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Reformatting computer

  1. Mar 21, 2005 #1
    is there a way to reformat your computer hard drive without using restore disks and if so how?
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 21, 2005 #2
    Donno what is a restore disk, but I have reformatted the C drive disks on several computers without any problem. Be advised that you will lose everything on the drive when you format.

    If you do not have a "back up" copy you can still get away with it. I restart the computer, START, DELETE, ESCAPE, CONTROL gives me seven choices. I go to the DOS option. Format C. Put the Windows disk in the cd drive. Try to get onto the disk in DOS. Much depends upon your computer layout, but on a computer with only the C: hard drive, the CD ROM should show up on D: or E:. From there just locate the setup.exe or autoexe.bat file and dive it a go.

    Incidentally, one of my computers has the hard drive divided into a C: drive and a D: drive. I can move all of my files over to the D: drive, then just formate the C: drive. In this case, the Windows disk shows up as the E: or the F: drive.

    On last caveat. As an example, my computer was originally programmed for WIN95 and later updated to WIN98. You must have both disks and first program for the WIN95, then update to the WIN98, and you must have the serial numbers for both systems.

    Good luck!
  4. Mar 21, 2005 #3
    At least on my beast when I format my hard drive I go into the CMOS and tell the beast to look for the boot drivers in the cd drive. That way I dont even need to mess around with DOS to get Windows going, it just automatically jumps into the installation. Of course once that is done I go back and reset it to look for it on the hard drive!
  5. Mar 26, 2005 #4
    I have an e machine with windows ME. it came with 2 disks: restore cd; (bootable cd). I put cd 1 in the drive and followed the prompts which reformatted and reinstalled everything, but it didn't restore it the way it was before. it came up with very low resolution... looked exactly like safe mode only it wasn't safe mode. not only that, but most of my regular programs including my printer wouldn't work. it would go online like that, however. I reformatted again and installed a windows ME disk over it. I got the resolution back, but had some other problems that took work to iron out such as getting the modem to intall properly. deleting and recreating a new dialer got that going. it seems to be working ok now but using the restore disks put a lot of junk back that I don't use or want so I had a lot of deleting and cleaning up to do. I had to reinstall everything I did want of course such as my printer which works fine now and norton antivirus, spybot, adaware, spyblaster, sygate firewall, etc. I also downloaded firefox browser which works well also, but internet explorer is still faster with the propel excellerator. the exellerator doesn't work with firefox for some reason. I still have 14.8 GB free on my hard drive, but now when I try to install my cd burner, I get an error message saying "access denied" "load language failed" and not enough disk space on drive D to extract this package and to free up 16.43 MB. I tried to check the available disk space in tools and it comes up with drive A which is the floppy disk drive instead of C. why would it be looking for space on drive D where the installation disk is, and why would it give me drive A when I'm looking for C in tools?
  6. Mar 26, 2005 #5
    hate to sound dense, but when I click on START, there is no DELETE, ESCAPE, CONTROL... or do you hit all 3 of those keys at once after starting or what... can you be more explicit for this newbie please?
  7. Mar 26, 2005 #6
    and what is CMOS?
  8. Mar 29, 2005 #7
    I think the START, DELETE, etc., comment was regarding my comment. START refers to starting the computer from an off condition. As it commences to load you hit the Delete key (at least on my computer). That will put you in the SETUP mode. next hit the ESCAPE key and immediately press and hold the CTL key. That should (at least on my computer) give you seven choices of starting procedures.

    Once you get into the DOS mode, you can put your setup disk (if you have one) in the A: drive and type AUTOEXEC.BAT, that should get you going.

    By the way, if it asks you whether you want to back up all of your files, I would say "no" because that eats up a whole lot of disk space.

    I find it useful to log all of key strokes and computer responses on a note pad in case I don't get it right the first time I can see where I went wrong.
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