Any downside to merging partitions in a 128GB SSD?

I have a Dell 7010 running win7 pro.  It has a 128GB SSD with a 13GB recovery partition.  I'm inclined to think that space would be better used if I merged it into the main partition.  Any opinions?  Any problems or gotchas trying this?
Thanks,
Al
Alan SilvermanOwnerAsked:
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smckeown777Commented:
Bad idea...that's the recovery partition - which means should your laptop develop a major issue where you can't boot Windows/repair it etc...you then can't recover to factory default image...

Personally I'd leave it alone. What software are you going to use to do this merge? Need to remember the boot loader(i.e. partitions that disappear can cause windows to not boot etc after you complete this operation if you really do go ahead with it)
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Alan SilvermanOwnerAuthor Commented:
Probably something like easus or partition magic after making the ssd slave on another computer. Back in XP days those spare partitions always seemed a waste because it wiped your data too, and who wanted that.  If this partition is just for Dell recovery I think the space is more important.  But if Windows 7 needs it, that is something else
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drfrank319Commented:
I'd leave it in there, although you could burn recovery disks and merge them if so inclined. I've never had problems merging partitions, except it sometimes takes a really long time. If you want max space, you can turn off hibernation if it's on--hibernation eats up disk space equal to your RAM. Set hidden/OS files to 'not hidden' to make sure it is purged from C: root.
Also, if you're taking image snapshots every so often, you can run Disk Cleanup and purge all restore points except the latest one. This can sometimes free up 20GB or more. But don't do this unless you have images of your OS partition or your machine is running extremely well.
Also, purge your recycle bin regularly.
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Alan SilvermanOwnerAuthor Commented:
It's small form factor so there's no room for other hard drives. It's primarily a computer for business and most businesses don't need much hard drive space. The computer is there to run programs and create documents, which take up little space.  Still, after you take out the operating system and the recovery partition that doesn't leave an awful lot of room. It would be nice to be able to add that 13GB.
Thanks,
Al
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nobusCommented:
i would check what's taking up the space - and free some
many PC's have lots af space occupied by pictures and movies - which don't change, so easily can be archived on external media
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Your best idea would be clean reinstallation of Windows on this drive.
Look in Windows Disk Management - which of your partitions are marked as "boot" and which one is "system"?
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drfrank319Commented:
If you have an imaging process in place like PXE booting or even snapshot image with Acronis or Paragon backup software then you wouldn't need the recovery partition.
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Alan SilvermanOwnerAuthor Commented:
If you have an imaging process in place like PXE booting or even snapshot image with Acronis or Paragon backup software then you wouldn't need the recovery partition.

That's been my take for years.  I remember when HP first created these partitions.  When a computer got in trouble you'd boot into it and they'd say, "Oh by the way, we're going to wipe out all your data."  Now why would anyone (who is sane) want to do that?  (going off on another tangent, remember when they would partition hard drives into two pieces.  you'd get a computer and find the customer had the first partition full and the second one was empty. great idea HP!)

I will be selling this computer.  The idea is that it would have more use to the customer with the extra 13GB of useable space.  The 107 GB (out of 128) isn't much these days. I know that I'd rather have the space.  In terms of backups I always advise my customers to let me get/put in another drive and run automatic backups.  

I'm just not sure it's worth my while to mess around with this. There are always things that can screw up and if this screws up I could be five hours down the road setting the system back up for sale.
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Give me the answers to my questions I will lead you the road you want.
You can delete this partition but only when it is not used.
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nobusCommented:
i am using an 160 Gb SSD for almost 5 years now
it uses only 71 GB
that's why i suggested you look into what is using your disk space - and free some up
if you're selling the system, the restore partition will be very handy for the BUYER !

here some disk space analysing tools to help :  http://www.techsupportalert.com/best-free-disk-space-analyzer.htm
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drfrank319Commented:
You identified the main gotcha--the recovery partition is a safety net and if you take remove it you might end up with a big headache if the backups process fails. I bought a refurbished Samsung laptop a year ago and upgraded the HDD to a 256GB Samsung SSD. I chose to leave the recovery partition in, and would have even if it was 120GB. I think the peace of mind of leaving it in outweighs the benefit of extra space.

Also, I don't think space will be a great problem unless they install large games (20-30GB each) or work with huge files or some sort, maybe video editing.
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Alan SilvermanOwnerAuthor Commented:
nobus,
This is how it came right out of the box.  The C drive has 81 GB free out of 105 GB total.  That seems close to the right amount of space used for the operating system and program files. It's still not a lot of free space but that's what you get when you get this computer with an SSD.

If I get rid of the recovery partition there will be 95 GB free out of 118 GB total.  Actually I suppose I could just wipe that second partition and give it a drive letter.  So long as the customer knew how to use that for data if they needed it, they would have more space.  But if it's too much of a pain I'll just leave it the way it is and sell it that way.

Thanks,
Al
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smckeown777Commented:
Also since you are selling it you really need to leave it as is...when warranty issues arise and customer calls Dell and no recovery partition that leaves another hole that is hard to get out of...for the sake of 13GB I would not even bother...different if it was 30+GB...
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nobusCommented:
uninstall all unwanted bloatware - or applications
and  let the disk space be a concern to the buyer - maybe he uses external disks, so it is not a problem.
But the recovery space is not big enough to make a real difference
and if he wants to delete it - that's always possible
but you can't turn it back on, if it is removed....
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Alan SilvermanOwnerAuthor Commented:
Thanks to all for the good advice.
Al
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