Formatting command help

Help please.  My friend (Andrew JW you know who you are) has cocked up his mums PC.. The PC was running Win 95 (Rel 2 I think), with a 6gb hard drive divided into 3 partitions.

He noticed the C drive was a bit full, so he moved a stack of files to E:.  Of course now the PC wont even boot.  Tried using boot disc to get into dos, to copy files back.  It moved some but refused to move others.  Went through lots of options, and ended up doing the del command on C,D & E to start afresh.  Decided to install Win 98, but message read there was another op system installed so couldn't continue.

To cut a VERY long story short, decision was made to delete all partitions (didn't like them anyway) and reformat the remaining whole drive.  Partitions deleted, but unable to format drive using

format c: /s
 any many derivations of that from the dos prompt (win898 start up disk got us there).  Get the message - bad command.  

Now completely lost.

Help please!!!!
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you didnt say anything about making any new partitions or partition
I 'm guessing you used fdisk to delete your partitions if so go back and check and see if u infact have any defined and if c: is active
also you said win98 setup said there was aready a system on drive    you maynot have deleted your system   try boot with win98 boot disk , select option #2 no cdrom support  after booting to A:    type  sys C:  enter and reboot without bootdisk  
CharlieJoeAuthor Commented:
Cheers for the above - will check tonight & report back
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WIN98 setup will report that there is an operating system present even if the WINDOWS directory has been deleted if other system files still are present in the root directory.  If starting over, don't format /s, just reformat, boot with the WIN98 floppy and install to a clean, fat32 disk.  Setup will install the appropriate boot files (, etc.) in the root directory.
If you get the message 'bad command', it's simply because'format' is a DOS command this is not necessarily in your floppy. You will find all the commands in the \windows\command directory.
Otherwise, this DOS command CANNOT format a FAT32 partition.

So the best solution for you would be :
 - delete all partitions, create at least one and make it active.

 - (optional) format this partition by using the format command (booting with a floppy where you have the format command copied).

 - Boot from CD to install W98 (the last step was optional since W98 should propose you to format the target partition. It's also better since you can directly format in FAT32 whereas before you could only format in FAT16)

PS : check you can boot from CD .... most recent machines can if the boot sequence includes the CD Boot before the HDD boot, and, of course, if the CDROM itself is boot-able....

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It sounds like you tried to move the WINDOWS folder to another drive. When you did that, you also moved the WINDOWS\COMMAND folder which is where DOS programs such as FORMAT are stored. You need to find where the FORMAT.COM file is located, either on your floppy or one of your partitions. It has to be the same version as the OS you boot to or you get an "Incorrect DOS version". If you find it, for example, in E:\WINDOWS\COMMAND, simply run E:\WINDOWS\COMMAND\FORMAT C: /S
CharlieJoeAuthor Commented:
Thankx - all sorted now

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