Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Formatting A System, Active, Primary Partition

  1. #1


    Posts : 8
    Win8 Pro

    Formatting A System, Active, Primary Partition


    I performed a clean install of Windows 8 Pro on Drive C. Drive E is marked "System, Active, Primary Partition." I want to format this HD and use for backups. However, my system will not allow me to format. I downloaded "Unlocker" and "deleted" folders and files, but the amount of free space doesn't change and I've not been able to empty my recycle bin. On the Internet, some have suggested that Win 8 puts boot manager on a different partition. This doesn't make sense to me. Any thoughts? I have GParted but don't want to screw up boot manager, etc. If I can't delete files or format there's usually a good reason. But I'd like to clean up this partition so I can use it for backups. Thanks.
    PRSRNS

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Arnhem, The Netherlands
    Posts : 1,412
    Windows 8.1 Pro x64 Media Center Edition


    Hi and welcome to Eightforums.

    Disconnect the E-drive phisicaly and boot your PC. This will force Windows to forget about the system partition on E. Shut down the system after succesfull booting.

    Then reconnect your E-drive and boot again ==> Now you must be able to format the entire E-drive.

    Another option is to diconnect the E-drive and connect it to another pc and format it. Although the first option should work.

    Tip ==> When doing a reinstallation make sure only the C drive is connected. Connect the other drives AFTER the installation.

    Good luck!!
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    Posts : 8
    Win8 Pro


    Thanks Der Snoober, but drive E is an internal drive and disconnecting, though possible, is not totally convenient. Is there a second choice. What mechanism is preventing the format? Is there something on the internal E drive that Win 8 is trying to protect? Could I successfully format with G-parted? Finally, if I do eventually succeed in formatting E and bootdrive is gone, will the Win 8 be able to reinstall bootdrive? Thanks for your patience. PRSNRS
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Arnhem, The Netherlands
    Posts : 1,412
    Windows 8.1 Pro x64 Media Center Edition


    Hi PRSNRS,

    if I understand you correct your E-drive is a partition on the same drive as the C-drive?

    Hmmm, that changes the problem a little bit.

    Why your E-drive contains some systemfiles I don't know. I know from experience to disconnect all drives except C when reinstalling Windows. Otherwise it will put some systemfiles onto the other drives.

    In my experience I've never had any problems when formatting those drives. Windows can still boot and will put the system files onto the C-drive eventually.

    So what you can try is this ==>
    * Make sure you have a Windows rescue/ installation disc and backuped your C drive data.
    * Format the E drive with use of a formatting program. Or just download a Linux-ISO-distro and format that way.
    * You can also try deleting the partitions on the drive via Windows Drive Manager.
    * Boot your pc.
    * Windows SHOULD startup normally. Because all the necessery files are on C.
    * Just in case Windows will NOT start up normally (what I really doubt) you can boot via the rescue/ installation disc and perform a repair.

    If I were you I'd try this.

    Good luck!!


    Ps. We all are patience here, helping people is the meaning of this forum!
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    Posts : 5,592
    ME, XP,Vista,Win7,Win8,Win8.1


    Welcome to EightForums.

    Can you post a screen shot of Disk management?

    Screenshots and Files - Upload and Post in Eight Forums
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Posts : 1,875
    Windows 10 Pro Prieview x64


    I'm not going to add value here perhaps but I had a similar issue.

    I upgraded from 7 to 8 and some random (non-existing) drives appeared in Defrag and System restore with names like {/?/Volume\....} In Disk management they were not shown.

    In the end I did another clean Install and the problem went away.

    My only guess is that the upgrade makes assumptions about hidden (Q:/) partitions and what to do with them.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    Posts : 8
    Win8 Pro


    Der Snoober,

    Thanks again. My E: drive is a separate drive - NOT a partition of the C: Boot drive.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #8


    Arnhem, The Netherlands
    Posts : 1,412
    Windows 8.1 Pro x64 Media Center Edition


    Quote Originally Posted by prsnrs View Post
    Der Snoober,

    Thanks again. My E: drive is a separate drive - NOT a partition of the C: Boot drive.
    In that case just delete the partitions one by one and then format the drive. Or format it using a Linux-ISO or by connection it to another pc.

    For support I give you my life's quote ==> "Trial and error, but then without the error please!"
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9


    Posts : 8
    Win8 Pro


    Thanks.

    PRSNRS
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10


    Arnhem, The Netherlands
    Posts : 1,412
    Windows 8.1 Pro x64 Media Center Edition


    Given the fact that you've marked the thread as solved I assume it worked?

    That's great to hear!!!

    And you're welcome ofcourse.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Formatting A System, Active, Primary Partition
Related Threads
Hi everyone, I want to create a second primary partition on my first harddisk(disk 0 look at picture) 29235 from the free space there in the extended partition(view screenshot). Now my problem is that whenever I want to create a new partition by right clicking and...
Primary and Extended Partition in Drivers & Hardware
I would just like to check and make sure I have this correct. I have the following HD and feel they should be setup like this. Disk 0 C: - Primary D: - Extended Disk 1 F: - Extended Now this is where I am not sure
Effects of formatting a partition? in Drivers & Hardware
My Windows partition has a corrupted file system. I've tried fixing it, so far nothing works. At this point I'd just like to format it so that I can shrink it and use some of it's space on another partition. I have to format it before I can shrink it because it is corrupted. Would formatting it...
Hey..I was having a problem since my computer shows "windows cannot delete the active system partition on this disk". Please help me out and guide me on how to delete the partition on which i have windows 7 installed. Here is the screen shot : 18578
Hi, My system was dual booting Windows 8 and Windows 7. I have deleted the Windows 7 option from the msconfig of Windows 8. Now the system boots automatically into Windows 8 with no problems. However, I am confused if I did it the right way. If I delete/format the Windows 7 partition...
17344 This is my basic spread prime contains a win 7 installation(active) halo contains a win 8 installation(boot) and is a logical partition What I need to do is: format prime and combine it with halo , this will be my boot and active keep logic and halo as it is an my logical drives I...
Read a few threads that are similar but not quite the same. See the image below. My HP Laptop (dv6) has 4 partitions, including: System (MBR) C: Windows 7, D: (Recovery) and Hp_Tools. 3811 Tried this quick guide Quick Guide to installing Windows 8 Consumer Preview in dual-boot - AfterDawn...
Eight Forums Android App Eight Forums IOS App Follow us on Facebook