MDT 2010 and the default partitioning

As you most likely know, MDT 2010 by default partition the drives "slightly" different than the normal Windows 7 setup. MDT creates the bitlocker (BDE) partition in the end of the drive, and the Windows 7 setup creates it in the beginning.

So, big deal?  Well it can be…. If you are for example deploying virtual machines for VDI, you often request disk space in a SAN, which can be expensive. If you request say only 40 GB per VM, and later want to extend it, you can't because the BDE partition in the end prevents you  from it.

Solution: Well since you cannot, at the time of this writing, run BitLocker in a virtual machine anyway, configure MDT not to create the extra partition when deploying to virtual machines. Use the following rules (customsettings.ini):

Priority=ByIsVM, Default




What if you already deployed machines with an extra partition, and want to delete it?

  1. In the running OS, start an elevated command prompt an type

    bcdboot c:\windows /s c:

  2. In Disk Management (or using diskpart), right-click the C: partition and select Mark Partition as Active  
  3. Reboot  
  4. In Disk Management, delete the BDE drive partition, and if needed, extend the C: partition.

Note: From what it looks, again as of this writing, the upcoming MDT 2012 release will change the partitioning back to storing the BDE partition in the beginning of the drive. The team are adding in additional logic to fix issues when refreshing machines that have multiple partitions (which was the reason for moving the BDE partition to the end from the very beginning).

/ Johan

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Johan Arwidmark

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