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View Full Version : [other] Formatting and blanking a hard drive



Sebastian12
November 16th, 2008, 08:48 PM
I'm doing a massive reorganization of my OS's and hard drives. I have an older computer that I need to format a hard disk with Windows XP so it's blank. How should I go about this?

Oh, and this is assuming I can still boot up a new OS (most likely Linux, still haven't decided which though) from a CD while the HD is formatted. But I just wanted to make sure of this.

Thanks much!

jnorthr
November 16th, 2008, 08:55 PM
Before you go to all the bother to blitz your hardware, take backups of EVERYTHING that's important to you as you will loose it - count on it.

Then go out and buy a linux magazine with a CD trial linux version you can test. We all use what's called a 'live-cd' when we first learn ubuntu cos you can just put it your Cd reader and reboot your machine, then test to your heart's content BEFORE you install it. It does not touch your harddrive but runs from the CD (very slowly). If you don't like it you just take out the live-cd and throw it away and reboot into your existing windows system.

malfist
November 16th, 2008, 09:39 PM
Then go out and buy a linux magazine with a CD trial linux version you can test. We all use what's called a 'live-cd' when we first learn ubuntu cos you can just put it your Cd reader and reboot your machine, then test to your heart's content BEFORE you install it. It does not touch your harddrive but runs from the CD (very slowly). If you don't like it you just take out the live-cd and throw it away and reboot into your existing windows system.

Or you can download one for free. Check www.distrowatch.com for downloads and different distros. Just remember, live-cd's are a lot slower than when you are running it from the harddisk.

Experiment with the different distros and see which one you like best. Enjoy linux!

Sebastian12
November 19th, 2008, 12:04 AM
OK. Correction: I just want to format the hard drive to make it blank right now. I'm assuming that I can't do this from Windows because it'd delete the program that's formatting, right? Or is there some way else I'm unaware of?

And I mentioned installing an OS from a CD just to make sure it was possible. I was pretty sure but I'd be kinda screwed if I couldn't.

Thanks.

Therion
November 19th, 2008, 12:12 AM
Run the fdisk command from a DOS prompt if you want to format the drive.

Yezinki
November 20th, 2008, 09:17 PM
Use Duke Nuban.