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Broke my system (sort of) Windows 10

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ANIMASANA

Member
Joined
May 7, 2002
So, as most of you know I'm basically an idiot.

Having that said when I built my system I installed Windows 7 twice and it ended up not being installed on my SSD. (Took me awhile to figure out that the USB 3.0 ports required drivers before you can use them.) As of now I have three partitions because I tried putting the disk in and running installation again to try and fix it, being dumb as I am.

When I start I get a screen that looks like this

Windows 10
Windows 7
Windows 7

Windows 10 is the OS that actually works but somehow it depends on the SSD partition and I can't seem to take ownership of it and format that disk and/or reinstall anything because I'm clueless.

I would like to get Windows 10 one partition on the SSD 250gb drive and have the 500 GB platter drive be for storage and stuff non gaming related.

I have no clue how to do this. Can someone help point me in the right direction?

Thanks!

-Dumb idiot that doesn't know much about operating systems
 

c627627

c(n*199780) Senior Member
Joined
Feb 18, 2002
Good question. You are in the right place, we will help you.

Take the SSD to another computer (make sure it is either Windows Vista/7/8/10 - not XP) and completely nuke it. Remove all partitions and format it completely so that only one empty partition exists on the SSD. If you don't know how, just ask.

Now take the empty single partition SSD back and make sure NO OTHER hard drive is connected to the computer.

Now install Windows 10 on that single partition SSD.



After you finish installing Windows - only then connect other hard drives and use them for storage.
 

caddi daddi

Godzilla to ant hills
Joined
Jan 10, 2012
THIS^^^^^^^^^
windows is very sloppy and if you have more than one drive connected while installing it just LOVES to install itself all over the place.
I remove all but the target drive from the case.
what happened to you is normal.
 

RJARRRPCGP

Member
Joined
May 30, 2004
THIS^^^^^^^^^
windows is very sloppy and if you have more than one drive connected while installing it just LOVES to install itself all over the place.
I remove all but the target drive from the case.
what happened to you is normal.

And XP is worse in a similar regard, will install to a random drive letter when there's a card reader plugged in. I'm required to disconnect the card reader before installing XP!
 

BoundByBlood

Maybe Something Cool?
Joined
Sep 27, 2009
Location
MS Gulf Coast
You got some good advice here Animasana so try what they say. If for some reason you have only one hdd connected and install Win10, but after the install you're having problems setting up multiple partitions when reconnecting the other drives then there is a problem with your Win10 setup files.

Just to be safe before you get ready to install Win10 with only the primary hdd connected I recommend using Microsoft's media creation tool found here and setting up a bootable USB to use for your install. Using USB is the preferential method for installs and it is also faster than disc.

Also, with the MS media tool you will be getting the most current windows setup files with more of the latest updates packaged together from the MS server. You have to be connected to the internet when using the tool. The tool isn't difficult to use and it's pretty self explanatory, but if you do want to use it and still have any questions just ask.
 
Last edited:
OP
ANIMASANA

ANIMASANA

Member
Joined
May 7, 2002
Thanks everyone much appreciated. I have a USB adapter for the SSD. My plan was to take this to my GFs Windows 10 machine and format it then start from scratch with only that disk installed. I'm creating the USB bootable disk now with the media creation tool.

Any links that are helpful for formatting a HDD in Windows 10? I can probably bumble my way through it but my guess is if I connect the drive I want to format with USB to the other computer, take ownership and format it then I should be ready to reinstall Windows from USB.

Also, since I upgraded from Windows 7 pro, can I use my Windows 7 product key for activation? Do I need to worry about that anymore? it seems like everything with Windows 10 is tied into the web but I'm not sure.

Thanks again!
 
OP
ANIMASANA

ANIMASANA

Member
Joined
May 7, 2002
Oh... is it possible to do the formatting on a Mac? or will that screw things up?
 

BoundByBlood

Maybe Something Cool?
Joined
Sep 27, 2009
Location
MS Gulf Coast
I'm creating the USB bootable disk now with the media creation tool.
I'm pretty sure you selected the create media installation for another PC option when you ran the tool. When you get to the screen for language, architecture and edition be sure to uncheck the box which says Use the recommended options for this PC. If you don't unselect it then it will create an installer compatible for the machine running the tool and not necessarily the machine where you will actually be installing windows. Just wanted to point that out in case you overlooked it.

Any links that are helpful for formatting a HDD in Windows 10?
You don't really need links since it's not difficult. You will do all formatting and partitioning within the windows installer when you are ready to install the OS. When you get to that point when you're ready to install Win10 on the drive just post asking for help and someone will outline the steps to help you out.

You will also take ownership once the OS is installed and you are in your desktop. Again, if you need help just post.

can I use my Windows 7 product key for activation? Do I need to worry about that anymore?
No, a Win10 installer will not accept a Win7 product key. If you wanted to use that key you would have to install Win7 and then see if MS will still give you the free Win10 upgrade. If you're going to use the Win10 installer from the media creation tool then you will need a valid Win10 license key. If you don't have a Win10 key then check ebay for cheap key listings or google "windows 10 license key sale". Just make sure you buy a Retail key and not OEM.

Finally, with any key you buy online call Microsoft just to make sure it is valid and the reseller didn't a pull a fast one on ya.
 

c627627

c(n*199780) Senior Member
Joined
Feb 18, 2002
Until July 2016, latest Windows 10 build installation media will accept Windows 7/8 legitimate keys which qualify for the free upgrade to Windows 10 offer.
Old Win10 installs did not - but new ones do. ;)