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Windows 7: How to format PC without booting anything from CD or USB

01 Jan 2012   #11
mgp1964

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 

Low-Level Format, Zero-Fill and Diagnostic Utilities


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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02 Jan 2012   #12
wanchoo

Windows 7 Pro with SP1 32bit
 
 

If you have a floppy drive then you can also do it by using "fdisk".

I think that is how it all began although many may never of heard of "fdisk" like this 81 year old geezer..


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by problemo View Post
Hi, I know this is a Windows 7 forum but if anyone can help me out in this Windows XP dilemma, I would be very grateful.

I have a Windows XP PC which I want to completely delete everything and throw it in the garbage. Problem is the CD-rom drives do not work and I can't boot from USB (no option in BIOS).... I've already deleted personal files from the computer to the recycle bin and used Eraser to securely delete it. I want to completely delete everything (like a complete reformat) ---- within the OS or by other means.... how can I do this? I donít want any programs, registry, or anything else when I throw the computer away.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Jan 2012   #13
mgp1964

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by wanchoo View Post
If you have a floppy drive then you can also do it by using "fdisk".

I think that is how it all began although many may never of heard of "fdisk" like this 81 year old geezer..


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by problemo View Post
Hi, I know this is a Windows 7 forum but if anyone can help me out in this Windows XP dilemma, I would be very grateful.

I have a Windows XP PC which I want to completely delete everything and throw it in the garbage. Problem is the CD-rom drives do not work and I can't boot from USB (no option in BIOS).... I've already deleted personal files from the computer to the recycle bin and used Eraser to securely delete it. I want to completely delete everything (like a complete reformat) ---- within the OS or by other means.... how can I do this? I donít want any programs, registry, or anything else when I throw the computer away.
fdisk will delete the partitions but will not write 0 to destroy the info on the HD. A low level format will make the disk raw and also allows writting 0's to the disk to destroy any data.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

02 Jan 2012   #14
SIW2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

I don't know about XP, but with more recent o/s - you could boot winre.wim off a small separate partition and use that to wipe it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Jan 2012   #15
davehc
Microsoft MVP

Vista and now 7 in 32 and 64 bit.
 
 

You obviously have a new computer?
Why not plug in the HD as a second hard disk and do a full format from there?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Jan 2012   #16
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64
 
 

And did you know that hard drives already have a built in system for nuking data off of them? Besides use of a security tool like the open source program Eraser to zero out drives you may want to read this older article on how to go about seeing everything made unrecoverable. How to REALLY erase a hard drive | ZDNet

Another option doesn't require any effort on your part but will pain your wallet a little! That would be taking it to some place that degasses drives! Well what would you do if drive failed and you needed it wiped? Securely Wipe a Dead Hard Drive | PCWorld

The last option however besides physically destroying a drive is either opening up the casing itself which exposes the platter to literally everything making it useless from dust, dirt, and other debris as well as oxidation. Or you can run magnets over it!

Now if you decided to save the drive(s) you would simply nuke with a zero filler and call it a day when you saw new partitions created putting other data on.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 How to format PC without booting anything from CD or USB




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