2 parter HP PC Q

Greetings! I’ve recently purchased a new computer, a HP m8020n. It has 2 hard drives in it, one partitioned into 2 drives (so I’ve got a C, D and E hard drive). C of course houses Windows & my other programs, E is a big empty drive which I use when making backups of my DVDs, and D houses the restore program to set the PC back to factory settings.

I was wondering if anyone might be able to help me out with a couple questions. First off… I like to reformat my PC every 3-6 months and I was wondering if anyone knew if the restore program would whipe the E drive when it reset the C drive, or if it ignores E. In other words, could I copy my reports & such over to the E drive and restore, or would I have to copy them off to some external media (with the goal to keep them once the restore is over of course).

On a related Q… Does anyone know how I can modify the restore? I found a couple sites on the net explaining how to do it for a Dell PC, but it looks like the HP system might be set up a little different. The PC came with a Student Evaluation version of Office 2007 (so I just got like Word, Powerpoint, OneNote & Excel) but I have the Enterprise version (with Access, etc) and would like to have that there automatically instead of the student version and to have Windows (& Office, etc) updated as of last time I updated the restore spot (which will be the first thing I do after restoring & updating is update the restore files).

thanks much for any help you can offer!

the recovery process SHOULD only affect the C: partition. I’m about 90% positive on that, but please check any manuals or if you have to call HP and ask.

i’m not sure how you’d go about editing the recovery partition itself. I usually just nuke the darn thing and recycle it into more hdd space :slight_smile: HP computers come with a utility and instructions for burning recovery discs from that recovery partition. You can find this somewhere in the start menu with the rest of the preinstalled junk that comes with it. before you attempt to mess around with the recovery partition I recommend burning those discs to keep as a backup just in case. the system only gives you a limited number of burns for the recovery disc. it might only be one, maybe 2 so make sure you put them in a safe place.

if I were you I’d do a fresh install (or in this case recovery since HP doens’t send you an OS disc which annoys me like crazy) then install anything you need (like your office enterprise edition), uninstall anything you don’t need and create an image of the drive using something like Acronis TrueImage or a similar backup program.

In many ways a fresh drive image is more useful than the ability to do a recovery since you have a head start with all the apps teh way you want them. obviously as you use the system and install/uninstall new things that image will become outdated, but it’s still easier than starting from scratch (in my opinion at least)

sorry i couldn’t offer any help about playing with the recovery drive, but at least there’s another option for you to consider. also, it doens’t have to be one or the other. you can do both. the more recovery options you have the better if something goes wrong!

Lottsa good info from reasonsnotrules. Here’s what I know from my daughter’s
2 1/2 year old hp pavilion.
You can only burn the recovery disc (dvd) one time and I totally agree; it’s absolutely absurd that these OS discs are not provided.
I had this experience when purchasing my wife’s dell laptop about 16 months ago.
I had to posture and threaten, but got 'em at no charge.
Dell had even gone as far as removing the application utility to create a bkup disc a few months prior.
Talk about idiocy!

I think you’re confusing restore and recovery.
Restore is an xp utility. It’s more likely to be used to return the system back to it’s last known “good” configuration or a specific time. It doesn’t “clean” the hdd
HP offers 2 modes of recovery:

  1. Non-destructive Recovery: this will result in no data loss approximately 90% of the time according to hp support.
    (I’ve actually done this twice on my wife’s 5 yr old hp…worked just fine). This really does nothing in terms of cleaning house.
  2. Destructive Recovery: will basically re-image the hdd to the original factory config…just like the day it was shipped. All user data will be lost.

The recovery disc essentially provides backup in case of a hardware failure, ie., it is a bootable disc.

Reasons is correct, any recovery or reformatting will not affect other hdds.

Sorry, I don’t know anything about modifying either recovery process.
I’m a little skeptical that it can be done, but that’s just my opinion.

Hope this helps.


Hi reasons…good to see you back… :wink:

Hi aekdb
I have a HP 763n and I added another internal HD to it and have reformatted it many many times the only drives the will get changed is the C and the D drives your data on your E drive will not be touched, BUT if you install any programs on the E drive they will lose any regisrty entries they have other then that all data will be save