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> HDD formatting question
Dylan
post Mar 19 2005, 10:49 AM
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Alright, I want a fresh start...actually, I'm just too stupid to run linux. biggrin.gif So my problem is that I want to format both of my HDDs. The problem is that I don't have windows. Is it possible that I can boot from a DOS floppy, and format both the HDDs from that? The only problem is that I don't know the letter that my second drive goes by. I didn't install it from windows. Soo...yeah. I need help. biggrin.gif
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clarkma5
post Mar 19 2005, 12:08 PM
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Whatever your second drive is, as long as it doesn't have windows on it, you can assign it whatever letter you want after the fact. And you should be able to use a DOS floppy to start a format; personally, I just stick in a windows CD and format with that.
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Dylan
post Mar 19 2005, 12:46 PM
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But that second drive was never even used in windows, and I can't even access windows. I have no idea what letter it might be. But if I do stick in the DS_xP.gif install disc, will it let me format BOTH drives in there?
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clarkma5
post Mar 19 2005, 12:49 PM
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No, it'll format one, but then once you install windows, you can format the other drive through windows and assign it a letter.
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Dylan
post Mar 19 2005, 12:51 PM
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But the second drive has the linux on it that won't let me boot from windows!
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clarkma5
post Mar 19 2005, 01:14 PM
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change the boot order in the BIOS so that it boots CD-ROM first, windows HDD second, linux HDD third. Or, failing that, disconnect the linux HDD and format the windows drive.
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Cyclone
post Mar 19 2005, 01:16 PM
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QUOTE(Dylan @ Mar 19 2005, 03:51 PM)
But the second drive has the linux on it that won't let me boot from windows!

Do what clarkma says, get windows installed and then plug the hd back in
Assuming you're running DS_xP.gif (2000 is almost the same), open control panel, administrative tools, computer management. From there click on Disk Management and the bottom part of the screen you will see all your drives. The drive with Linux will be on that list. Right Click it and click on Format. Boom! there
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Dylan
post Mar 19 2005, 01:22 PM
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Even if I do reinstall windows, it won't let me boot from it since I have linux installed!
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Autovisie
post Mar 19 2005, 01:24 PM
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QUOTE(Dylan @ Mar 19 2005, 10:22 PM)
Even if I do reinstall windows, it won't let me boot from it since I have linux installed!

Unplug the HD with Linux on it.. It has been said a couple of times wink.gif
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Dylan
post Mar 19 2005, 01:24 PM
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But then what do I do with that linux drive?
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Autovisie
post Mar 19 2005, 01:28 PM
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You don't do anything with it untill you (re)installed Windows on the other drive. Start you computer and start setup. Make sure the drive with Windows on it is the first drive to boot (after the Cd-rom i think). Shut down the computer and plug the Linux Hd in again. If it's allright Windows should startup like normal.
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Dylan
post Mar 19 2005, 01:31 PM
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I think I see...
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Autovisie
post Mar 19 2005, 01:33 PM
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QUOTE(Dylan @ Mar 19 2005, 10:31 PM)
I think I see...

thumbs_up.gif Always happy to help.. Actually i'm just the mediator between you and Cyclone and Clark
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Cyclone
post Mar 19 2005, 01:34 PM
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Dylan sounds like your problem is it modifyed your MBR (master boot record) on your primary hard drive to always boot Linux. Low level format may be in order if you have your primary drive in, the Linux drive unplugged and it still tries to boot linux.
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Dylan
post Mar 19 2005, 01:48 PM
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What's low level format, and how can I change my MBR?
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Viper007Bond
post Mar 19 2005, 02:42 PM
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QUOTE(clarkma5 @ Mar 19 2005, 01:08 PM)
Whatever your second drive is, as long as it doesn't have windows on it, you can assign it whatever letter you want after the fact. And you should be able to use a DOS floppy to start a format; personally, I just stick in a windows CD and format with that.

Same here. When you're installing Windows, it allows you to delete partions, format, etc.
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Cyclone
post Mar 19 2005, 03:31 PM
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QUOTE(Dylan @ Mar 19 2005, 04:48 PM)
What's low level format, and how can I change my MBR?

Low level formating restores your disk to the state that it was when you originally bought it. Takes a little while to do though.

as far as resetting the mbr, you need to get into dos some how. A Win98 boot disk works great for that. Then type /fdisk mbr -r
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KarmaWeasel
post Mar 19 2005, 05:05 PM
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NTLDR should overwrite anything LILO/GRUB has done to your MBR since it uses the same blocks. Or, you could do what Cyclone suggested, fdisk /mbr I think is the command on a win98 bootdisk... it's been a long time since I've dicked with fdisk though.

As for formatting the other drive, install windows on the main one, then right click on My Computer, select Manage, then go to the Logical Disk Manager. You can format the other drive and assign a drive label/letter in there.

As for a low-level format, you'd need something like NetBSD or some sort of unix varient to boot off of, no Windows programs can do it. It's basically re-zeroing your hard drive so it's like you just bought it and took it out of the anti-static bag and will take a very long time. Consider it a last resort.
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Viper007Bond
post Mar 19 2005, 05:26 PM
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QUOTE(Cyclone @ Mar 19 2005, 04:31 PM)
Low level formating restores your disk to the state that it was when you originally bought it. Takes a little while to do though.

as far as resetting the mbr, you need to get into dos some how. A Win98 boot disk works great for that. Then type /fdisk mbr -r

Doesn't it just write 0's?
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moe89
post Mar 19 2005, 05:28 PM
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What is the largest combined HD size that won't need a nother power source

I heard that you could have up to one terabyte on a single power source
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