Restore to factory settings on Windows 7

Software & Operating Systems

Software & Operating Systems
Microsoft, Linux, Productivity software, discussion

Restore to factory settings on Windows 7

This question is not answered

Hello everyone. 

I would like to restore my Latitude E6510, running Windows 7 Professional 64bit, to its factory state.

When I bought it I noticed there are two hidden partitions, one is Recovery, the other one has no name (but in some programs it`s called OS). So there were those two hidden partitions, and one large with something like 450GB. As I do a lot of photo and video editing, I wanted another partition or two for those types of files (and documents, music...etc.).

I didn`t want to use some kind of software that would shrink the large partition into a smaller one, so I did a manual reinstall of Windows (I must have done it near 100 times already, so no problem there). In the windows setup I configured my partitions. ! I did not erase any of the two hidden partitions !

When the windows was finished with installing, I went to Computer Management (in Administrative Tools) and formated my partitions. After a while of using the laptop I noticed that the partitions I have made are not big enough for my demands, so I again wanted to resize them. I backed-up all my data on a removable disk, and wanted just to resize two partitions. Resizing was not possible because I could not delete those two partitions, and I noticed the disk was dynamic. 

So I converted it to Basic. After the conversion the two hidden partitions became visible. ! I did not erase them or change anything on these partitions ! I now wanted to resize my partitions but I was not able to do that, as I have erased them, and upon creating new ones the Computer Management would say something like "You have reached the maximum number of partitions with this type of disk". In that moment I wanted to throw the bloody notebook out through the window. Once again I did the conversion, and then was able to create new partitions. The two partitions were still visible, so I have hidden them and deleted the Letters that were automatically assigned to them.

Again, after some time of using the notebook, I wanted to use the Latitude ON function. So I installed the Reader 2.1, and found out that it does not work, something related to encrypted partition bla bla bla. Searching for a solution I came across a topic about restoring your dell to factory state. So I followed the instructions.

I press F8 after the boot, and then select Repair Your Computer, sing in, and then I can choose how to restore the computer. So I click on the last option (the icon is the same as on the Dell Backup and Recovery Manager), it seems like something is working (as I can see the circle on the mouse pointer rotating), but after 10 seconds it stops, and nothing happens.

It seems to as the Dell BRM has lost the path to the RECOVERY partition, I am just guessing that. Can anyone help me with this?

All Replies
  • The Dell factory reinstall "recovery partition" is a factory only install (not user installed or recoverable) and in most cases (all that I've seen) it if is corrupted or a different OS is installed (even a different Win 7 version) the Dell PC Restore will not work and the only option is manual installation from discs.   This sounds like what has happened to your PC with all the reinstalls and partition changes and formatting.

    I am not a Dell Employee

    Dell forum member since 2002

    Home Built PC with Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H motherboard, i7 3770 CPU,  Windows 7 64 bit Home/Win 8.1.  SSD drive.  Sonar X3c 64 bit Recordng Software.


    Member of Nashville based R.O.P.E.

  • I used the Windows 7 installation disc which came with the notebook, so it cant be that it`s not working because another version of Windows.

    And I don`t think that a partition can so easily become corrupt. I did not resize it, move it, play around with it, format, delete, change files. 

    The thing that bothers me the most is the poor support. What is the use of a recovery partition when it functions only if you haven`t changed anything?

  • Figured it out by myself.

    Opened Computer Management in Administrative Tools, and selected Disk Management.

    Right-click on the RECOVERY partition, "Change Drive Letters and Paths...". Then select "Add", and in the new window select "Mount in the following empty NTFS folder:"...then "Browse", and selec a partition where you want the files to be "extracted"...

    Opened the folder where the files from the RECOVERY partition were "extracted", select all of them, and burned the on a DVD. I closed the session of the DVD just in case.

    Restarted the computer (with the DVD in the drive) pressing the F8 button after the boot up opened a new menu. Selected "Repair my computer", and waited for Windows to load. After loading you choose your input language, select the username, and type the password.

    When the new menu opened, selected the last option (which has the same icon as the "Dell Recovery and Backup manager"), the DVD drive started to rotate, it has offered me to choose which image would I like to load, there was only one...selected it, and after 10 to 20 minutes it was all done.

    The best thing about this is that I still have my "old" configuration of partitions. I have believed it would reformat the complete disk and again make one large partition with 450GB.

    I looked for the solution on the Internet, and all of them were quite complicated. Cant believe that someone else did not try to do it this way.

    The bonus is that I also got the nice Latitude background.