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694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a hard drive that multiple viruses shut it down. Is it possible to erase this HD and reformat it to be usable again. I don't need it, yet I can do this and not harm this new HP a6500f. My wife would kill me for that<=. I have a laptop and a minor understanding of computer construction, just not programing. I really would like to get it going then use it for my exclusive survival, genealogy and personal writtings. Any Help would be tried and appreciated.

16,867 Posts
Some CD burning software has the option to create a boot cd. Check your CD burning software to see if it does. If so, create a boot cd.

The start the computer you want to format, insert cd, resart computer so it boots off the CD.

At the prompt type in fdisk and hit enter on your keyboard

Hit Y for yes to enable large disk support

Option 4 to delete drive partition, delete non-fat partition, Y for yes again

restart computer

fdisk again

Y again to enable large disk support

Option 1 to create partition, yes use the entire drive

restart when prompted

At the prompt type format c: and hit enter

Y for yes or hit enter that you will delete all the data

Hit enter when the format is complete

==================== or =====================

Slave the old drive into a working computer. But to do this you will have to check the jumpers. The last plug on the ribbon is for master, the plug in the middle is for slave.

You can not have 2 masters on a single ribbon, nor can you have 2 slaves on a single ribbon.

Oh yea, is the drive SATA or IDE?? If its SATA, then dont worry about the jumper settings.

Once the drive is slaved in, Right click my computer and go to manage, then go to disk management. From there you can format the drive.

Or just scan it with your current virus scanner.

Are we lost yet??


======================= or ================================

Boot off your windows CD and do a side by side install.

When your warned that a c:\windows folder already exist, hit the key to select a different folder. I usually use something like c:\winxp and install windows to that folder.

This will disable your first install of windows. Even if you do have a virus on the first install, it will not be active.

Side by side installs are easier then reformating and installing everything again. It also allows for a dual boot computer with 2 separate operating systems.

Then install a virus scanner and do a full system scan.

19 Posts
you could also use a windows xp install disc
(your computer may need to be set-up to run off the disc, you should be able to find some pretty good instructions on the internet on how to change it in your bios settings)

tell it you want to install windows xp
and it will show you the harddrives in your computer
just pick the one you want to delete and push "d" for delete partition(or what ever the button is)
then quit before going to the next step(installing windows)

then you can start windows normally and go to
control panel > Administrative Tools > Computer Management
then click on disk management and you should see all your hard drives listed and one should be unallocated (i think they colour them black or green)

this way let's you format it without risking another computer, though it's a little more complicated

another option is to use a linux live CD instead, one that's meant just for this sort of thing is:
though you need a CD burner to do this

wow that was a longer reply than i had planned

I also wanted to mention that for Edward4576's way to work you may need to change the jumper on the drive to slave, here's a picture that should make it clear what i mean:
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