A few words of thanks would be greatly appreciated.

Formatting Your Hard Drive

Formatting your hard drive may be required to resolve hardware conflicts and can be done through a Windows installation CD. If a secondary hard disc has to be formatted, it can be done through the administrative tools of the operating system running on the computer.

Format an External Hard Drive

The fact that the internal or external hard disk does not change the approach. The steps described below apply equally to an Internet hard drive to an external hard drive.
Fast or normal format?
For all these formatting operations, you can choose every time "quick format" and "normal format".
The "quick format" just writing to disk the "table of contents" of the score, while the "normal format" will replace all data with empty data to prevent any subsequent recovery of initial data.

If your drive is new, or that you do not want the above information present on the partition to format be recoverable by specialized software, select "Normal Format".

Before you start

Now here's the method to format your hard drive by taking maximum precautions so that no problem occurs:

You have to think up all data which must beings saved: texts, images, photos .It can also be useful to save the Outlook address book with all the details of his correspondents: Save the Address Book (wab files)
Prepare to external media what reinstall our software and drivers, especially the firewall and the antivirus installed BEFORE plugging the internet when you first start with freshly reinstalled OS.

What has not been saved before formatting, will be lost forever.

It is also advisable to prepare in advance all CDs for reinstallation to avoid unpleasant surprises.


Formatting a non-system partition

To format a partition that does not contain Windows and will contain any Windows OS.

From the desktop (under a computer administrator account if you are using Windows XP Pro) to Start> Programs, select Administrative Tools, and specifically Computer Management.

In the left part of the window that is open, select Storage> Disk Management. Down or up, select the partition to format, and right-click it, then Format.

Choose a volume name, a partition type.
If you do not have sensitive data on the disk, prefer the Quick Format option.

Reinstall Formatting

To reinstall Windows XP (or Windows 2000) only

Handling proposed here allows you to format your hard drive directly by reinstalling Windows XP. This saves time and format knowing that Windows XP installation possible.

Make sure you have a bootable Windows XP CD, or a set of installation disks.
You can now reboot your computer from the Windows XP CD or set of installation floppies (three in numbeStart the installation itself: first choose the installation by typing the enter key.

Accept (if you wish) the license with the F8 key. Finally, select the drive to be formatted. The program will tell you (if any) that Windows has already been installed in the disk in question. Then choose to install over with the C key
Then choose one of the options Format the partition. Windows NT4 / 2000 / XP: NTFS, Windows 98: FAT32
Formatting will start after confirmation and installation of Win XP follow.

Formatting Hard Drive (XP or otherwise) under DOS

It is possible to format the hard drive partition that contains an operating system or not using a boot disk.

To do this, insert the boot disk in the floppy drive and restart the computer.
At that time, it will load the Dos tools contained on the boot disk and give the hand you simply type the following command: Format C: (or D, or E depending on the partition to be formatted).


A few words of thanks would be greatly appreciated.

Ask a question
CCM is a leading international tech website. Our content is written in collaboration with IT experts, under the direction of Jean-François Pillou, founder of CCM.net. CCM reaches more than 50 million unique visitors per month and is available in 11 languages.
This document, titled « Formatting Your Hard Drive », is available under the Creative Commons license. Any copy, reuse, or modification of the content should be sufficiently credited to CCM (ccm.net).

Subscribe To Our Newsletter!

The Best of CCM in Your Inbox

Subscribe To Our Newsletter!