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reformatting hard drive

Posted on 1998-12-22
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Last Modified: 2010-04-27
long story short. I had windows 3.1 installed. I desided to
install windows 98 over it. Well just before the windows 98 install was done the comuter crashed. I have tried to get things going again. just cant.

What I want to do is just reformat the hard drive and start over again with just dos.

what are the steps that I have to do.
I need step by step instruction.
do i have to make a system disk first.
what about the dos already on the hard drive

help
tom
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Question by:thekeep
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rmarotta earned 400 total points
ID: 1013942
thekeep,
If you want to install Dos version 5, or newer, you will need a copy of it on floppy disks.
You can create a system disk to boot the computer without installing all the Dos programs though.
To format the HDD and start over requires a few files to be copied to the startup floppy.
I'll list what's needed to install Windows from a CD-ROM in case that's what you want to do.

Start by creating a bootable floppy by using the format command from a Dos prompt.
     FORMAT A: /S
This will erase everything on the disk and transfer the system files needed to boot the computer.
Next, copy the following files to the disk:
HIMEM.SYS
FORMAT.COM
MSCDEX.EXE
*CD Driver file*

In addition, copy autoexec.bat & config.sys  Edit or create them using any text editor to contain the following statements.

Autoexec.bat needs one line in it:
     MSCDEX.EXE /D:MSCD001

Config.sys file needs two:
     DEVICE=HIMEM.SYS
     DEVICE=*****.SYS /D:MSCD001
     (***** = the filename of your CD-ROM driver)

Boot with the floppy to test that it works.
You can test access for the CD-ROM by typing this command:
    DIR D:\ /S
Format the hard drive with the command:
FORMAT C:
The drive is now ready to install Windows.
Type D:\Win95\Setup.exe to start the installation.

Let me know what I left out or if you need more.
Regaards,
Ralph
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Expert Comment

by:gaestar
ID: 1013943
There is a more simple way to install win95.
Copy the "win95" directory from your cdrom to your hard disk.
Then, delete all the others directory and files.
To delete directory, use :   deltree directoryname  ( dos version 6.22 )
In the root ( c: ), show all the files by using :  attrib -h
and delete all the files using   :    delete *.*
go to win95 directory and launch setup.exe

That's all
Good luck
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Author Comment

by:thekeep
ID: 1013944
first i have to find a old dos inorder to input my dos 6.0 (because its a upgrade) until then
im stuck


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Author Comment

by:thekeep
ID: 1013945
the dos on the machine now is the dos install( but uncomplete) version of windows 98
have to find a old dos to start with the up grade to 6.0
tom
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Expert Comment

by:rmarotta
ID: 1013946
Tom,
Sorry about posting all the info about the Windows install. (That's what happens every time I assume something......)

If you have the three-disk set of MS-Dos 6 Upgrade, you already have everything you need!

Simply insert Disk-1 and boot the computer.

Setup may warn you that it has found Dos files on your hard disk, but just let it continue to replace your current version of Dos.

Let me know if you need more help with it.
Ralph
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Author Comment

by:thekeep
ID: 1013947
thanks guys. I understand the consept now.

I just could not get anything to run using a system disk
what I have done is make a system disk  format a: /s it has
command.com and format himem msdex  but no cd rom files
I then formated drive c: ( by the way decovered it is a compressed drive, there for have drive c and drive h). Now when I use the system disk it go to the a> prompt
I then change it to the c> and there is nothing at all, every thing is gone.
I cant reload the dos 6.2 by booting cause it says "this is a upgrade must have another
dos in it in order to upgrade. So much for that. What I will work on now is getting the
computer to reconize my cd rom. I will try what you recommened. I quess there is no device=c in the recommendation cause im dealing with a system disk using drive a
RIGHT???
I have problems before because i put in a new cd rom in a machine that had none.
I quess I will have to play around with autoexec and config.sys files to see if i can
get the computer to reconize the cdrom  

1.can I take the cdrom drives off the install cd rom disk and put it on the a: disk
can I use word pad in windows 95 (my machine up stairs) as a text editor, cause my
edit and qbasic is gone in dos.  

can I email you for future question or do i still have to go thru expert exchange for help

thanks tom
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Expert Comment

by:rmarotta
ID: 1013948
Tom,
I suggest you remove the drive compression, as it can cause a lot of headaches.  If you need more disk space, new drive prices are lower than ever right now.
To remove it, you'll first need to re-partition & then format your hard drive.
Run FDISK to delete the existing partitions, and then create a new primary Dos partition using the drive's full capacity.
After that, format the drive with the /S parameter and that will make it bootable.

Next, in order for the CD-ROM to be accessed by Dos, you must have the device driver that was written for your CD-ROM drive.
This driver is loaded in the config.sys, as I explained earlier.

If you need the driver file, let me know the brand & model of the CD-ROM, and we should be able to locate one for it on the web.  I can then show you how to get a system disk from your Win95 CD.

Use of Wordpad will be fine as a text editor, though it's easier to just use Notepad.
The files need to be saved in straight text (ascii) format.

Experts-Exchange is here to allow others to benefit from the answers posted by reading the PAQ. (Past Answered Questions database)  The use of private e-mail would prevent this, so they don't encourage it unless file transfers are needed.
We can continue this thread for as long as you need help.  I'll stay with you until we have you up & running.

Let me know how this goes.

Ralph

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Author Comment

by:thekeep
ID: 1013949
i made a system disk with the a:
it works great
however when I tried to load windows95 (not win98) it hangs up because of the
stupid compressed dive, say not enough memory in drive h ( the compress one )
I have spent all day copy dblspace exe and all the other dblspace fines to c
to see if I can bring up the program. No luck it says the the dblspace .bin files are no
good?  they were hidden on the a: drive so I had to use my upstairs machine to take off the hidden aspect. I have played all day with other dblspace.bin files from different disks
NO LUCK

I will try you suggeston of partitions drive

but Im stuck get these options 2nd screen
1. delete primary dos partition
2. delete extended dos
3. delete logical dos drivers in the extended partations
4. delete non-dos partitions

before i go any further i will wait for you answer( PLEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSe

thank you for all your help.. Im learning a lot

its fun


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Expert Comment

by:rmarotta
ID: 1013950
It's not too complicated Tom.  Just follow the numbered selections in the FDISK menus to delete all partitions.
This will completely erase all info on the drive.  You can navigate back and forth using the numbered choices.
When deleted, you can go to the display partition information menu selection to be certain there are none remaining.
At that time, create the new Dos primary partition.
Then it's ready for format.
Let me know if you need more.
Ralph
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Author Comment

by:thekeep
ID: 1013951
well ITS ALIVE!. well almost about 99.9%
When booting up now I get a small error. stating cant find "vnetsup.vxd"
either in system .ini or the register. I look in find files no luck. I look in system. ini
no luck. Looks like its in the register????
I thinking about download a reg editor to see if it will find the program and correct it
any suggestions

tom
thanks for all your help


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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:rmarotta
ID: 1013952
Are you sure the call for that file isn't in system.ini?
Try a search for it while viewing from sysedit.
You can run regedit from the run line under the start button.
Use the find feature to search for the string and delete it.
Be sure to backup the registry before making changes.
Ralph

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Author Comment

by:thekeep
ID: 1013953
i just copied the file from my new machine pasted it into windows/system
now the error is gone on start up.
runs good i tried find it using regedit no luck?

I did down load regclean ran it and still did not find the error
o well

but runs execellent now
thanks a lot
tom
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