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Revealing a partition; to edit the files

I have a Dell computer on which there is a hidden partition.  I recently recovered from a nasty virus which necessitated re-installing the OS.  That solved the problem but I am thinking about upgrading to Win8 now and and wonder about the space occupied on that partition; which I cannot see.  I also wonder what value all the files from Dell have, how much space they take up; or if the "capacity" shown in Properties include the space on the partition,  and wonder if the OS installs there.

is there a way to access this space; to see and edit the contents?  Is it even advisable?

I don't think I have ever accessed a Dell utility so I wonder if I need them? I wonder if I should should just format the drive then install Win 8.  OR should the OS be installed in a partition.

I probably should call Dell, but they are biased and it would probably take half the day to get through to someone with the answers.
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mikecox_
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mikecox_
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EMJSRCommented:
You are probably referring to the recovery partition. A lot of computer manufacturer's have it, DELL, Acer, Lenovo to name a few. If you have sucessfully reinstalled Windows and are not missing any drivers, then it does serve no purpose.

You can right click on Computer within the start menu and select Manage. That will start Computer Management. If you look in the list to the left you can access Disk Management. You can select the DELL partition from there and then right click and select Delete Volume. You will end up with some unpartitioned space after. If you now click on the remaining C: drive (do not touch the 100 MB System Reserved part) and select Extend Volume you can enter the unpartitioned space size and the harddrive will be extended to make use of the unpartitioned space.

If that procedure is too complicated, you can also download this software; it does the same, but with a slightly better GUI than the Windows inbuilt manager:

http://www.partitionwizard.com/free-partition-manager.html

And well, yes, your other alternative is to simply delete all partitions during OS setup (whether it's Windows 7 or Windows 8) and then let Windows recreate the partition it requires. It's entirely up to you, but no, usually you do not need to retain the DELL partition since you can download the drivers from DELL's website.
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Darr247Commented:
They used to use a hidden partition that would be UNhidden when the MediaDirect button was pushed from an Off condition, but they have not used those since 2007 or so... if your computer actually has a hidden partition, Seagate/WD/Samsung/et al make utilities for their drives to expand the available space to original capacity, ignoring what the MBR says.
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mikecox_Author Commented:
make utilities for their drives to expand the available space to original capacity, ignoring what the MBR says.

How do I do that??
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mikecox_Author Commented:
The manual process did work so I dl'd the program and installed it.
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mikecox_Author Commented:
Under disk managemen "Disk 0" Basic, 465.6 GB Online; shows 3 sections: 63 MB Healthy (0), 15.00 GB Unallocated, and OS (C:) 450.70 Healhy (System, Goot, Page file, Active Crash Dump, Primary Pertition)

If I right click
      63 MG I get "Help"
      15.00 BG New simple vol, Properties, Help.  
      OS (C) I get a list of options, including "Shring Volume".  Delete vol, and Extend vol are greyed out.

I gave up on that approached and dl'd the program and succeeded.
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EMJSRCommented:
Hm, odd, but yes, I generally use Partition Wizard if I have to do anything like that myself. The first option was the Microsoft way which obviously doesn't work all the time. Glad I could help!
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mikecox_Author Commented:
oops, I jumped the gun!

The partition labeled: 15.00 GB, 0 used, status "none", unallocated, logical doesn't have a delete option!

I deleted the first one, what will happen if I delete the "C:OS" partition?  Will I get the 15GB back or will it crash and burn???
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Darr247Commented:
I've clicked Unmonitor
<-- over there

Good luck.
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