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Windows 7: Partition without Formatting

30 Jan 2011   #1

Windows 7 Professional x64
Partition without Formatting

Greetings all.

Is it necessary to format a disk before creating a partition on it? I just reorganized my storage and backup scheme which involved wiping (secure erase) three hard drives then creating partitions on them. All three were formatted as NTFS before the wiping but I did not actually format two of them again before re-creating the partitions.

Is this a problem? They are working fine but want to know if there are any potential problems or performance issues from doing this. I used either Easus Partition Master or Mini Partition Wizard on the two that I didn't format and Windows Disk Management on the third which is where I saw the "Quick Format" option as part of the partition creation process, hence the concern.

Thanks in advance!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Jan 2011   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Jan 2011   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x86

Hello caseblue and welcome to SF!
Short answer : No it is not
Long answer: you have it backwards...First you create the partitions and then they need to be formated
(Even tho, modern partition software usually formats partitions automatically during'll notice that you'll be asked about the format you desire)
If they weren't formatted those partitions wouldn't have a drive letter and thus wouldn't be accessible for regular operations at all

My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Jan 2011   #4

Windows 7 Professional x64

Hello and thanks for the reply.

Here is a screen capture with some notes in red text. What is difference between "Logical" and "Primary" and what are all the hash lines on H? I would expect F, G, and H to all be the same as they are hard disk drives used in the same way. I have no problem going back and starting from scratch on all of them if necessary (move data temporarily, wipe, format, partition, etc.) so let me know whatever is the best course of action.


Attached Files
File Type: pdf DiskMgr with notes.pdf (380.8 KB, 257 views)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Jan 2011   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x86

The main difference between logical and primary: You can have up to 4 primary partitions per hard drive (of which only one can be active at a time), but as many logical partitions as you have drive letters available.
Which essentially means that you can't boot from a logical partition.

When they're both on the same drive (under FAT32) , you had to create an extended partition first and then the logical drives in side of it.
But it doesn't matter for you in the way you drives are set up now. I haven't created any logicals in decades since they are "leftovers" from FAT32 times...NTFS doesn't need them anymore). I don't think Disk manager actually can create extended partitions anymore. All my hard drives hold 1 Primary partition with all available space. (like your G: drive)
What's the deal with those slanted lines, I can't say...I have them on C:\ so I always thought that it marks the active partition.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Jan 2011   #6

Windows 7 Professional x64

Thank you Sledge, looks like I'm good to go as is.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Partition without Formatting

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