Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Deleting OEM service partitions?

  1. #1


    Posts : 28
    win 8.1

    Deleting OEM service partitions?


    Hey yo!

    I have a Dell 7537 running win 8.1.
    When I bought the computer it came with windows 8.0 and the HDD has a few partitions on it, all hidden except the main one. The partitions are used for recovery, to "refresh" windows, because the computer doesn't have a CDROM. So the files for reinstalling windows are basically an image on a separate partition.
    Since that win 8.0 is very old and I'm planning to install win 10, and I already have a separate image (on a separate HDD) of the main partition (C:\) after I've setup everything, I don't really need the old original image and would like to delete all those hidden partitions and join them to the main one.
    So I'm guessing after I do that I won't have the refresh windows option which is OK because I'll just use the backup I've made with the newer windows if anything goes wrong.
    My question though is can I delete all of the hidden partitions? Because I'm not sure if they're all just for recovery, or do they have some stuff relating to booting windows. If I delete those partitions will my windows boot up?
    Here's a few screenshots of all the partitions that I want to delete and their content. The ones that I want to delete are partition 1,2,3,4,6 and 8. Partition 5 is C:\Windows, and partition 7 is just data which I've created.

    Click image for larger version

    Click image for larger version

    Click image for larger version

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    Click image for larger version

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Posts : 2,690
    Windows 3.1 > Windows 10


    partition 1 = required EFI partition - do not delete
    partition 2 - is dell diagnostics = safe to delete
    partition 3 MS reserved partition - do not delete
    partition 4 - windows 8 recovery tools - safe to delete (should copy "windowsre" folder to another disk)
    save partition 5 OS
    partition 6 - windows 8.1 recovery tools - safe to delete = no OS recovery option anyway
    save partition 7 Data
    partition 8 factory recovery images - safe to delete (saved the "Dell" Folder to another disk)

    by saving the windowsre folder and the dell folder _ you can create factory recovery media - if ever needed
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    Posts : 28
    win 8.1


    Thanks, man!

    A few questions though:
    What does the dell diagnostics partition do? As far as I remember there was some option to do hardware diagnostics without booting windows. If it's that then I would want to keep this.

    And since I don't ever intend to go back to the factory installed win 8.0, is it OK to delete windowsre and dell folder too?

    Also, are you sure about deleting partition 4? Because when using Paragon Hard Disk Manager, every time I make a backup image of C: it also automatically includes partition 1,3 AND 4 in that image.
    Last edited by bob marley; 25 Jun 2015 at 09:14.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Posts : 28
    win 8.1


    OK, so I deleted partition 6 and 8, created them into partitions, and then attempted to merge them to (D, a restart was required which happened automatically. And it seems a MAJOR **** UP HAPPENED!!!!!!! See screenshots below:

    Click image for larger version

    Click image for larger version

    Click image for larger version

    All of my data appears to be missing. Drive is showing up as empty. It just says, restart to finish operation but I already restarted once more, nothing's happening. My entire life is on that drive. When I was setting up the wizard it was showing that it will merge them without deleting anything. PLEASE TELL ME THAT I CAN FIX THIS!!! I'm gonna faint.......
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    Posts : 2,690
    Windows 3.1 > Windows 10


    Not sure about the partitioning program you are using, but usually you MOVE the partition you want to save D forward on the disk - leaving the unallocated freespace at the end of the disk , then extend the partition to fill the freespace - not sure about merge..

    try this program to recover the partition > Hard Dive Recovery Software to recover data from hard drive in 3 steps.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Posts : 28
    win 8.1


    Fixed it by deleting new 830 GB partition and restarting. That started automatic repair of old partition. Lost NO data. Merged partition successfully after that.
    Thank you very much for your help!
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    Posts : 28
    win 8.1


    KYHI ,

    One question, you probably know this:
    If I create the new OS backup image in an acceptable by windows format like .vhd or .vhdx, can I use it through the windows refresh/reinstall interface, instead of the paragon boot media? Will it ask me to locate an image that it can work with? And if yes, which should I choose, vhd or vhdx?
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

Deleting OEM service partitions?
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