How to Remove the Windows Recovery Partition

Normally the steps to delete a partition are as follows:

  1. Right-click the Start button.
  2. Click Disk Management.
  3. Right-click the partition you wish to delete,
  4. Choose Delete Volume.
  5. Select Yes when warned that all data will be deleted.

Unfortunately this doesn’t work for Windows Recovery partitions. The Windows Recovery partitions are protected and so right clicking on them has no effect at all.

To delete the recovery partition follow these steps:

  1. Right click on the Start button.
  2. Click Command Prompt (Admin).
  3. Type diskpart.
  4. Type list disk.
  5. A list of disks will be displayed. Note the number of the disk which has the partition you wish to remove. (If in doubt open disk management and look there, see steps above).
  6. Type select disk n(Replace n with the disk number with the partition you wish to remove).
  7. Type list partition.
  8. A list of partitions will be displayed and hopefully you should see one called Recovery and it is the same size as the one you wish to remove.
  9. Type select partition n(Replace n with the partition you wish to delete).
  10. Type delete partition override.
  11. The recovery partition will now be deleted.



Command to reboot the Alteon device

How to reboot a Alteon device from CLI interface?

Alteon is a legacy Nortel brand, which is currently supported by a company called Radware.

Here is the command, a little weird, use it at your own risk:


On the Radware website, the KB says “The command /boot/reset does not reset the device to factory default.” Here is the link:

Email disappeared in one click?

Since upgraded to the new Outlook – part of Office 365, version 1803, I found quite a lot difference. Previously was the column width issuePST issue, yesterday there is another one.

Trying to clean up and sort out dozens of emails on Monday after a busy weekend, I normally flag those important emails to prioritize. But wait a second, why those emails disappeared when I click on the flag? I know Outlook 365 is a bit slow and trying to re-sorting all the time, but the emails I clicked actually went to Deleted Items. What happened?

When I hover my mouse on the flag, it indeed tells me “Click to delete the item”. Seriously?!

Next, when I expand the column a bit. Ha! I saw the delete sign.

Why the heck do they bundle the flag sign and delete sign together? And, when the column is compacted, the default action is “delete”? I don’t see the logic here.

These kind of UI/UX issues in new Office are strange, huge difference. Not like the Ctrl-F thing, these are hard to explain. As a user, I will be cautious. I guess you should too.

The Skype keypad Dilemma

Since the Unified Communication (UC) concept became reality, we have seen a major player Microsoft made its UC products evolved from LCS to OCS, to Lync, and merged with Skype. Recently, as part of Office 365, Skype for Business has a new name called Teams.

As a user, once Skype has been installed on the workstation and integrated phone capabilities, we saw the traditional telephone set being removed from the desk including the legendary Nortel Meridian phone many of us have been using for decades, we knew that the change is inevitable.

But if we make phone calls more than 10 times a day, we will soon find a problem – the layout of the keypad on the phone and the layout of the computer numpad are not the same. The numbers are in different position.

Here is a traditional telephone keypad – numbers ascend from top to bottom, with star and number signs.

Below is a standard numpad on a computer keyboard – numbers ascend from bottom up, there is no number sign. Be very careful if you blind dial a number starts with 3-7-7. If your fingers still remember the phone layout, you will need to explain a bit on the phone with the agent.

So, unless you click the shortcut in an email or meeting invitation, if you need to dial the phone number on the keypad, be careful. You have to retrain your brain to treat the phone numbers the same way as you key in numbers in a spreadsheet.

Moreover, when you key in the conference number you need to decided how to key in the pound key (number sign) at the end. I believe most of us will use a mouse to click on the soft keyboard.

Add more complicity to that, you will notice the letters on the keys are also different.

Who to blame? I think that would be the inventor of electronic calculator. Without research, I guess that was where the computer numpad inherited from. I don’t know, maybe the phone keypad was invented first after people were tired of rotary phone dial. The standard organizations like IEEE didn’t foresee the necessity of united numpad.

Hide Avatar in Skype for Business meeting screen

When you are in a Skype for Business meeting, if only people attend the meeting in audio, that’s fine – you will see attendants pictures or just names if they don’t have a photo or avatar set up under their account.

But if someone has a screen to share, all those ‘avatars’ will go to the right bottom corner, use quite a big chunk of the screen space. Unless people have their webcam turned on, you may see their faces and emotions, otherwise, you want to turn those static photo or avatar off or at least hide them.

Here is the solution, these small avatars actually have an official name – Video Gallery. When you hove your mouse over your own avatar, there will be a small half-transparent arrow-and-corner sign, click it, the whole area – Video Gallery will undock, then you can just minimize that “Video Gallery” window.

Be careful when you upgrade OneNote

I primarily use OneNote 2013 on my personal PC. Last week, I was thinking, Microsoft has made OneNote free forever, why don’t I just upgrade OneNote to 2016 and take advantage of the new features (if there is any).

So I searched and downloaded the installation file from Microsoft. As suggested, if you are not sure what version to use for your CPU, choose x86: setuponenotefreeretail.x86.en-us_, is the file I got. Then I installed it on my PC, along with the existing full pack of Office 2013. Lucky me, it did not replace OneNote 2013 I have.

What’s the problem?

When I run OneNote 2016 the first time, it asked me login, using my main Live account. No issues, it opened all my OneNote files in OneDrive. But, when I tried to open an OneNote notebook that only existing on my local hard drive. It gave me this error:

So, I can choose either upload this notebook from my hard drive to Microsoft OneDrive, or page a fee to activate the Office 365 subscription, although it says OneNoteFreeRetail and such promises somewhere on their web site.

I have O365 subscription, it just not linked to my main Live account, and I don’t want or need to buy another subscription. Should I upload everything include my personal archive or more sensitive notes to the cloud? Neither. So keep the old version and be cautious when you do upgrade.

Here is an article talking about similar issue on Office 2019, but I think the 2016 version has the same, as I described above.

A thread in Reddit, people talked about this already 2 years ago:

Of course, you can always use the online version for free, but you have to upload it to the cloud. Next time, if there is a major upgrade, I would export all my notes to PDF first.

Outlook column width not stay

Since started using the new Outlook on my new laptop, I found it’s a little bit annoying that the column width in the mail list pane did not stay. Every time after I set the comfortable width of each column so I can easily read and spot the email I am looking for, if I go to a different folder and come back, all the column width set back to default. This never happened in earlier versions, it might only apply to the latest versions 2016 and 365..

So how to fix that? There is a new “Automatic column sizing” option in Outlook. You can find that by right-clicking the heading in mail list pane and choose “View Settings”, then “Other Settings”. From there, you can uncheck “Automatic column sizing”, and do more customization in “Format Columns…”

I checked on my other PC using Outlook 2013, it has the same option but it keeps user setting intact instead of restoring to default every time.