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Thread: How Do You Foramt Your Whole Computer

  1. #1
    tralalala's Avatar The Almighty
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    well, probably a n00b question, but how do i format my whole PC using my windows XP home edition (SP 1)??

    yesterday i reinstalled windows XP - hoping to actually rub off everything on the PC, only to find out that thats not what happened (everything was still there), and now, the PC is getting on my nerves (working awkwardly)

    so

    How do i format the PC using the windows XP CD-ROM?

    any help will be absolutely great


    tralalala

  2. Software & Hardware   -   #2
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    Take a look here.

  3. Software & Hardware   -   #3
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    https://filesharingtalk.com/index.php...opic=94175&hl=
    At the very bottom another page link.

    http://www.experts-exchange.com/Oper...Systems/WinXP/
    Here if you have a problem after I'd have a read before you format in case.

  4. Software & Hardware   -   #4
    tralalala's Avatar The Almighty
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    sorry, im a bit thick with this stuff...

    can someone post me a step by step guide to formatting windows COMPLETELY using the windows XP CD?

    thanks guys


    tralalala

  5. Software & Hardware   -   #5
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    Partitioning and Formating

    First, there are a few tools we will need. I would highly suggest you download Ranish Partition Manager from www.ranish.com/part. This is one of the very best partitioning programs I know of, and it will make short work of what could become a long, drawn-out process. We will also need a boot disk, which can be made from within Windows in the following manners:

    For Windows 9X/Me systems, go to Control Panel, and click on Add/Remove Properties. Click the Start-Up Disk tab, place a formatted disk in your floppy drive and click on Create Disk...your done!

    For Windows 2000/XP users, insert a formatted disk int your floppy drive. Click on My Computer, right click on A: drive, and select Format. Click on Create an MS-DOS startup disk, and your done! NOTICE: the MS-DOS boot disk does not contain the drivers for your CD, and will not boot with CD-ROM support. I would suggest downloading a 9X boot disk from www.bootdisk.com for this purpose. I would also suggest downloading SMARTDRV.EXE if you want to install from your HDD. This process is covered in depth a little further on.

    Now copy the Ranish Partition Manager files to the startup disk. From here on out I will refer to this program as PART. Once you have placed the PART files on the disk, and have backed up your pertinent information, leave the disk in the drive and reboot your system. If you do not have your computer set to boot from a floppy drive, you can do that when you reboot. Press F1 or DEL (or whatever key gets you into your configuration menu) and choose A: as the first boot device. Save your changes and exit. If you made a 9X/Me boot disk, you will have a couple of options...choose start without CD support. If you made an MS-DOS boot disk in 2000/XP, it will boot to the A:> without any options.

    Once you are at the A:>, type B: to navigate to your floppy drive (A: is a virtual drive in DOS). Once you are at the B:>, type part to start PART. A blue screen will appear, and you will see all the information concerning your hard drive(s). If you have more than one hard drive, you can switch to the one you want to partition/format with the F5 key.

    When you have chosen your hard drive, use the arrow keys to scroll down to the partitions listed. One at a time, highlight a partition and hit the DEL key. This will delete the partition in the program memory only...if you wish to undo this action, hit the F3 key. Once you have cleared all the existing partitions, scroll to the first unused partition slot, "1 Pri Unused", and hit Enter. In the box that opens, you have a few options to choose from.

    The first is what file system to format your hard drive in...FAT16, FAT32, Extended, BeOS, Linux, or Linux swap. There are other formats you can choose later, but they are not officially supported by PART. Don't worry, if you want to format with NTFS, there is a simple way to do this which I will get to in a bit. Choose your file system type and hit enter. Now choose your partition size. You can specify a specific size in KB, or you can choose a starting cylinder and /or an ending cylinder...then hit Enter. Choose Save now, Format now, and then either Format (which will also do a surface check - this is the long way) or Quick format without surface test, which will just write the FAT tables. Hit enter, and your disk is formatted! After this, choose a partition and press B to make the partition active. Now, you can choose to do another partition (PART supports up to 4 primary partitions, but you can reboot and it will do 4 each time), or you can press F2 to save the MBR and ESC to exit. Once you exit back to DOS, you can CTL-ALT-DEL to restart your computer, and your partition/format work is complete!

    PART is a very strong tool, and is capable of a lot more functions that what is covered here, such as copying partitions and copying entire hard drives. If you get the chance, play around with it. If you mess anything up, you can always just partition/format again using the steps above!

    Installing

    Now that you have partitioned and formatted your hard drive, you can re-install Windows. First, choose which version of Windows you want to install, and place the CD in the tray. When you install Windows, you have 2 options on how to do it...from the CD or from your hard drive.

    If you want to install Windows 9X systems from your hard drive, you will first have to make a directory for the files. Boot up with your boot disk, start with CD-ROM support, and at the A:>, type C: to navigate to your root drive. At the C:>, type md * (* being the name of the directory you wish to make). Now, type cd * (being the name of the directory you just made). Type copy D:\*.* (we'll call the CD drive D: here, but it may be different in your system), and the contents of the CD will be copied to your folder. Then type setup and follow the instructions.

    For Windows 2000/XP HDD installs, it is a very good idea to get a copy of SmartDrive (SMARTDRV.EXE). It will drastically reduce the time it takes to copy the files in DOS. Boot up to the A:> navigate to the folder or disk you have SmartDrive located at, and type smartdrv. Now type cd *:\i386 (* being your CD-ROM drive letter), then at the *:\i386>, type winnt to begin setup. This will copy the install files to your HDD, then it will reboot and start the installation process.

    If you want to install Windows from your CD-ROM, make sure your computer is set to boot off the CD-ROM. Place the CD in the tray and start your computer. For Windows 9X/Me, choose Boot from CD-ROM, then option #1 (start Windows 9X/Me setup from CD-ROM). Follow the instructions, and in 20-40 minutes (depending on the speed of your machine) you will be looking at the desktop of Windows 9X/Me OS! For Windows 2000/XP, the process is somewhat different.

    Place the CD in the tray, and start your computer. You will see a prompt to Press any key to boot off the CD...press any key at this time. You will then see a blue screen appear, and at the bottom you will see the system drivers being loaded into your computer. After a minute or two, you will come to an option screen with three options...to setup Windows XP, press enter. On the next screen, hit F8 to agree to the EULA. Now, remember when I told you that PART did not support NTFS partitioning? Well, here's the way around that. Choose the partition you want to install XP on, and on the next screen, choose Format the partition using the NTFS file system. You can also choose to stay with the FAT32 system, or leave the current file system intact. Once that is done, just follow the directions on the screen, and in 30-45 minutes (depending on the speed of your machine) you will be looking at the desktop of Windows 2000/XP OS!

    I hope this answers some question you may have had concerning re-partitioning, re-formatting, and re-installing. There are several ways and sevral programs to help you accomplish these tasks, but the way I have outlined above has been by far the easiest way for me.

    Take care, and good luck...takiwa

    This ammendment courtesy of Juleus Louis Alquizalas:

    I've read your column in Overclockers.Com, it a very informative way to basically redo all the installs and making a fresh install of Windows, specially it gets a lot of extra junk from all the programs that has been installed and un-installed over time.

    One thing that left me thinking after reading thru, you haven't touched up on the "Product Activation" part for the WinXP re-install. As we all know, you only got 30 days to use Windows XP if its not activated. Since this is already a re-install, this would mean a re-activation of the WinXP. Based on what I heard from other people (and friends) regarding this topic, it is a very time consuming and sometimes frustrating (when put on hold for a long time) when calling micro$oft tech support to re-activate WinXP. Since MS implemented this Product Activation in WinXP, I would suggest to readers to make a drive image to a CD (I prefer to use Norton Ghost) after a very clean install. No matter what you do to your drive (repartition, reformat, or even change to a bigger/faster drive and as log as only the drive is being changed) dumping a drive image from the previous fresh install will greatly lower the time and lessen the chance of a nightmare when calling Microsoft for a re-activation of XP.

    This ammendment courtesy of Ryan Lindstrom

    You talked about using a floppy to boot with. That's great, but I've had a floppyless computer for over a year now, and this is a nice little trick I know to boot to a non-bootable cd.

    If you have any old Win98 CD, boot using that, but one you get into the comand screen, exit to a dos prompt. All dos drivers for the CD rom support will be loaded, and you're ready to run anything off the CD.

    From OC.com

  6. Software & Hardware   -   #6
    peat moss's Avatar Software Farmer BT Rep: +15BT Rep +15BT Rep +15
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    Originally posted by NightStalker@15 February 2004 - 06:26
    Take a look here.
    Nice link could of used it last nite! Coached I friend over the phone on installing xp on his new puter. Endless nitghmare dual partions, reinstall's etc. I find ms-dos { win98 boot disk} easier to explain to noobs. Took him half an hour to setup bios to boot from cd

  7. Software & Hardware   -   #7
    bigdawgfoxx's Avatar Big Dawg
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    Put the Windows XP CD in your drive

    Turn the computer off

    Turn it back on and it should bootfrom CD or ask you to press any key to boot from CD. Press any key.

    Press ENTER to install windows now.

    It will ask you to agree press F8.

    Go to your Partition (Probably C and press D I believe it is.

    Now follow the steps it will ask you to push L to delete I believe.

    Then it will take you back to the main screen and have unpartitioned space.

    Press enter or something to install windows on the C: drive.

    It will ask you what type of format click "Use the NTFS File system" NOT QUICK FORMAT.

    Then let it format and it will restart your computer and then install windows..hope you can follow that
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