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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger
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    To Format C: or Not to Format C:

    Good Morning,
    A user at work uses her home computer (using PC Anywhere) to connect to her office computer and does a lot of work from home. On the home computer she is having a pile of problems such as freezing up, not starting properly, running slow etc. (No Blue Screens O' Death though.)
    Someone advised her that the C: drive needs to be reformatted and she came to me for assistance. I'm the computer guy here at work but I kinda fell into this job and I don't know very much about hardware, but this seems extreme to me.
    Under what circumstances would someone have to reformat their hard drive?
    I appreciate any help you folks can provide.

    Stats

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: To Format C: or Not to Format C:

    >> Under what circumstances would someone have to reformat their hard drive?

    When the cost (in any terms) of replacing and/or repairing installed software, or debugging installation errors etc outweighs the cost (in any terms) of reinstalling the operating sytem and required software.

    What operating system?
    How old is the machine?
    How long have these freeze-ups been occurring?

    Prescribing a re-format for symptoms of freeze-ups and slow running seems a bit severe. It may be necessary, but I think there could be a lot of easiers things tried first.

  3. #3
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    Re: To Format C: or Not to Format C:

    The computer has Windows 95, it's a three years old and it's been acting up for about the last three months. She doesn't know the processor or speed.
    When she first asked about this I assumed (we all know where assuming gets us) that she would have Windows 98 at least, would you suggest going to Windows 2000 or XP first and see if that fixes things?

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: To Format C: or Not to Format C:

    OK - I'm going to move this to the General Windows forum where it will get a wider and more informed audience.

  5. #5
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    Re: To Format C: or Not to Format C:

    Win95 alwyas seemed to degrade over a period of time. I remember that some people would suggest a reformat and reload every six months. I always thought that to be extreme. If the machine is OK to run Win2k or XP she'd be much better off IMHO. Win2k would be more stringnet about the hardware it supports but less demanding on the hardware. A three year old machine is probably on the edge of XP usability. But it can't hure to check. I'm using a three year old Dell at home with XP Pro just fine. There's a lot of information on the XP web site about requirements and qualifications. If she can run XP go for it. I think it is a terrific OS.

    Joe
    Joe

  6. #6
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    Re: To Format C: or Not to Format C:

    Thank you very for your advise although it does raise the $64,000 question; which is better Windows 2000 Professional or XP?

    Stats

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    Re: To Format C: or Not to Format C:

    Stats,
    Both Win2k & XP are very stable. IMHO XP is better though. I'm sure you can get as many contrary opinions as your want. XP supports a broader range of hardware than 2K. XP also has better support for older applications if that is important.

    Joe
    Joe

  8. #8
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    Re: To Format C: or Not to Format C:

    Generally speaking, for home user XP is better: a lot of games is not working under NT/2k. WinXP has compatibility mode designed especially for running old programs (it emulates Win95 environment). On the other hand, it is more demanding on hardware and sometimes you can encounter lack of driver problem for an old pieces of hardware (so Win2k driver also). Some older programs will not run under WinXP (for example, PCAnywhere v.10.0 and below; you must purchase v.10.2 and above). WinXP Home Edition doesn't work in domain network, but for you this is not the case. Both 2k and XP are very stable OS, but XP has more eyecandies. Take a closer look to the computer: everything that was produced before 2000 (hardware and software) potentially can be a problem under WinXP.

  9. #9
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    Re: To Format C: or Not to Format C:

    Hi Stats
    When I was on W95 (up until the end of last year) I thought nothing of regular reformats. Apart from the time, it was never a problem and the system does improve for a time. It also depends on whether your friend has her installation cds for the various programs and also copies of any downloads she's added. Of course downloads can always be downloaded again I suppose.
    Peter

  10. #10
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    Re: To Format C: or Not to Format C:

    Windows 2000 also has compatibility mode. Try right-clicking on a shortcut and you'll find the same options that are present in XP.

    XP is built on its foundation, so many of the features in XP are extended from what was learned in the development and maturation process of 2000. XP, though, is geared towards a broader user base, where 2000 is primarily intended for business use.

    Where would one find a version of pcAnywhere 10.2? I've successfully run 10.0 under XP, although 10.5 works better, but Symantec in their infinite need for revenue demands a fee for the upgrade (if you own v10).

    For what it's worth, I wouldn't use XP pro in a business environment - not yet - because it doesn't offer anything compelling other than ease of wireless networking that 2000 doesn't already have.
    -Mark

  11. #11
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: To Format C: or Not to Format C:

    <hr>Where would one find a version of pcAnywhere 10.2? I've successfully run 10.0 under XP, although 10.5 works better, but Symantec in their infinite need for revenue demands a fee for the upgrade (if you own v10). <hr>
    I don't know about 10,2 but I also own version 10.0 and tried their beta of 10.5 until I found out how badly they were gonna rip me off to "upgrade!" That's when I found RADMIN, which turns out to be much faster and (IMHO) more reliable than pcAnywhere. You owe it to yourself, Mark, to go take a look.

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