I bought a new laptop with a hard drive recovery image on partition "D" and a pre-installed Windows 7 on "C" drive.

I split drive "D" into 2 new partitions, E and D.

Now I want to install a fresh copy of Windows 7 using this recovery image. Will this erase all my data on D and E?

Will I end with my first factory settings of a C drive and another empty D drive?


I depends on what brand the Laptop is and how the recovery system is setup. On most laptops it will give you two (or three) options at the start of the recovery process.

One will be to reinstal the OS (and usually any aditional bloatware) without changing your partitions.

The other is completely factory out of the box state, picking this option WILL return the partition scheme to how it was when you got the laptop.

Edit: This are the instructions from the user manual for you model laptop (page 66). It will pay to back up your data just in case regardless of how safe this method should be:

  1. Make sure the computer is turned off.
  2. Press and hold the 0 (zero) key on your keyboard while powering on the computer.
  3. If your system offers a choice of Windows 7 32-bit or 64-bit operating system, select one at this time. If not, skip to step 4.
  4. A warning screen appears stating that when the recovery is executed all data will be deleted and rewritten. Click Yes to continue. (This will be the message you saw.) Toshiba recovery wizard warning
  5. When the Toshiba Recovery Wizard opens and the Selecting a process screen displays, select Recovery of Factory Default Software and then click Next.
  6. The Recovery of Factory Default Software screen appears. Select Recover without changing the hard drive partitions.
  7. Click Next. A confirmation message displays reminding you that all data on the C: drive will be lost during the recovery process. (Note that it doesn't mention other partitions.)
  8. Click Next to begin the recovery.
  • Also, if you've stuffed with the recovery partition, there may be no recovery image any more... or it may not work. So watch for that... – Windos Aug 16 '11 at 0:49
  • My laptop is Toshiba satellite L655. After reading your answer, I tried the recovery process, selected language then win7 image then an alert msg said it will earase ALL data on my HD ! is there any way I can recover only C ?? I hope there is any tips around the web :( – Bialy Aug 16 '11 at 1:01
  • @Bialy, I have edited my answer, in short the warning is a blanket warning regardless of option you pick later in the recovery. – Windos Aug 16 '11 at 1:21
  • THANKS ALOT for your great help :) ... I did never hear of that "0" button before , and It really did the trick. what I used before was the pre-installed app "toshiba recovery media creator" which I used to mount my HDD recovery image to 2 DVDs , and It was the reason I think for that one option total format that I mentioned before. I did never think the laptop has a built in function for the recovery process like this. THANKS AGAIN – Bialy Aug 16 '11 at 1:47

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