRUB does show the Vista recovery partition. When it's run from the GRUB menu it starts fine but has errors during the process because unless it's started from the Windows bootloader it can't see drive letters the way Windows needs to.

So I imaged my own Vista x64 installation disc onto my usb flash drive (I made sure it was bootable) and proceeded to try to boot from it on the netbook to run the Startup Repair tool so that it would restore the Windows bootloader and wipe out GRUB.

Well, I can't get it to boot from the flash drive now.

F12 to the boot menu, select USB FLASH DRIVE, Enter. Starts GRUB.
Restart. Change BIOS boot sequence. Starts GRUB.

It jumps to GRUB no matter what I do, and I HAVE NOT altered the bios, other than boot sequence.

It's very frustrating because it's not the flash drive, it works perfectly on any other computer- and I've booted to the flash on the netbook before about 200 times.

Now I'm getting desperate. Any suggestions? Mint is running fine.
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Re: Recovering Windows after Linux install

Postby viv85 on Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:12 pm

Oh and I can see the flash drive fine from within Linux on the netbook, so I know it's not the usb ports.
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Re: Recovering Windows after Linux install

Postby MtnDewManiac on Sat Mar 16, 2013 4:40 am

I might be wrong, but I believe that you do not need - or even have the ability - to use the GRUB menu in order to boot into the recovery app. AfaIK, it's handled by the BIOS (or some other low-level gizmo). The paperwork that was included when your friend bought the thing should have stated which key (or, possibly, set of keys) es would need to depress after powering up the device. Failing that, a search ought to find it.

The whole point of the "hidden" recovery partition in computers is so that the user can get back to a working (+/-, lol, you said it was Vista? :lol: ) OS in the event of a major failure, right? So it would be illogical for the process to require regular software booting. IMHO.

What is the brand and model number (or "number") of the device?

Personally, I'd set up some flavor of linux on the thing if it was mine and I was selling it, especially since it is a netbook. Or if I was dead-set on installing one of Bad Billy Gates' OS on it, I would choose Windows 8 - the time I played with it, I remember thinking it probably would look far more at home on something with a small screen than a real laptop or desktop.

Regards,
MDM
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"Change should never be your goal but, instead, only a means to reach your goal."
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Re: Recovering Windows after Linux install

Postby usbtux on Sun Mar 17, 2013 7:37 am

I think you should press F10 as the computer boots to take you to the recovery section may take a little googling.
http://goo.gl/DXKgM LinuxMint tutorials.
Running LinuxMint 17 Cinnamon/KDE/XFCE
http://goo.gl/WFu0u Installing Mint - the screen cast videos.
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