Keep existing partitions with Riprep

When using Riprep/RIS, a nasty result can be that you lose your existing data. This tip will show you how to prevent this.

This tip was submitted to the Tip Exchange by member Bas van der Lubbe. Let other users know how useful it is by rating the tip below.

Using Riprep/RIS for deployement is great -- but a nasty result is that you lose your existing data on the local machine. For example, you use the `C: drive' for the OS, and the `D: drive' for data -- one disk with two partitions.

With Riprep you have only the answer file to manage your partitions with the `repartion' key. With this key set to `NO', you have the `C: drive' with the old size but the `D: drive' is eliminated. With the key set to `YES', the whole disk becomes one `C: drive' and instead the `D: drive' is eliminated.

The trick that will save the `D: drive' is as follows. First, set the repartion key to `NO'. Before you dump the Riprep-image, you have to make the partition you want to keep hidden. The tool I used for this is `Gdisk32' (it comes with `Ghost'.) The command is: `Gdisk32 1 //Hide //P:2' (1=disk, //P:2=partition 2).

Now you can dump the Riprep-image. After that is completed, you then reverse the process with the command: `Gdisk32 1 /-Hide /P:2'

Now you have you new OS installation with the old but valuable data partition intact. If you have a CD-Rom present, the partition can be represented as the `E: drive'.

This was first published in September 2002
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