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Windows 7: Reverting back to a Clean HD


07 Mar 2010   #1

Genuine windows 7X64
 
 
Reverting back to a Clean HD

Hello everyone i just installed win 7 on a new 500GB hard drive, on my OLD upgraded machine,(not my main machine) i would like to wipe that HD clean and try installing a Diffrent, older, OS. or use it for a secondary HD on my MAIN machine. I dont belive i can format the Active partition with in windows 7 ?, how do i remove window 7 and the system restore partition from the HD?.

Thanks in advance


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07 Mar 2010   #2

Win 8 Release candidate 8400
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Pantz View Post
Hello everyone i just installed win 7 on a new 500GB hard drive, on my OLD upgraded machine,(not my main machine) i would like to wipe that HD clean and try installing a Diffrent, older, OS. or use it for a secondary HD on my MAIN machine. I dont belive i can format the Active partition with in windows 7 ?, how do i remove window 7 and the system restore partition from the HD?.

Thanks in advance
A thrid party app, a dos disk, any other OS boot disk will do it.


Ken
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07 Mar 2010   #3

Genuine windows 7X64
 
 

thank for the quick reply there ZZ. so DBAN will do the job just fine then ?
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07 Mar 2010   #4
Microsoft MVP

 

You can also use Diskpart from elevated Command Prompt in other HD OS, or from booted Windows 7 DVD Repair console or Repair CD:

DISKPART
LIST DISK
SELECT DISK # (for old Windows 7 HD you want deleted)
CLEAN ALL (zeroes the disk; takes awhile; drop "all" if you dont' want full clean, just deletion)
create partition logical
select partition 1
assign letter=d (replace d with desired available letter)
format
exit
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07 Mar 2010   #5

Genuine windows 7X64
 
 

so what would be the Elevated command to use DISKPART to wipe the only drive (500GB) on my system?
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07 Mar 2010   #6

Genuine windows 7X64
 
 

ok i think i have figured it out, once i make the disk active, just type "clean" or "clean all" and it should wipe my disk so that i will be able to install another OS or make it a clean secondary drive to my main machine?.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Mar 2010   #7
Microsoft MVP

 

If you want to use the old HD for a secondary data drive, then run the commands as given from the OS on that machine or from booted Windows 7 DVD Repair console or Repair CD.

If you want to prepare the old HD to install an OS, then change "logical" to "primary" in the commands, and add "Active" just before format.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Pantz View Post
ok i think i have figured it out, once i make the disk active, just type "clean" or "clean all" and it should wipe my disk so that i will be able to install another OS or make it a clean secondary drive to my main machine?.
Actually you are using "Clean all" (to zero) or "Clean" (quicker) to wipe off the Active flag which is blocking deletion of the HD. You could do the same with "inactive" but since you want it cleaned then "clean all" is cleanest of all.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Mar 2010   #8

Genuine windows 7X64
 
 

ok i got an error when i typed in "clean all" from the elevated command prompt ( as the admin ), Virtual disk service error clean is not allowed on the disk containing the current boot, system, pagefile, i guess i am going to have to use a 3rd party software to get this HD cleaned ?.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Mar 2010   #9
Microsoft MVP

 

Normally "clean all" will ignore active flag.

Try:

DISKPART
LIST DISK
SELECT DISK # (for target HD)
LIST PARTITION
SELECT PARTITION (for old OS partition)
INACTIVE
SELECT DISK # (same HD)
CLEAN ALL
then whatever formatting you want to do, or use installer

The best partition manager for Windows 7 is free Partition Wizard bootable CD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Mar 2010   #10

MS Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-bit
 
 

Pantz,
Boot your system up from a Recovery CD or UFD.
When you get that Recovery Menu, choose Command Prompt.
You will now be able to use DiskPart without any complications.

You can do the same thing if you have a Windows 7 DVD. Just boot from the DVD and when you get to the first screen wanting a response from you, use Shift + F10 to get to a command prompt.
At this point in time, you are actually running a WinPE (Pre-execution Environment) from ram. If you would like, you can remove the DVD since you've got what you need running in ram from a ram drive with the letter X:
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 Reverting back to a Clean HD




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