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Thread: BitLocker and resizing partitions

  1. #1
    Soundwave
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    Lightbulb BitLocker and resizing partitions

    Hello everyone , this is my first speech after reading many posts on this forum who have taught me a lot about T100TA Asus. Now I need help on a topic already discussed in the forum in various posts but for me not clarifiers, because there are different versions of the T100 each with unique characteristics.

    I state that I have the T100TA_DK023H with Windows 8.1, with the latest version of BIOS (v.207) for the T100TAS motherboard, the processor Z3775 and the disk SanDisk SEM32G that has three partitions:
    • 100 MB (UEFI)
    • 20.90 GB (C: \ drive with the operating system encrypted with BitLocker)
    • 8.00 GB (Recovery Partition)
    Unlike other models, in my there is no external ROM used for the recovery partition. I added a micro Evo SDXC Samsung 64GB fully functional.

    I would like to delete the recovery partition to expand the partition encrypted with BitLocker and thought I'd do the following:

    1. Save the recovery partition on a USB key and then delete it
    2. Decrypting the partition C: \ (turn off BitLocker)
    3. Expand the partition C:\ to 29,80GB
    4. Encrypt the partition C: \ (turn on BitLocker)

    No problem for the first step, but before continue I need a support that I am not been able to get, despite extensive research on forum and the web.

    I know that the machine have the Trusted Platform Module (TPM 2.0) which is also active in the bios. I saved the Recovery Key BitLocker but before setting "turn off" BitLocker in the "PC Info" section in the "device settings" (step 2), to obtain later the resizing the C: \ partition (step 3), I would like to know from someone who has already successfully done this operation, what are the more corrected and safe steps to have a system with encryption restored (step 4) on this device.

    In the Control Panel, under "encryption device", you only can back up the recovery key and no other operation. Is this normal?
    From Microsoft I learn that, for the version of Windows 8.1 that is installed in our T100, device encryption is enabled automatically after the first access to the Microsoft account (for certified devices InstantGo). This not calms me for the success of what I would do.

    I would like to know if using the BitLocker option "pause protection" instead of using the "remove encryption" you can resize the partition (step 3). I think not because I understood that the suspension still leaves the encrypted disk even if it uses a simplified key (To manage partitions I will use "Easeus partition manager").

    In the "PC Info" section, in the device settings screen, currently is only visible the option "Turn off" and do not know if after the steps 2) and 3) will change to "Turn On" to enable the automatically encryption or is must manually perform some other operation (I saw in the "system32" folder is present "BitLockerDeviceEncryption.exe" ...).

    I apologize for the long post. Now I hope that it will open a comparison of the opinions of those who have more experience to help people like me.
    Greetings to all

  2. #2
    Senior Moderator Meritorious
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    Hey Pippo, your query is way over my expertize, but I just wanted to welcome you to the forum. Some of our more knowledgeable moderators and members will probably insert themselves into this thread shortly!
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  3. #3
    Starscream
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    Welcome to the forums Pippo .

    Good post, I have read your whole post, and can answer you mainly from this, what you are trying to do or have thought to do is actually not what you see with the Windows 8.1 provided with T100TA but you are correct too, firstly I want you to tell me why you are seeking Bitlocker? It is mainly used for Enterprises. Bitlocker is available in Windows 7 'Enterprise, Ultimate' & Windows 8, 8.1 'Professional & Enterprise Editions' only not on the version with which T100 comes, Microsoft has changed that in the normal Windows 8.1 versions, what you are seeing is correct, on this T100TA Windows 8.1 32bit normal version. You do not get full features of Bitlocker itself apart from the default, which is mainly a 'Drive Encryption' and by default activated on all systems for Partition C: Drive for T100TA and any Windows machine running simple Windows 8.1 editions without the Pro & Enterprise editions provided, the machines user must logon with MS Account having Admin Privileges or join the machine to the domain, if an MS Account is used, a recovery key will be backed up to Microsoft's servers and encryption will be enabled, if a domain account is used, a recovery key will be backed up to the Company's Active Directory Domain Services servers and encryption will be enabled. If a local account is used, Device Encryption won't be enabled.

    Since that's said, we only have this by default on this version of Windows. Since the 'Drive Encryption' is enabled, eventually you will see TPM in bios too, We don't have any advanced features and the actual Bitlocker features which seen otherwise on Pro and Enterprise editions except this one feature. You can backup the recovery key nothing else from control panel and have Drive Encryption enabled/turned off.

    Now coming to the point of expansion of Drive C, which I presume is your primarily goal? You can try to expand the partition too by using Disk Management or by the 3rd Party tool when you have cleared out the recovery partitions/other storage spaces. Device Encryption and the recovery key, has nothing to do with it , the more safer methods this version of OS can provide, is already provided to you, your C Drive is encrypted before expansion, it will be encrypted after expansion. You are not required to turn off the Device Encryption which is active by default, well it's up to you basically, but I don't recommend it as it's not required to do so.

    2015-02-04 15_56_04-Device Encryption.png


    2015-02-04 15_59_55-PC settings.png

    Do not get confused with Recovery Partitions/Recovery key/Device Encryption,
    1. T100TA comes with a default recovery partition from Asus, which when reset will take you back to factory settings as it came out of the box, with pre-loaded drivers and so forth. Deleting this very Recovery Partition can be done, and people have done it, you will find threads here too of such and you can expand C with this 8 GB or any size it allows you with, however I will advise you to simply make a recovery of your current state of system using a simple USB stick or Asus Backtracker/System Image and so forth.
    2. This recovery partition, which I wrote about above, has nothing to do with the Recovery Key/Device Encryption that is for the (C Drive), these two are different and in no way interacting with each other. This Recovery Partition is from Asus to reset the device back to factory settings. You should back it up on a USB stick before deleting it. Try Asus Backtracker.
    3. You can delete and use your 3rd party tool to expand the C (Drive) Volume if it allows it, but make sure you have a recovery USB stick ready as explained above to revert in case a disaster happens, there are people who have also failed and in-turn managed to delete the whole C Partition along with the OS while expanding, hence had to start from scratch or some simply went with installing a fresh OS and deleting all partitions from Windows Boot Loader setup to begin with.
    4. You do not need to turn the Device Encryption off on C to expand or decrypt (leave it as default) if you really want to turn off you can but that's really up to you decryption after turning off the encryption can take some time too so it's your call, your main issue is the 8GB (Recovery) if it's even writable/readable/accessible and so forth, and that is what you should be trying to figure out, on how to access/delete, expanding it to C.

    Your system is DK023H 32GB, mine is DK024H which is 64GB I have the same partitions as you in my T100TA but my Recovery can be copied by default, if your 3rd party tool/disk part can delete those recovery partitions which you see in Disk Management, you can safely expand the space gained from them to C, don't touch the Drive Encryption, and keep it as it is by default (i'll leave that to you), but be careful not to mess up the existing C Drive partition. I might be wrong but I think your 32GB has a read only 8GB Recovery Partition not so sure, but I have read it on some threads, where some users had 8GB on their 32GB T100's read only by default, you need to cross check this on your device. I would start by having my Recovery copied to a USB stick, as well as have a System Image backup just in case, then try any 3rd party tools to delete and see if I can even, and I can refresh if it messed up C drive.

    Have a read through the below thread it has been discussed in detail how to go about it (copy recovery to stick/deleting recovery partition etc.) (Ignore the Drive Encryption on C - up to you), if you want to see how more people tried doing it,
    Recovery Partition and recovery USB

    Official, Bitlocker's Drive Encryption Guide by MS,
    https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/...).aspx#BKMK_S1

    Official Bitlocker's Drive Encryption FAQ by MS,
    https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/...(v=ws.10).aspx

    How-to-geek more info on Device Encryption,
    Windows 8.1 Will Start Encrypting Hard Drives By Default: Everything You Need to Know

    Asus Backtracker (expand utilities),
    ASUSTeK Computer Inc. -Support- Drivers and Download T100TA

    Goodluck and all the best, hope you got an overview at least if not some of how it works.
    sculptedstylus and pippo like this.
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  4. #4
    Soundwave
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    Caster, thanks for your reply.
    I'm Italian and I have some problem in fully understand what you wrote (looks like a machine translation …).
    I need a little time to understand and deepen the topics you have covered.
    I understand that you have seen what is my primary objective: the expansion of the c: drive.
    The BitLocker encryption for me represents only one obstacle possible in achieving that goal.
    See you soon, as soon as I will clarify my ideas, I will answer you.
    Caster likes this.

  5. #5
    Soundwave
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    Hello, after days of study and many attempts, I have not been able to achieve the goal of eliminating the recovery partition. It seems that on my machine this is not possible because of the firmware sealed, the 207 version of the BIOS.

    I'd like to replace it with the 313 version but I'm afraid that will block completely the machine, and for the moment I have not yet done.

    To begin, I report what is currently present in my drives:
    0-Easeus.PNG

    As we see the disks are GPT (not MBR) and there are various unallocated partitions that did not exist before the restorations that I did.

    As suggested by Casper (thanks ), I realized that BitLocker is not influential for the elimination of the recovery partition.
    I tried to run the removal with encryption turned on or off, with various software (Easeus and Paragon) but the result was always the same.

    In both cases (BitLocker on or off), after removing the recovery partition I get a blue screen with the message "Your computer has encountered a problem and needs to be restarted".
    1-IMG_20150205_144315-errore.jpg

    Later, another message warns that "it is necessary to restore the PC" because "a necessary device is not connected or is inaccessible".
    1-IMG_20150206_235124-ripristino3.jpg

    Therefore I concluded that the firmware realizes that is missing the recovery partition and refuses to run.
    Note that changing the name of the recovery partition (from Recovery into RecoveryXZ), I did not have a system crash and then I could see the partition with the name changed. For those who want to know more, this is the content of the partition:
    2-PartRipr.5.jpg

    Note that the process of restoring to factory also clears the contents of the SD eventually leave into the slot (why?!). Subsequent attempts to retrieve data stored (using some software specialized like Easeus and Recuva) were useless. The micro SD was wiped, and now there are three partitions of type GPT (not MBR) and one folder hidden "System Volume Information "in the only NTFS partition active (the other two are small and unallocated -> see first image).

    I installed Windows Assessment And Deployment Kit (ADK) to create a WinPE Environment on a USB pen drive thinking it can be used after the crash of the system to see if and what had changed. On my machine did not work while on other notebook, the same WinPE-key USB working properly (why?!).

    To preserve the loaded applications, I created one operating system image (with Paragon Boot Media Builder) that I had saved in a micro SD ... which then has been deleted during the restoration process (!!).

    I tried, unsuccessfully, to change elements of the BIOS that may affect the operation of the firmware "inflexible", to disable protection on the system configuration.
    4-IMG_20150207_003116-security-bios.jpg

    Given the ambiguity and lack of details in the various posts where I read that someone managed to delete the recovery partition, I can only speculate on the UEFI firmware version 207 that it is the cause that prevents removal on my PC.

    Before groped to replace the BIOS on my machine with version 313 and risking a halt, it would be helpful to have the following information:

    1. Someone with a PC with BIOS v.207 has upgraded to version 313 BIOS?
    2. For those who have tried, it was always possible to remove the Recovery partition on the machines with the v.313 BIOS?
    3. It is true that the recovery partition on the machines with v.313 BIOS may, depending on the type of T100, be located either on the external ROM or RAM-drive system?
    4. What are the models of motherboard installed in PCs with v.313 BIOS?
    5. In my T100 is mounted a motherboard "T100TAS" version 1.0. Does anyone have the same model with the BIOS v.313?
    6. In the event that the replacement of the BIOS would cause the arrest of the unit and you cannot get into the BIOS to use the utility "Easy Flash", what possibilities there are to restore the old BIOS?
    7. On machines with Bios v.313 (or v.307 and earlier) the program BackTracker (v.308) also displays the choice "Delete the recovery partition"? On my machine there are only choices "Back up the factory recovery image" and "System Recovery".
    5-Backtracker-2.jpg 5-Backtracker-1.jpg


    To read the model and version of the motherboard, I used the app CPU-z with which you can also see if the CPU is overclocked, mine has a variable clock until 2,42GHz.
    6-CPU-Z2.jpg 7-CPU-Z3.jpg

    Finally, I hope that a moderator of this forum, may find it useful to launch a collection of information among all users of the various versions of the T100, to detect and frame the individual peculiarities of their machines.

    Greater clarity could help those who want to deepen the arguments.

    Thank you for your patience in reading this long post.
    Pippo
    Last edited by pippo; 02-10-2015 at 07:36 AM.

  6. #6
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    Asus support page-T100 Downloads:

    207 is the only bios listed that had (T100TAS) in brackets. I think this means it is the current firmware for that model.

    A Google search for "delete recovery partition T100TAS" -- several links, this procedure below seems simple, I don't know if this is the best method (I don't have a T100) Caster may be able to help you further.

    Free up 8GB without really trying - Windows Central

  7. #7
    Soundwave
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    Thanks for the reply, I had seen that link.
    It is not said what is the type of model T100 which it refers, however the post is too old to be relevant with my PC.
    Moreover, that thread has not any answer from someone who has done it successfully .....
    The fact that Asus tell that the 207 is the BIOS for the T100TAS, not rule out that it can also work the BIOS 313, at least I hope so .....

  8. #8
    Starscream
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    Pippo, it’s good you have tried and good to know all of your Bitlocker queries are explained in my last post. It looks like you are having T100TAS 32GB version which has the bios 207 latest provided by Asus, while I am using T100TA 64GB which has the bios 313 latest provided by Asus. Keep in mind, if you go ahead and apply the Bios 313 version which is for TA on your TAS machine, you can easily brick the whole device and bring it to a stand-still which I don’t recommend at all, it is not intended for your TAS machine nor will it work on TAS models.

    The reason this is not covered for all models extensively, is mainly, because of many reasons, Starting with ‘Not all users have space issues, Not all users wish to delete their Recoveries, Not all of them are technical enough/to do so, Not all of the 32GB/64GB units are in common apart from model, Not every user wants to use a USB to factory reset, whenever there is a problem with their device.’ Asus is pushing a lot of different models and a lot of variants across different regions, which basically means it’s impossible to track each and every product version/variations/disk configurations which they are releasing, best bet for checking something like this is Asus themselves. Lastly, what you will however find is people regardless of any model/specific common, trying to do it even if it’s a TAS, TAM, TA, TAF or region specific model that’s the thread link I gave you before in my last post which has very valuable information, concerning recent posts from users and their experiences based on model specific configurations, It contains all of them.

    From your post, this leads me to believe your 8 GB Recovery is read only and does not even allow deletion, as a guess. But if you followed the thread and the user posts with the link I gave previously in my last detailed post, you would see that, a lot of 32GB T100 users have posted some ways to see if their 32GB can be writable (allowing it to be deleted) having similar configurations as yours, which makes me to believe you haven’t read and gone through all the posts there, otherwise you would answer 90% of all of your own questions .

    Go through the pages in it’s entirety. All of them will answer your queries, it’s very obvious don’t mix up Bios in this, and complicate things, it’s easier and not that hard, if the methods provided there works for you then great, otherwise no other place I know here has any better details on such.

    Seeing if you don’t find the delete option in the Asus Backtracker, there’s an official page by Asus on 32GB models, leading me to think more on how many 32GB versions there are,
    https://www.asus.com/support/Knowled...-6AD5F2F3D391/

    The best thread which can help you again for your goal, is the one I posted previously (link below),
    Recovery Partition and recovery USB
    Proud Owner of Asus 100TA-DK024H, Asus ROG G750JZ, Asus TF700
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  9. #9
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    Are you removing the reserved or EFI partitions as well? Or just the one marked recovery?

    That also looks odd on the sizes. On my T100, as well as other Windows 7+ machines I've seen that have had factory restore partitions on them (and UEFI) there is a 100MB EFI parition, a 900MB recovery partition and an 8GB restore partition in addition to the main windows/user accessible parition.

    The EFI partition MUST be kept, the 900MB recovery partition maybe/probably should be kept and the restore parition can be chucked. The 900MB recovery partition is just the bit that the machine uses when you reboot in to recovery mode. If therei s no restore image on that 8GB partition, it can't restore anything ,but you can still preform some repair tasks and some other stuff in the recovery screens without the restore partition (as well as inserting restore USB drive or SD card at that point. Otherwise you have to go in to the BIOS and force it to boot off SD/USB).

 

 

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