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Windows 7: Full Format Hard Drive with Windows 7 Boot Disc

20 Oct 2009   #1
AngryJedi

Windows 7
 
 
Full Format Hard Drive with Windows 7 Boot Disc

Hi guys,
Is there a way I can remove all the partitions from my Hard drive and do a full format (not quick)? The windows 7 install disc does a quick format but I would like to clean it thoroughly. Is there a utility I can use at boot time to do this?

Thanks!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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20 Oct 2009   #2
logicearth

Windows 10 Pro (x64)
 
 

Why do you want to do a full format? What is wrong with quick? Anyways this question was answered before...
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20 Oct 2009   #3
Teerex

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate SP1
 
 

You can do all that right from the Windows 7 install disc, when you boot from it. A full format is not necessary - you can delete all partitions on a disc and it is a clean disc (although it still has stuff written on it - but it is not readable any more by anything except special data recovery software).

Again, there is no need to do a full format - it is wiser to use the time to check the disk for errors and bad blocks - nobody would like to install a new OS to a disk that has reached the beginning of its end.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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20 Oct 2009   #4
AngryJedi

Windows 7
 
 

I want to do a full format because I am troubleshooting my computer for another issue....there's a thread a bit below this called "Windows 7 Hang" and I'm having some freezing issues. I've already installed Windows 7 three times using the quick format on my C partition, but now I want to completely wipe every partition and thoroughly do a format to troubleshoot further.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Oct 2009   #5
Teerex

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate SP1
 
 

I've seen that topic, and I really think you don't need a full format at all. Run a checkdisk, make it look for a bad sector(s). But from the looks of it, it has nothing to do with what is (or isn't) on the disk - if it is not a controller failure, the only thing you can and should look into is the BIOS. Try first - resetting it to a default state, and if that doesn't help, finding a newer version if it exists and flashing it (be careful, use only the tool the producer provides).

there could also be a tool in BIOS that allows you to check the health of your disk.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2010   #6
VegasUSMC

Windows 7 Professional
 
 
Quick Format is NOT the same (doesn't actually work)

First, let me say that I'm disappointed at the arrogance of some of the posts regarding Full Formats and how NO ONE should ever have to do one. The point of the forum is to discuss ways of doing things, not criticize one for trying to figure out how.

In any event, I inadvertently installed Windows 7 Professional N (64-bit) on a clean hard drive. Later I determined that I actually wanted the "non-N" Version. However, no matter what I try (which I will outline below), when I get to the part where it tries to load up the first time, it is still Pro-N and my Pro Product key isn't valid. So, Quick Format DOES NOT do the same thing.

I have tried Format (which is a quick) and no joy.
I have removed all partitions, repartitioned and no joy.

One thing I did notice is that when I get to the screen that starts copying files after I have done disk selection, it IMMEDIATELY goes to unpacking files... wastes no time in loading the files from the CD. This tells me quite clearly that it is somehow still able to read the data that was previously written to a "Quick Format"ed hard drive and a "Delete Partition" hard drive.

Sorry if I came off strong at the beginning, but you act like this is bug free software and that there is no room for the possibility that something isn't working right. I agree, a Quick Format should work... sadly, it doesn't.

My solution is to pull the hard drive from Computer A, place it in Computer B, and wipe the hard drive with a true Format... not some FAKE QUICK Format that clearly doesn't work..

If you have any better ideas that don't involve flaming me, I would love to hear your perspective.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2010   #7
logicearth

Windows 10 Pro (x64)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by VegasUSMC View Post
So, Quick Format DOES NOT do the same thing.
No, Quick Format does not do the same thing as a full format. It just does the task faster. Removing the Master File Table and marking every bit and sector as free is more then enough to clear a HDD. The Windows Installer is not pulling any files from the HDD that you formatted, the file list is gone. Your problem has nothing to do with formatting the HDD.

The problem is you have the N version Windows 7 DVD. You need to either remaster the DVD by removing a single file...currently I don't remember which... As long as you use this DVD you are going to install the N version.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2010   #8
CommonTater

XP Pro SP3 X86 / Win7 Pro X86
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AngryJedi View Post
Hi guys,
Is there a way I can remove all the partitions from my Hard drive and do a full format (not quick)? The windows 7 install disc does a quick format but I would like to clean it thoroughly. Is there a utility I can use at boot time to do this?

Thanks!
Full format doesn't do what most people seem to think it does... It does not wipe the hard disk. Basically a full format is a quick format --write partition, MBR and MFT-- followed by a surface scan of the disk. It is verifying sector integrity, not formatting the hard disk.

If you want a clean wipe of the disk you will need the factory's "low level format" utility or, perhaps, one of the "zero fill" utilities.

If your computer is freezing up it's far more likely to be bad memory or a weak power supply than any problem with your hard disk.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2010   #9
MadMaxData

Windows 7 Enterprise x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AngryJedi View Post
Hi guys,
Is there a way I can remove all the partitions from my Hard drive and do a full format (not quick)? The windows 7 install disc does a quick format but I would like to clean it thoroughly. Is there a utility I can use at boot time to do this?

Thanks!
There sure is. I always use SeaGate's "Disc Wizard Starter Edition." It will write zero's to the entire drive, permanately deleting any previous data. You can download it here: CLICK ME

Also, if you need to check the disc for bad sectors, you can also download SeaTools at the same website.

I've used it literally hundreds of times, and it always works perfect. Hope that helps.

*EDIT*
Additionally, if you want a boot disc that has every DOS tool under the sun on it, I would recommend the Ultimate Boot CD. You can download it here: CLICK ME

It also has Disk Wizard on it as well.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2010   #10
MadMaxData

Windows 7 Enterprise x64
 
 

Hey CommonTater, we meet back up on "formatting" thread. Imagine that...LOL
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 Full Format Hard Drive with Windows 7 Boot Disc




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