A lot of people try Linux, but for some reason, they want to and can’t go back to the comfort zone that are used to Windows. Basically, everyone tries out some Linux from dual boot, so they have Windows and Linux on the computer at the same time, and when they are starting their computer they choose which OS to boot up, but those who would still go back to Windows, generally do not know how to remove Linux, which in that case is for no reason standing installed on their computer and taking up space on the hard drive.
There are several ways how to safely remove Linux from dual boot. One of the ways is described in this blog, but in my opinion, there is a far simpler way for Windows users, which I have personally used many times without problems.
When deleting Linux from dual boot, the biggest problem is that along with the Linux partitions, Grub is also deleted, which lets us choose which OS to start up when starting the computer. On the other hand, when installing Linux, Grub is deleting the MBR, which helps to boot up the Windows system. On this basis, in order to successfully delete Linux from dual boot, we need to do two things:
- Delete Linux partitions
- Restore MBR, so Windows can boot up the next time you start your computer
We can use one tool for all of this – and that is EaseUS Partition Master Free. This software is, as its name says, free and can be freely downloaded from the official site at easeus.com. There is also a paid version of this program, but this free version is just as powerful for partitioning and modifying existing partitions and completing the job totally.
How is the procedure to delete Linux from a dual boot’s? You start your computer and log in to Windows. You download the tool above mentioned and install the standard next-next-finish method and then run EaseUS Partition Master Free. A window like this will open with the partitions listed:
As you can see from the picture, I have two NTFS partitions on my hard drive – C and D and three partitions marked as “Other”. The C partition is a system partition and is Windows based, the D partition is another NTFS partition that is for data. Please note that this is a condition from my computer – it may differ from yours.
The three marked as “Other” are indeed the partitions on which Linux is installed (root / partition, swap partition and / home partition). It is important to identify which partitions Linux is on and delete them. You should not make the mistake of deleting some partitions on which you have data – and of course, if you have some important data in the / home partition or wherever before deleting Linux, save those files and folders, because after deleting the partitions that data will be lost. Deleting partitions captured by Linux is very simple and intuitive in this program -> right click on the partition we are deleting and then Delete partition as shown in the following figure.
After clicking on “Delete partition”, a confirmation dialog will open asking us if we are sure, think again if you are deleting the real partition and if you are sure press “OK” and that’s it, the partition is marked for deletion, but is yet to be deleted. Repeat the same procedure for other Linux partitions we delete (right click on a partition> Delete partition> OK). After deleting all Linux partitions just to get the EaseUS Partition Master Free program to apply the changes, we do this by clicking “Apply” in the upper left corner of this program window – and after clicking Apply we definitely delete the partitions and after this step there is no going back .
You will have an active button, that is, blue, after deleting partitions. I am not having that situation, because I am working on a physical machine, so I would not really wipe Linux from my computer. By clicking this button, the program applies all changes and after it finishes, instead of partitions where Linux was, it will leave blank space, which will be marked as “Unallocated”. The first part of the job was done and the Linux partitions were deleted, but still, if we restarted the Windows PC now, it could not boot – so it is very important to do an MBR recovery immediately.
Recovering MBR is also a simple process, we click on the Disk that has C partition (or partition on which we installed Windows) – for me it is the only disk since there is only one disk in the computer marked “Disk 0” and then right click on it and select “Rebuild MBR” from the right click menu
Then a window will open, where in the drop-down menu we select which OS we are doing to restore MBR and there you select the Windows you are using on your computer.
After selecting the system, click on “Ok” and then again click on the “Apply” button in the upper left corner to apply the changes as well as when we deleted the partitions. After that, you have finished deleting Linux from dual boot and restored MBR and now, when starting your computer, Windows will immediately boot up without any menu or question.
Now all that remains is to format the space left unallocated after deleting Linux partitions so that you can use it in Windows to store data. We also do this in this program easily, right click on “Unallocated” space and then “Create partition”. The window as in the following image will open. Of course, it is possible to add “Unallocated” space to an existing partition, but for now let it remain in the new partition.
We choose the file system to be NTFS and as for “Create as” you choose between “Primary” and “Logical” options, but you have to keep in mind that there can only be 4 “Primary” partitions on one hard drive. You can leave everything else as it is and click “OK”, then again on the “Apply” button to apply the changes and that’s it – now another partition will appear in “File Explorer” that you can use to store the data. That’s it, Linux deleted, restored MBR, the space occupied by Linux is now a separate partition that you can use from Windows.
NOTE: The procedure I have described here has been done countless times on both my own and other machines and has been successful each time. However, I want to fence myself from asking to try any of you or if you do something at your own risk, you are responsible for any harm or damage that you suffer as a result 🙂