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I have been trying to reformat my drive on my computer, not a "windows XP reinstallation" but just straight out format the disk. after it gives me the warning of erasing everything on the disk, a window pops up after I click format saying, "windows cannot format this drive. quit any disk utilities and make sure that no windows is displaying the contents of this drive. then try again." Please! help me! I cant find any way to stop running these programs. I have uninstalled everything that I can including disk utilities and what not. I tried doing the "reccomended reinstall of XP" but it deleted nothing. Please help!

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Last Post by harish1
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Hmmm... take this suggestion only as a suggestion. I'm sure that someone else will be able to respond in more detail.

I have no idea why you're running into this problem, but whenever I've needed to reformat (I used to do it quite a bit) I would use Linux.

Again, this is only a suggestion, and if you screw up your disks by doing this, I'm not responsible - just so you know.

The linux fdisk utility is great IMHO and gives you the ability to assign any partition ID to a disk partition. Use the linux instalation disk to use fdisk and create your partitions ("type m for help") I know for Win2000 the partition ID is "c" for Win95=>32bit formatting. You'll have to change this by "toggling the partition ID" (I think "t" from the help menu) because by default in linux fdisk the partition ID is set to 82 (linux native).

I hope this helps and that someone might further add to this or to the root of your current problems.


-gkd

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Hmmm... take this suggestion only as a suggestion. I'm sure that someone else will be able to respond in more detail.

quit any disk utilities and make sure that no windows is displaying the contents of this drive. then try again." Please! help me! I cant find any way to stop running these programs.

Yeah *kicks self*

now that I re-read the post it makes more sense. It sounds like you're trying to reinstall windows from windows. You might not want to use linux fdisk to repartition your hard drive if this is the case, unless you want a completely new installation of win, which it sounds like you want.

I guess you'd need to make more clear exactly what it is you're trying to accomplish. You said that you want to "straight out format the disk", but it sounds like you're doing that while windows is running.

I'm not an XP user, but I dont think that this is possible in XP, it's not in any other version of win that I've used. Caperjack is right, you have to format your drive from a startup disk, which can either be a win bootdisk - or, like I like to use, a linux disk. you can partition with linux, but you'll probably want to format that partition at the time of installation with the XP disk.

While youre at it though, you might want to make a linux partition and install it also?

just make sure you back up everything you dont want to lose.

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Here's how I do it - there are more and probably better ways but this works for me:


Download a 98 startup boot disk from www.bootdisk.com
(yes 98, not xp) and save it to a floppy

Boot to the floppy (change your bios screen boot order to floppy first if necessary)

On the menu, enable cd support.
Once you get the a drive, type c:

Then type format c:
Dos will walk you through a clean reformat....

Once reformatted, insert your XP cd.
Change to your cd drive's directory
Type cd I386
Then type WNNT.exe

Your clean xp installation should begin. Ive tried to be as thourough as possible

peace

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I had this problem for a long time before I realized it was easy to solve from a command screen. Enter the DOS command format [drive letter]: /x The /x will cause the operating system to delete all "handles" to the disk, and you will be able to format it. (I have no idea what handles are, but this works.)


I have been trying to reformat my drive on my computer, not a "windows XP reinstallation" but just straight out format the disk. after it gives me the warning of erasing everything on the disk, a window pops up after I click format saying, "windows cannot format this drive. quit any disk utilities and make sure that no windows is displaying the contents of this drive. then try again." Please! help me! I cant find any way to stop running these programs. I have uninstalled everything that I can including disk utilities and what not. I tried doing the "reccomended reinstall of XP" but it deleted nothing. Please help!

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Hmmm... take this suggestion only as a suggestion. I'm sure that someone else will be able to respond in more detail.

I have no idea why you're running into this problem, but whenever I've needed to reformat (I used to do it quite a bit) I would use Linux.

Again, this is only a suggestion, and if you screw up your disks by doing this, I'm not responsible - just so you know.

The linux fdisk utility is great IMHO and gives you the ability to assign any partition ID to a disk partition. Use the linux instalation disk to use fdisk and create your partitions ("type m for help") I know for Win2000 the partition ID is "c" for Win95=>32bit formatting. You'll have to change this by "toggling the partition ID" (I think "t" from the help menu) because by default in linux fdisk the partition ID is set to 82 (linux native).

I hope this helps and that someone might further add to this or to the root of your current problems.


-gkd

82 is swap, 83 is native.

You can't format the boot drive in Windows, no matter how hard you try. So, the process is to boot from the cd. You may have to change your BIOS settings to allow this, but that's painless.

Otherwise, you follow the screens after it boots up.

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I am getting ready to reformat my hard drive, with windows XP. Can anyone let me know what to expect.....such as partioning, which I do not understand. Should I partition or not? And do I need to change something in the Bios? I really don't want to end up in worse shape than I am in now. Thank you sooo much. I am desperate, but nervous about this whole thing.

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No, you only need to partition if you plan on installing multiple operating systems on one computer. All you need to do is stick in your Windows XP cd, boot that baby up, then go to "Install Windows" then select the drive and press F to format. This will whipe out your entire hardrive and install windows in a few easy steps. Good luck man.

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actually you can partition it ,i do 75% for windows and programs i install and 25% for keeping backup of thing i don't want to loose if i have to reinstall windows. Also where i download image files to for burning

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I have been trying to reformat my drive on my computer, not a "windows XP reinstallation" but just straight out format the disk

Go to the website of the hard drive's manufacturer. They will provide a downloadable utilities disk image that will create a bootable floppy. One of the utilities provided on the floppy will do a full format and error check, sometimes called a "recertification." This is, by far, your best option for a fresh start. Of course you lose all data on the disk (including the partition table), but it's the closest thing to starting from scratch.

You should always have this type of brand-specific-utilities floppy for each brand of hard drive you own so as to get the most out of your HDs.

Partitioning is useful. The more partitions you have, the more efficient the use of drive space -- and by keeping the boot partition to about 10 GB, there's less to back up in case it's blown away.

I'm with gkdmaths on the use of Linux to partition your drive. Whenever I do a Windows XP install, I use the cd-bootable Knoppix ahead of time to prep and partition the disk -- I find it a lot more convenient than from within the XP Setup environment. Under Knoppix, the command is cfdisk.

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Hi,

I want to partition my hard drive too, but my problem is that I have neither the windows startup disk nor a floppy drive (new laptop).

I read all over the place about how to partition using boot disk, or fdisk, etc, but apparently, everything requires a floppy drive.

Could I possibly create some sort of disk that I could boot into in a cd, and boot from the cd as though it were a floppy, that is, can i cheat this way?

I tried downloading this program thing from microsoft, but it was too smart, realised i had no floppy and shut off in 5 secs?

I really do not wish to purchase partition magic just for a one time use, any help would be deeply appreciated. :>

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Boot from Windows XP CD. Delete partition before continuing with the install. Create new ones. Continue installing Windows. The XP installation routine contains the necessary utilities and capability.

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Just change your boot order in bios so it boots to cd. Make your boot disk on the cd first obviously. Also, if you're clever enough :twisted: you can find partion magic for free on the internet...

peace

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I have been trying to reformat my drive on my computer, not a "windows XP reinstallation" but just straight out format the disk. after it gives me the warning of erasing everything on the disk, a window pops up after I click format saying, "windows cannot format this drive. quit any disk utilities and make sure that no windows is displaying the contents of this drive. then try again." Please! help me! I cant find any way to stop running these programs. I have uninstalled everything that I can including disk utilities and what not. I tried doing the "reccomended reinstall of XP" but it deleted nothing. Please help!

The EXACT same thing happened to me. I fixed it by booting into the disc

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If you tried formatting from dos & it didn't work cause maybe you have an ntfs partition & you are trying to format with a FAT format disk. Do a web search on Ultimate boot disk or ultimate boot cd. it is free, do not pay for it. It has tons of tools

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Just boot from the CD, delete the existing partition, install on it.. it should re-format disk and install automatically. If you don't have the XP CD, then you have a problem... I suggest you get a copy since you'll be needing it.

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I would DEFINITELY not advise people to purchase such cheap copies of Windows XP from places found by online price locators like that one. They are OEM copies which are not being legitimately sold unless they are sold with a motherboard bundle or system, and cannot be re-used on a different system. In some cases they need to be fiddled about with to get them to work on ANY system!

The cheapest, full retail legitimate Windows XP available from there is over $160

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I have been trying to reformat my drive on my computer, not a "windows XP reinstallation" but just straight out format the disk. after it gives me the warning of erasing everything on the disk, a window pops up after I click format saying, "windows cannot format this drive. quit any disk utilities and make sure that no windows is displaying the contents of this drive. then try again." Please! help me! I cant find any way to stop running these programs. I have uninstalled everything that I can including disk utilities and what not. I tried doing the "reccomended reinstall of XP" but it deleted nothing. Please help quickly

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I have been trying to reformat my drive on my computer, not a "windows XP reinstallation" but just straight out format the disk. after it gives me the warning of erasing everything on the disk, a window pops up after I click format saying, "windows cannot format this drive. quit any disk utilities and make sure that no windows is displaying the contents of this drive. then try again." Please! help me! I cant find any way to stop running these programs. I have uninstalled everything that I can including disk utilities and what not. I tried doing the "reccomended reinstall of XP" but it deleted nothing. Please help!

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