Re: need help formatting hard drive with win2k

Re: need help formatting hard drive with win2k

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Posted by Henry on March 08, 2002 at 23:41:36:

In Reply to: Re: need help formatting hard drive with win2k posted by rich on March 08, 2002 at 16:01:06:

: : : : : i need instruction on how to format my hard drive that has win2k on it. the hard drive is ntfs and all the other partitions are also. i want to format the hard drive and then reinstall win2k back.
: : : :
: : : :
: : : : My preferences:
: : : : 1. ERASE the drive completely with the HDD maker's disk erase utility (aka "low level format") or erase/low level format function in the maker's diagnostic package. If available, I prefer a destructive write/read/verify utility because it erases (destroys) the data, scans the surface for defects and replaces bad sectors with good ones; this is better than scandisk which marks entire clusters bad even if only one sector is bad. DO NOT use brand x utilities on brand y HDD or vice versa. The HDD maker's LLF" utility will not harm your HDD, but another maker's program might; don't become an Alpha site.

: : : : 2. I prefer FAT(16 or 32), NOT ntfs for owner of one or 2 PCs. Reason: NTFS volumes are nearly impossible to repair for the owner of a single PC running a NTFS operating system (winNT, Win2k, winxp). If you use FAT16 win may try to use 64kb clusters - that woulddn't be repairable either.

: : : : 3. If you want to do a simple partition and format (WITHOUT full HDD erase) AND you cannot get rid of your partitions - e-mail me; I have a debug sequence that will erase the mbr - then you can partition and format the HDD (you'll have to!).

: : : : Hope this helps,
: : : : Henry

: :
: : :
: : : i sent you an email. thanks for any help.
: :
: :
: : Apparently DID NOT receive an e-mail from you, but I assume you are interested in the debug procedure to delete the partition table (requires partition and format afterward). There are several incarnations floating around. This one from microsoft is explained better than the others I've seen:
: :;EN-US;q106419

: : Post or e-mail if you continue to have problems.

: : Henry

: ok the site says to Run Debug and type the Debug commands from the center column of Table 1 at the corresponding Debug prompt.

: how do i run debug, i understand the rest after that.

First off, the joke is on me - I DID receive your e-mail and answered it BUT for whatever reason my reply did not go thru. SO - regarding your IBM HDD - IBM's "wipe" utility probably would have erased enough (first 8 GB, IF it had run - might NOT run at all) to force you to partition, etc. IBM's "Zap" utility (should run) erases about 128 sectors which wipes out the mbr, partition table, FAT1, FAT2 and more - also enough to force partition, delete a drive overlay, etc. Finally, IBM's Drive Fitness Test, their diagnostic package, has a function that WILL erase your entire HDD - I don't know the upper capacity limit, but I'd expect it to work on anything IBM sells. I recommend that you get DFT even if you don't run it now, you may need it later.

The debug script will destroy the partition table, forcing you to partition, etc. Debug is a DOS utility and you run it from the DOS prompt.

Boot up to a bootable floppy (startup disk slow, but OK to use) that has debug, fdisk, format and scandisk on it and, after the system boots and you have a DOS prompt - just type "debug" without the quotes and hit enter - you will get the debug prompt (-) and you are on your way. When you reboot (to the floppy) fdisk shouldn't see any partitions.

Don't forget that there are some required fdisk, format and scandisk patches for large HDD support; check ms web site.

Hope this helps,

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