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-   -   Moving from ubuntu to Vista, need help!!! (

sugarnips 01-01-2010 04:11 PM

Moving from ubuntu to Vista, need help!!!
please read entire post before flamming me!!! i have allready posted this on ubuntu community forums, but i am kinda desperate...

i run a dell inspiron 1521 laptop, and 2 weeks ago i went from Vista to Ubuntu. What i shoulda done was splitting my hard drive and having them both on my pc. What i ended up doing was taking the whole disc space simply because i absolutly hate windows and loved the general idea of linux where software should b accessible to everyone and free of charge.

Unfortunatly, its been a major headache ever since, spent a week trying to set up my wireless and graph card, and now, 2 weeks into it, my biggest addiction, world of warcraft, is really starting to itch. ive tried to follow guides, im getting errors allong the way, and for now, just dont feel like going through another troubleshooting war with my pc.

My general plan is, getting Vista back, and then installing Ubuntu because i still love it, and use linux for the rest of my general activity.

when i launch the recovery disc, i cant select a hard drive to install it to.

i know this is a weird request, but i know someone will be able to help me!

GoinEasy9 01-01-2010 04:20 PM

When you installed Ubuntu it formatted the partitions to ext3 or ext4 format. You'll probably have to reformat the hard disk as NTFS format, or whatever it is that Vista uses (Sorry, don't have a Vista machine handy to check) before the recovery disk can recognize the disk again. I think that the recovery disk assumes you have Vista installed and it works to fix whatever is broken (Sorry again, I haven't had to do a Windows recovery in years, thank you Linux). If you have the Install disks they might work better than the recovery disks.

If I'm mistaken, someone please correct me.

EricTRA 01-01-2010 04:21 PM

Hello and welcome to LinuxQuestions,

I don't know quite exactly why your recovery disc wouldn't detect the harddisk unless of course it's unable to detect the filesystem you installed on it.

I would suggest you download GParted LiveCD, burn it to CD and boot from that. Delete all the partitions you have (assuming your recovery disc is a CD and not a partition on the harddisk).

Next, download Hiren's BootCD, burn it to CD and boot from that one. I advice that one because I don't know if the Vista recovery CD will be able to launch a recovery console to allow you to run fixmbr. On the Hiren's BootCD there's a utility fixmbr. Run that to repair your MasterBootRecord.

Then try booting from your Vista recovery disk again.


Kind regards,


sugarnips 01-01-2010 04:35 PM

im sorry, i meant the reinstallation DVD. and when i put it in, it runs, the only thing is when i try to select where i want to install vista, im getting both hard drives greye'd out and cant install it on either of em..., sorry if i had caused confusion.

EricTRA 01-01-2010 04:46 PM

No problem whatsoever. Most likely as said also by GoinEasy9, the filesystem format being ext2/ext3 or other Linux filesystems isn't recognized by Vista so you'll have to either delete the partitions using the GParted CD I advised or use it to reformat them to something like FAT32 or NTFS which can be read by Vista.

Again, your data will be lost in doing so!

Kind regards,


sugarnips 01-01-2010 04:56 PM

sure will, ill probably be doing what you posted, i dont care about loosing everything, nothing usefull is on my comp atm, just a little scared to do it because i have absolutly no clue what either of you are talking about o.O, im going to do a bit of research on those 2 apps you poster,

thorkelljarl 01-01-2010 05:36 PM

Try one of these...

Here are two live partitioning tools, either of which you can use to erase your existing partitions. They both use GParted which has a graphic interface and should be easy to use.

Here is a quick guide on dual-booting.

This might prove useful in case of trouble.

thorkelljarl 01-01-2010 06:25 PM

If you have trouble with Vista...

I am no expert in restoring Vista, but you might have to recreate the partition that the original Vista was found on in order to have your Vista restoration work.

The restoration utility may demand the previous partition table. You can use PartedMagic/GPartedLive to partition the disk, or that part of the disk where Vista was, to NTFS if this is the case.

With reference to where Vista was, you might check for any hidden partitions in addition to the Vista partition. Remember that you can open a terminal in PartedMagic/GPartedLive and use the command "fdisk-l" to read the partition table before you do anything critical.

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