Re-Enabling HP Recovery Partition


New Member
A friend of mine has tried to install Windows XP on a Vista pre-loaded HP Pavillion notebook, thinking it would automatically dual-boot. When he couldn't, he told me to fix it. :tongueout:

To keep it short, I managed to boot Vista normally using my own Windows DVD. However, he installed XP onto the recovery partition and that partition doesn't appear bootable anymore in neither BIOS (pressing F11), nor EasyBCD. The files are all there but not as a bootable partition. And he didn't even create rescue disks.

All in all, I can't creat rescue disks, and I can't use the partition for rescue. Hence, is there an EasyBCD trick to make that bootable again?

Sorry for my confusing message and thanks a lot in advance....

P.S. AFAIK, that partition uses WinPE to load itself.


Mostly Harmless
Staff member
Hi Emre, welcome to NeoSmart Technologies.

If he installed Windows XP to the partition.. did he clear it of it's existing data?

And, more importantly, what is your goal right now: to get XP to boot, or the recovery partition?


New Member
Hi, Computer Guru,
My goal is to restore F11 and boot functionality to HP's restore partition. He had installed XP without formatting. So, the data seems intact. I think, I I might (or might not) have been able to use EasyBCD, if I knew the bootloader path. But I couldn't make heads and tails out of it.

And I don't want to boot into XP for now. When (and if) I solve this problem, I plan to resize the main partition and do a clean install of XP. Thanks to generous people around here, that doesn't seem like a hard job. :tongueout:

If nothing works; (If need arises) I can just install a pirated copy of Vista, instead of the need for restoring. But, I wouldn't be too comfortable with that.

Thanks a lot....


Mostly Harmless
Staff member
What's in/on the recovery partition?


Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
Should you ultimately need to, I don't think there's any moral, ethical, practical or legal reason why you can't restore Vista on your friend's system using your Vista DVD, as long as you pick the same level of Vista (home premium, ultimate or whatever) and use your friend's key to validate it.
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New Member
What's in/on the recovery partition?
As you probably know, computer companies don't give out operating system DVD's anymore and place system install files on similar partition. Then, as BIOS loads pressing F## boots into OS install and rescue mode.

As for installing any pirated copy with a legit key; AFAIK there is a sticker underneath the notebook with the key but I need to verify that. I will look into it when need arises.

Thanks to you both for your insights....


Mostly Harmless
Staff member
No, I mean, what files are on the recovery partition?

I can't help you boot into it if I don't know if...
a) it's a WIM file
b) it's a WinPE extracted filesystem
c) it uses a custom bootloader

Add a Linux (GRUB) entry selecting that partition as the one where Linux is installed to and reboot and try that entry. If the case is "c" above, it'll work.


New Member
Sorry for my misunderstanding. I gave the notebook back. Hence, I can't check. However, as far as I know, it is a WinPE extracted FS. When I tried with this (possibly wrong) info, EasyBCD couldn't detect a bootloader.

I might try the Grub method, by installing PCLos, when we meet. I might even convert him. :??

Thanks for your help....


Mostly Harmless
Staff member
Ah... Oh well, for the record: EasyBCD can boot you into it, you just need to assign the partition a drive letter w/ a partition manager; then tell EasyBCD to use that letter.
recovery Partition

Hi ! It seems like i ahve also successfully messed up my laptop's recovery partiton. Could you please tell me how to see which vista partition type i have and how should i set up easy bcd entry to at least let me boot into the console to create recovery discs?!?!:??
Enabling My Hp Recovery Partition

Hi all,

i bought a few days ago a pavilion dv6-1320 notebook, and i could not make the recovery disks
gave me errors, at that time i could see the recovery partition as (D) but i dont see it anymore.
I tried several times to do disc creation with no sucess, recover partition can not be found.
But with partition programs i can see her and what is inside....
Any ideas to help??