I was playing with TrueCrypt and decided to make a fresh installation of Windows 7 from USB stick.

Unfortunately Windows 7 installer: "setup was unable to create a new system partition"

My entire HDD has been formatted and is visible as 320GB unallocated space, but no fdisk nor Windows 7 installer nor Windows XP installer could help. (Windows XP doesn't even see the HDD, it sees only USB stick and says "not enough space to install")

It may be related to Truecrypt and pre-boot authentification, boot loader and/or MBR. As I don't have optical device I could not have created rescue disk. Right now I need a rescue of some kind, supposingly by erasing/fixing MBR using Linux live USB or using Command Promt.

Another approach is to click "repair your comuter" menu from Windows 7 installer then click "restore your computer", then click OK upon error and get access to Command Prompt.

Yet another another approach is to start computer without Linux USB I receive this:

error:unknown filesystem.
grub rescue>

Any help would be greatly appreciated as my laptop is kind of not fully operational now.

UPDATE: This was asked long time ago, ended up formatting everything (eventually it worked using different bootable USB)...


Boot from the Win7 jumpdrive, select the "Repair your computer" option. Start a command prompt, then:

list disk
select disk #
clean - This will wipe all of the partitions from the drive, including the MBR.

If it still doesn't work, you can try clean all - 0-out the sectors on the drive (takes ages, don't do this with an SSD).

  • DiskPart succeeded in cleaning the disk. But still the same error: "setup was unable to create a new system partition", trying another Windows 7 image... – Mars Robertson Mar 9 '12 at 21:26

Maybe you can make a ubuntu usb live, and use commands as below to erase MBR:

sudo dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sda count=1

this will erase first 512B @ beginning of you disk /dev/sda(carefully change it to your hdd).

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