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BDEDrive Partition at the END of the disk after an MDT Deployment... RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hey guys,

    I've got an interesting one for you. So I'm sure we all know Windows 7 puts this new "system reserved" partition called "BDEDrive" on the same disk as the OS Partition by default. I have honestly not had the time to research what it does exactly, I just assumed it worked like a bootloader in Linux. Anyway, one of our SysAdmins noticed that after an MDT image deployment this partition appears at the END of the drive. Apparently when you do a clean install of Windows 7 from a straight unmodified install disc it puts this partition at the FRONT of the disk. he's telling me this behavior could cause up problems down the road.

    Can anyone tell me why this is happening and if it is indeed likely to be a problem for us?

    Thursday, April 1, 2010 3:33 PM

Answers

  • We purposely put the partition at the end to avoid issues when booting into Windows PE where all the drive letters shift around (the BDEDrive would become C:, the OS would be on D:, etc.).

    This won't cause any issues.

    -Michael Niehaus
     Senior Software Development Engineer
     mniehaus@microsoft.com

    • Marked as answer by ZeusABJ Thursday, April 1, 2010 8:42 PM
    Thursday, April 1, 2010 3:56 PM

All replies

  • the BDE partition can be outright disabled if you have no intentions of utilizing bitlocker in the future: 

    DoNotCreateExtraPartition = YES

    add that to your customsettings.ini to disable it

    D


    -Dustin
    • Proposed as answer by Alex Verboon- Wednesday, March 14, 2012 10:50 AM
    Thursday, April 1, 2010 3:37 PM
  • We purposely put the partition at the end to avoid issues when booting into Windows PE where all the drive letters shift around (the BDEDrive would become C:, the OS would be on D:, etc.).

    This won't cause any issues.

    -Michael Niehaus
     Senior Software Development Engineer
     mniehaus@microsoft.com

    • Marked as answer by ZeusABJ Thursday, April 1, 2010 8:42 PM
    Thursday, April 1, 2010 3:56 PM
  • I had errors when trying to sysprep and capture a windows 7 reference computer and the logs seemed to note that WinPE was trying to capture D: instead of C: so I added the DoNotCreateExtraPartition parameter to my .ini file and I'm going to try it again.  A
    Thursday, April 1, 2010 4:01 PM
  • We purposely put the partition at the end to avoid issues when booting into Windows PE where all the drive letters shift around (the BDEDrive would become C:, the OS would be on D:, etc.).

    This won't cause any issues.

    -Michael Niehaus
     Senior Software Development Engineer
     mniehaus@microsoft.com


    Thanks Michael, you rock!
    Thursday, April 1, 2010 8:42 PM
  • the BDE partition can be outright disabled if you have no intentions of utilizing bitlocker in the future: 

    DoNotCreateExtraPartition = YES

    add that to your customsettings.ini to disable it

    D


    -Dustin

    Hey Dustin, do I have to put this in customsettings.ini? Will it also work if I put it in the "rules" section of my deployment share?
    Thursday, April 1, 2010 8:43 PM
  • same file, should work fine :)
    -Dustin
    Tuesday, April 6, 2010 4:15 PM
  • Michael,

     

    One problem I have found is that you can't extend the 1st partition if the BDCdrive is after it. It is not at the "end" of the drive, it is right after the 1st partition. So now you can't extend the 1st primary volume.

    Why does an Out-of-the_box install creates it as the 1st partition and MDT puts it after the 1st partition, not very consistent.

    Is there any way to move or create it at the begining using MDT?

    Where in the MDT process/script is it created?

    Tuesday, May 18, 2010 7:42 PM
  • Agreed, this is a very annoying behavior that needs to be corrected.
    Tuesday, May 18, 2010 8:49 PM
  • kSmith01

    By default MDT 2010 places the BCDDrive at the *end* of the drive. There should be no content after the BCDDrive unless you manually defined the position of the BCDDrive in ztidiskpart.wsf or used a 3rd party to tool like ghost.

    -k


    Keith Garner (KeithGa.com) - Deployment Consultant - http://deployment.XtremeConsulting.com
    Tuesday, May 18, 2010 10:22 PM
  • Sometimes we just need to extend a partition. And the BCDDrive is in the way. Why Microsoft, why do you make things so complicated?
    Wednesday, May 19, 2010 10:42 PM
  • Michael,

    Is it possible to override this placement by editting the unattend.xml file from within the deployment Workbench - Task Sequences > Properties > OS Info > Edit UNattend.xml?

    Thanks,

    Michael

     

    Monday, May 24, 2010 7:25 PM
  • Michael,

    Is it possible in MDT to detect whether or not the system is a laptop and create the BDE drive partition and if it's a desktop do not create it? We only want to encrypt our laptops.

    thanks,

     

    Tuesday, May 25, 2010 9:29 PM
  • You can use the IsLaptop and IsDesktop variables to configure different settings (like Bitlocker) on a laptop than on a desktop

    Wednesday, May 26, 2010 5:09 AM
  • Sorry, no, you can't put partitioning and formatting instructions in the unattend.xml when using MDT because it will disrupt the execution of the task sequence.

    -Michael Niehaus
     Senior Software Development Engineer
     mniehaus@microsoft.com
     http://blogs.technet.com/mniehaus

    Tuesday, June 1, 2010 6:50 PM
  • Is there any way around this, expanding drives in virtual machines is important and this does prevent windows from expanding the C: drive?

    So far all I've found is a way to have it not setup.

    DoNotCreateExtraPartition=YES

    Friday, November 5, 2010 7:41 PM
  • Although technically possible... It is not a Secure and/or Supporable scenario to run Bitlocker within a Virtual Machine (No secure way to hold the Bitlocker Encryption Keys). The Supported scenario is to Bitlocker Encrypt the Host Machine and Data Drives.

    That being said, since there is no need to have Bitlocker on a client machine, sure go ahead and disable the extra partition in your Task Sequecne with DoNotCreateExtraPartition = YES in your CS.INI.


    Keith Garner (KeithGa.com) - Deployment Consultant - http://deployment.XtremeConsulting.com
    Friday, November 5, 2010 10:38 PM
  • CS.ini is one per Distribution Share, right?  So publishing a whole different dist share just to avoid creating the second partition (in the process ducplicating and having to maintain) all of the task seq that are hosted on that share is a bit too much.

    It would be a lot more convinient if that decision can be made at the task level while executing partitioning task based on a set of conditions.

    As far as the end of the drive goes, on a VM that drive can be easily increased and then it is not the end anymore and the BDEDrive is in the way of expanding the first partition.  I am not trying to use the Bitlocker on a VM, just using the same Dist Share to build both VMs and Physical servers.

    Tuesday, November 16, 2010 8:24 PM
  • At a command line: 'bcdboot c:\windows /s c:' > Right click the c: partition and set it as active (in disk management) > Reboot > delete the BDEdrive partition and shrink/expand the C: drive.
    • Proposed as answer by JackORegan Tuesday, March 22, 2011 4:13 PM
    Thursday, December 30, 2010 10:28 AM
  • I was using MDT to install windows 7 on physical and virtual machines(vmware). I ran into the same issue when trying to extend the C drive on the virtual machines. The BDEDrive is in the way. RedRedBlack's solution worked perfectly. Thanks for that.
    Tuesday, March 22, 2011 4:15 PM
  • Worked like a charm! Thanks RedRedBlack!
    Wednesday, July 27, 2011 2:58 PM
  • Thanks RedRedBlack! That was exactly what I needed.
    Wednesday, July 11, 2012 11:04 PM
  • strangely.. the bcdboot C:\windows /s c:   does not work on 'my' VDI's...

    I run bcdboot then set C: as active in diskmgmt then reboot.. and I just get black screen..

    so something is not right.. but what?

    I've also tried bootsect /nt60 C:

    But I get access denied error...

    Ideas?


    Kindest regards, Martin

    Saturday, October 6, 2012 8:01 AM
  • Are you running command prompt as admin. Are you deleting the BDE.
    Saturday, December 15, 2012 12:40 AM
  • I have a related answer for you.  I had a Windows 7 x64 client with a virtual hard disk that was almost completely full. Below is how I delt with my primary issue...

    Primary Issue:  The BDEDrive partition was directly after the primary partition that I needed to expand.  Below I explain how you can move the BDEDrive partition around without having to do a reinstall. 

    1) I use ESXi 5.5 vSphere 5.5... but I am certain the procedure will work with other virtual servers / hypervisors

    2) Hard disks are all virtual... but I am certain the procedure will work on physical ones. 

    *Note for physical drives: You may also need to have a larger second drive and then do a dd (Linux) copy from the drive that needs to be resized to the second larger one.  Using that larger drive you will need to move the BDEDrive.  Follow the procedure below.

    3) You need either a LiveCD (Kali is what I use) or another virtual machine (Kali is what I used for this).

    4) Edit the settings of your virtual machine and increase the size of the drive you want to expand.  If you aren't able to expand the drive then try removing all the snapshots (VMware issue). 

    5) Make sure you have Gparted installed on the Linux machine that you are going to use to move the BDEDrive.

    6) Turn off the Windows 7 virtual machine with the drive that needs to be expanded and edit the settings of the Linux virtual machine and attach the drive to it.  You don't need to remove it from the Windows virtual machine.

    7) Start the Gparted program and select the drive with the BDEDrive partition.  Without going into detail on Gparted, just select that BDEDrive partition and find the option to move it.  You can slide it to the end of the drive.

    8) Check the flags to make sure it has the boot option still selected.  (At least in my case it did... and without it Windows would not boot.  Easy fix though... I just used Gparted to check that flag after a failed boot...)

    9) Commit the changes and exit the program.

    10) Remove the drive from the Linux machine and start up the Windows machine.

    11) Log into Windows and use the Drive management options to extend the primary partition as needed.

    12) This worked perfectly for me... well except that I forgot the boot flag, but I fixed that using Gparted also.

    This should show you how you can move the BDEDrive partition around if it is in the way for some reason.  Total time should be about 20 minutes or less (for virtual machine that is)  :)

    Thursday, May 14, 2015 1:30 AM