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Dell Studio 1737 Recovery Partition

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I have a Dell Studio 1737 that came with Windows Vista.  My PC has a C: drive and also a Recovery Drive which is the D:.  I bought a Windows 7 upgrade and tried to upgrade my computer to the new operating system.  Well, it wouldn't do an actual upgrade, so I just installed a fresh copy on the C drive.  No changes were made to the Recovery drive and when I go into "my computer" i can still see the recovery drive.  It says that it is using 15gigs of space on the recovery drive with 5 gigs available.  I can click on the recovery drive, but I can only see the recovery folder, but I cannot see anything in the recovery folder.

Right now I am trying to go back to windows vista because I'm having too much issues with Windows 7 and don't really care for it.  So, I tried to go through the options of restore my computer back to the factory state.  So, when its booting, I use the F8 option to go into the advance menu.  Then I select to repair my computer, then I choose my language, and enter in my user name and password with administrative rights.  I choose the PC/Windows System Restore option (I don't know the exact name, but its the option that is supposed to restore the computer back to factory).  When I choose this option, it tries to search for a recovery image (which I assume would be on the d drive) but it is not able to find one.  So I get an error that it cannot find a recovery image and there is no option for you to be able to "make" the computer point to the recovery drive.

But everytime I go into windows, the recovery drive is there and it says that its full of information, but the only thing that I can see on the drive is the recovery folder.  Even still when I do properties on the recovery folder, it says that there is information in there, but it does not show any information.

Sorry for the long paragraph, but I wanted to put in everything that I tried to see if someone may know how to make the system give me that option under F8 in order to restore my computer back to the factory default.  Any help would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks!


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  • Hello! I actually had this problem.  When you do a fresh install, it tells the bootloader that you do not have any other partitions but the windows 7 one, so the restore key wont work anymore.  Here is what you need to do.

    In windows 7, go to the control panel, click on view large icons so you get a list of everything and not their fancy interface.  Then select computer management (it should be one of teh 3 or 4 choices at the top, and i could have the name wrong), then select the option to access the hardware from the list that pops up.  You should see a box that has your two 'hard drives', the windows 7 partition being active.  Right click on the restore partition and make it active. It will give you a warning about making sure its bootable and all that, hit o.k.  Then reboot.  The computer will ignore the windows 7 partition and boot automatically to the restore partition.  Then you just go from there. 

    again sorry i dont have the exact wording as I am at work at the moment and we have xp lol! A word of caution.  I did this with an HP computer and it worked fine, however if it doesn't work your computer will become non bootable and you will have to call dell for restore discs.  Another note, all restore partitions viewable from windows will be 'blank' as everything is hidden so people dont mess up the contents inside.

  • Lonnie,


    Is the issue with the graphics?


    graphics problems with Windows 7 64bit and Intel 4500mhd


    Updating the Bioa to A08 fixes this problem.


    How to uninstall Windows 7


    This is the method to reinstall using the factory image but not sure if it works.


    Restoring Your Computer´s Software to the Factory Settings


    If that doesn't work, then you'll have to...


    How to Install Drivers in Microsoft® Windows® on Dell Systems





    What is a Dell Service Tag and how do I locate it? 



    Original poster, If you have solved your problem, can you please mark the correct thread(s) with your solution. Thanks 

    Welcome to Dell Community!

  • So, quick question.

    If I make the recovery partition "active", it forces the Windows 7 partition to lose its active state. And that's why it will boot to the recovery partition. But, is this like a one-time thing? Or does this permanently boot to the recovery partition and I basically lose my Windows 7 partition because, technically, it is inactive and I can't change that.

    Like, is there a way to have both partitions "active"? Or a way that I can have Windows 7 and the recovery partition? Say Windows gets corrupted and I want to restore the factory image. But, obviously, I can't go into Windows and change the recovery partition to go "active". Is there a way to "activate" the recovery partition with some F-key combo, kind of like it used to be?

    Thanks for the help; you've already cleared a lot of the problems I had. :D


  • lbrahim,


    Sorry not very familiar with Windows 7. Just tried it for a little while. Maybe this information will help you. There anr many links there to try.


    How to Do a System Image Recovery in Windows 7




    How to Create a System Image Backup in Windows 7




    How to Create a System Restore Point in Windows 7


    You might want to make a new thread with the question about having the recovery partition active as there are many members that know and share their information.





    What is a Dell Service Tag and how do I locate it? 



    Original poster, If you have solved your problem, can you please mark the correct thread(s) with your solution. Thanks 

    Welcome to Dell Community!

  • Thanks for the links, Rick. I'll look through those and if I can't find a solution there, I will most certainly post a few topic.



  • @tazman81, I have a question, Do you still have the recovery partition on that Dell Studio 1737 laptop?

    I know this post was posted in 2009 but I was wondering because I just deleted my recovery parttion off my drive and I was searching for anybody that may still have the partition on there Studio 1737 laptop. I need a backup image of anybodies hard drive with the recovery partition on it. I find the recovery program to restore the factory image that is on the partition. I need your help!!!

    This is the link to the recovery software - ->

    Click on Dell Backup and Recovery Manager and download the software, I hope this will help you