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Windows 7: Format C: drive partition

07 Apr 2013   #1
PC Pinky

Windows 7 Professional 32bit
Format C: drive partition

Due too several problems on O/S which I cannot repair. I have decided to format my C: drive and start afresh.
I have two partitioned HDs with three partitions on each disk.
Is it possible to format the C: drive without touching the other two partitions on the same drive. If so, how?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Apr 2013   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1

You will have the options to select only the partition you want to install Windows to (C: ) and to format that drive during the Windows installation from DVD/USB.

Review and use this tutorial here:
Clean Install Windows 7

Notice at Step #7 that you have the option to use "Drive Options (Advanced)". That is where you will find the option to format C:.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Apr 2013   #3
PC Pinky

Windows 7 Professional 32bit

Thanks for your prompt reply.
Although the Boot menu is set to boot from the CD/DVD drive, it refuses to give me the option to boot from the CD/DVD when I boot-up. Is there an option to Format the whole of the HD, which includes all three partitions and start again from scratch. I so, How?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

07 Apr 2013   #4

Win7 Enterprise, Win7 x86 (Ult 7600), Win7 x64 Ult 7600, TechNet RTM on AMD x64 (2.8Ghz)

First try tapping the F11 key during boot up to see if you get a boot menu that you can choose DVD/CD drive for boot up. Are you sure your DVD is bootable & not defective ?

You could format the complete HD if you make a bottable Partition Wizard CD.

See the Tutorial Partition Wizard : Use the Bootable CD
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Apr 2013   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1

I don't see how formatting all the partitions will do anything to help if the problem is that the installation DVD will not boot. And I don't see how it would help solve any other Windows problem either (unless you are dual booting and there are other operating systems installed on those partitions).

In general it is better to just state what the problem you are trying to solve is. Then folks like us can suggest the best ways to solve the problem based upon our experience.

As for the DVD not booting I suggest a few things:
  • First, test the drive to be sure it is working and can read the disk. Try starting the disk from within Windows, but don't do anything more than that.
  • Change the Boot order in the BIOS settings (change it to anything different that what it is), reboot, go back in, and change it again to boot from CD/DVD first. Reboot, go back in, make sure setting stuck, put the DVD in the drive, then reboot again.
  • Second, I have witnessed a phenomenon where the system just blows past the DVD drive/installation disk before the boot can start. This has been on SATA optical drives that are too slow to initiate. On these machines I found that restarting the system, using the case restart button, right after the point where the BIOS screens says it is checking the CD/DVD drive, solves this the second time around.
  • You can also disconnect your HDD and then try to boot from the optical drive. This is just to see if the system will boot from the optical. Obviously you can't proceed with an installation from there.
EDIT: one other important tip: disconnect the 2nd hard drive (the one you are NOT installing W7 on) before you start any install.
There have been lots of posts with all kinds of problems that can happen when both drives are connected.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Apr 2013   #6
PC Pinky

Windows 7 Professional 32bit

Thank again. I will follow your advice and check out a few more settings.
All my problems started when Outlook refused to open, both extend.dat and outlook.pst causing problems. I corrected that but then found that when pressing 'Send/Receive' button in Outlook, I was informed "you don't have the appropriate permission to perform this operation".
Other small glitches have also appeared in various programs I use. Plus my 1TB external HD dropped all my back-ups :-(
After two weeks of trying I feel that a 'Format' and a 'Reinstall' would be my best option.
I have ran a McAfee virus scan, a Malwarebytes scan and SuperAntiSpyware scan but to no avail.
What do you think, should I 'Format' and 'Reinstall' as I have again backed up all the files I need?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Apr 2013   #7

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

I would, and stop using MucAfee.


Ask any questions b4 you start, we`re glad to help.

Have you found the proper key to bring up your boot options during 1st boot ?

As stated, don`t wipe out your other partitions, just format C, make sure you know it`s exact size so you don`t choose the wrong partition.

Here`s another tutorial.

Clean Install Windows 7
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Apr 2013   #8
PC Pinky

Windows 7 Professional 32bit

I did reset the boot menu to boot from the CD/DVD drive first.
Excuse me ignorance but what are MSE and MBAM.
Thanks again you guys :-)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Apr 2013   #9

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 10 Pro Insider Preview 64-bit

Outlook refused to open, and you are scanning with McAfee?
McAfee causes many a problems with your network. Any of the network resources may malfunction due to McAfee's existence.

First try uninstall McAfee Using McAfee Removal Tool. Use Microsoft Security Essentials as your antivirus with windows inbuilt firewall, and free MBAM as the on demand scanner.
Download, install and update those, and then run full system scans with both of them, one by one.

If still the problem remains, reinstall MS office. That may fix the Outlook issue.

If you want to have a clean reinstall , the best policy is to do a Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7, which works similarly good for retail.

While doing a clean reinstall, better you detouch (remove the sata and power) the other HDD which you want to be untouched at all.

In the step #8 0f Clean Install Windows 7, all your partitions will be listed. On the top, there will be a 100 MB partition, without any drive letter (system reserved). Select it, and delete it. It will show an unallocated space then. Next, below it, there will be your C partition. Delete it, too. There will be a total unallocated space.
Format C: drive partition-1.jpg

Dont touch the other partitions at all, as you dont want to do anything with them.

Now, select the unallocated space. Click the "new" button and continue.
Format C: drive partition-2.jpg

It will be prompted that windows will make another partition. Accept it. Follow the other steps to complete the installation.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Apr 2013   #10

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

Thank You Archie
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Format C: drive partition

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