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Windows 7: The value of true "Low-Level" formatting of HDD?


14 Oct 2011   #1

Windows XP Pro SP3, Windows 7 Pro 32-bit, Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit, Windows XP Home SP3
 
 
The value of true "Low-Level" formatting of HDD?

I'm about to rebuild a drive and the nature of its downfall is really disconcerting, and I have questions about wiping & reformatting.
The drive is a highly rated [by real people] Hitachi 100GB 7200rpm notebook drive.
I formatted it previously just letting windows do its thing [not quick format, just regular]. It ran fine for the user for about 3 months, then I get a call that it won't boot. Sure enough, windows was damaged to the point it wouldn't boot. I tried to reconstruct the clumsy way so as not to lose any important files but I don't like the result so I am about to totally nuke it and start from scratch.

Good smart people seem to disagree over formatting options:
1. "Low Level" formatting seems like a good idea, except that all drives are not the same so nobody seems happy with "one utility for all drives". But not all makers have, clearly, a "low level format" utility for each discrete class/type drive they ship.
So ???
2. If not low-level, is it wise to just let Windows 7 installer format the drive? Is there a better way to do it? Is the format utility housed under "Disk Management" identical to the one on the Windows 7 install DVD? If not, why not?
3. Is there, actually, some far/clearly superior 3rd party utility that is shown to render a superior drive format for installing the OS?
4. On a conventional SATA drive like this, is alignment necessary, and if so, done after the OS is config'd? or prior to?

ok... somebody educate me.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 Oct 2011   #2
Microsoft MVP

 

We have had this debate here: Diskpart Clean All debate thread
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14 Oct 2011   #3

Windows XP Pro SP3, Windows 7 Pro 32-bit, Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit, Windows XP Home SP3
 
 

ok, looking further I found this hearty discussion: Full Format Hard Drive with Windows 7 Boot Disc

if I don't hear otherwise, I'll follow what seems to be the gist of opines in that one.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 Oct 2011   #4

Windows XP Pro SP3, Windows 7 Pro 32-bit, Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit, Windows XP Home SP3
 
 

thanks for this: I didn't think of all/every term to search for

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
We have had this debate here: Diskpart Clean All debate thread
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Oct 2011   #5
Microsoft MVP

 

As you can tell by reading my link it was a sobering lesson by our teacher SIW2 who developed many of the methods used here in Install forum which have helped thousands.

Then the Admin's comment sealed the deal for me, although others still diverge.
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 The value of true "Low-Level" formatting of HDD?




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