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  1. #1
    Lounger
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    starting from scratch (WIN XP PRO SP2)

    This is a repeat of my situation from several months back. At this point, I want to start fresh. I have an XP CD and I just want to wipe out everything and do a clean install of Win XP PRO. I want to wipe everything from my HD and eliminate the partitioning. I will just install a 2nd physical HD after I get the computer working like it is supposed to. I don't need to save anything.

    1) How can I format HD?

    2) How can I undo my partitioning so I just have 1 partition?

    Thanks!!


    I have a system where I have partitioned the 160 GB HD into 2 partitions C and E.
    I boot onto E:
    I have done START>CONTROL PANEL>ADMINISTRATIVE TOOLS>COMPUTER MANAGEMENT (shortcut)>DISK MANAGEMENT
    Graphs next to DISK 0 show C:78GB NTFS HEALTHY (SYSTEM) and E:75GB NTFS HEALTHY (BOOT)
    I loaded WIN XP PRO first on E2 months ago) and then C: last week.
    I want to eliminate the XP and frankly everything else from C:. When I right click on the graph, the ability to delete the partition or format it are grey.
    I could not remove XP by selecting ADD/REMOVE programs from CONTROL PANEL when booting to C:, (but everything else is gone)
    I did delete a bunch of files and folders indiscriminately from C: so I see nothing on the drive unless I viewed Hidden files/folders.
    Of course booting on C: is now impossible as far as XP goes. I killed it, but I can't get rid of anything else. I couldn't format C: from COMMAND PROMPT although it went
    through the motions and only informed I couldn't when the format should have finished. I tried the format again and it said I could not format because the volume was in
    use by another process and it would only work if I dismounted the volume. it gave me the option of dismounting the volume and I did. unfortunately, at the end of my wait, it
    was still unable to format the drive. I'd like to get rid of it, especially as the machine still gives me the option of booting from either "installation' of WIN XP Pro, but the first version
    (which is the default after 30 seconds if I don't select the second )is the one which I massacred.

    I

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: starting from scratch (WIN XP PRO SP2)

    I've gotta admit that MY days are gone forever it seems: I have always "started fresh" by booting the machine with a Win98SE boot disk and then using FDISK to completely zap and re-prepare a drive. That's been five years ago (in my current retired state of being). My current machine didn't even come with a floppy drive!

    I don't remember what the initial screens look like, but I should think if you boot the machine with the WinXP Pro CD, you should be able to do the same things I described above, i.e. zap the whole drive and re-prepare it in ONE partition for a brand new installation of XP Pro. My nervousness about this, remembering some of your earlier posts, is that I hope you do have a good CD license key to get a new installation up and running.

  3. #3
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: starting from scratch (WIN XP PRO SP2)

    Answer to both questions:

    I would recommend to install second hard drive before clean installation of Windows XP, but it is your choice.

    1. Insert your Windows XP Installation CD and reboot your computer.
    2. When you see BIOS splash screen, press the required key to go to BIOS and check boot sequence. In boot sequence CD-ROM must be before the hard drive.
    3. Reboot your computer. When you see "Press any key to boot from CD" message, do so quickly (you have only 5 seconds for it).
    4. If you will prompt to choose Repair or Setup, choose Setup (press Enter).
    5. If you will prompt to accept EULA, press F8 to agree.
    6. You will see "Windows XP Setup" screen with a list of all your hard drives and partitions. Make sure you see all your installed hard drives.
    7. Select the last partition on the first hard drive (it is possible you will see 7 or 8 MB of "unpartitioned space" at the end of the drive; just ignore it) and press D. On the next screen, press L.
    8. Select the first partition on the first hard drive and press D. On the next screen, press Enter, and on the next screen press L.
    9. Very important. Now you will see only "unpartitoned space" on your first hard drive. Select it and press C. On the next screen, choose a file system (I would strongly recommend NTFC) and select full (not quick) formatting. If you skip this step, your boot partition (where Windows is) will be F: !
    10. If there are no partitions on your second hard drive, create one (select it and press C ). The first partition on your second hard drive will be D: (the second E: etc). Your CD-ROM drive will get the next available letter. If you will left your second hard drive unpartitioned, your CD-ROM drive will be D: . You can change any partition letter from inside Windows, BUT boot partition (when Windows is). You couldn't change drive letter for boot partition under any circumstances!
    11. Select the first partition on the first hard drive, press Enter (set up Windows XP) and follow Setup routine.

    Good luck!

  4. #4
    3 Star Lounger
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    Re: starting from scratch (WIN XP PRO SP2)

    I'd strongly recommend getting the new HDD now and re-installing the OS straight onto it. Mount the old HDD as a secondary and you can then copy anything you really would rather not lose (mail folders / address book / favourites ) onto the new HDD before you reformat the old one.

  5. #5
    Lounger
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    Re: starting from scratch (WIN XP PRO SP2)

    I thank you very much. Followed your instructions and got the beast to only have one partition and reinstalled operating system without a hitch.
    I've more than made back my money from buying Woody's book just by having access to the knowledge, hints and recommendations of people in the lounge!

  6. #6
    Lounger
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    Re: starting from scratch (WIN XP PRO SP2)

    New installation went without a hitch. Didn't even have trouble with the CD license. I called Microsoft's number for the activation and the robot voice brought me through with no questions regarding the reactivation. Almost makes me like 'em!

  7. #7
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: starting from scratch (WIN XP PRO SP2)

    Whooee, always like to hear a success story. Good job, sir!

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