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clearing system disk

Posted on 2000-04-23
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Last Modified: 2010-04-27
Used Compaq LTE 5300 laptop.Pre-loaded with Windows 95.I have a full version of Windows 98 Rev."B" which I tried to install, but system informed me that I already had a version installed and would not proceed.I swithed to "DOS" and tried to Format "C" ."Format got to 4% and terminated.HOW Can I Clear System Disk, so that I can Install My Windows 98?
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Question by:jrrankin
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Author Comment

by:jrrankin
ID: 2741908

i have checked out some "disk" programs, they all indicate that needed files are protected. I want to start with a clean disk..I would offer more points if I had any more..any help will be greatly appreciated...thank you
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Expert Comment

by:pjknibbs
ID: 2741986
When you said "switched to DOS", did you actually "Restart in MS-DOS mode" or did you just run a fullscreen DOS prompt? Make sure it was the former, then try the format again.
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Expert Comment

by:micro66
ID: 2742022
Boot from a floppy that has fdisk and other helpful files on it.  Best is to go to a Win98 machine and make a Win98 boot floppy with all the rescue stuff included, including CDROM support.  You do that in Win98 by going to Start, Settings, Control Panel, Add/Remove Programs, and click on the Startup Disk tab.

Then fdisk the hard drive.  If I remember right, Compaq puts a partition on the drive with troubleshooting stuff in it.  Maybe a partitioning program will show you that and you can wipe it out, too.
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Author Comment

by:jrrankin
ID: 2742130
micro66 : tried the disk,when attempting format , it got to 4% complete then i got message: not ready, format terminated.

micro66 : I did start in MS DOS,would not permit the format
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Expert Comment

by:micro66
ID: 2742181
Not "format":  "fdisk"

Boot from a floppy that has fdisk (preferably from win98) on it, from the A: prompt, type fdisk /STATUS and it'll tell you something about the drive's partitions.  [Maybe it's fdisk c: /STATUS]

Starting in MS-DOS can be done from command.com on the hard drive or command.com on the floppy.  I was suggesting the floppy boot so you're not opening any files on the hard drive at all.  Since you don't care about any files on that drive, the most drastic approach is to re-partition the hard drive.  You'll automatically lose any data there, so nothing should be around to restrict anything you want to do.  Then you can re-format the new partition(s) anyway you want.  Then load Win98.
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Accepted Solution

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Agent86 earned 180 total points
ID: 2742421
This can be caused by a couple things
1.Maybe a virus. this can be cleaned with Mcaffee emergency disk. be sure to start the machine with the emergency disk in the drive.
2.make sure you delete the partitions and logical and none dos partitions when running the fdisk. then run the fdisk and partition the drive , then format. if this does not work go to number 3.
3.If a diskmanager program has been run sometime you have to disable the manager using the same disk manager  program that was originally run. then you can usually run the fdisk program, however if you cannot disable the manager or dont' know how, or don't know which one was used, then you can write 0's to the hardrive. this can be done with, what some call low-level format program. this can be found at seagate for seagate drives and western digital for wd drives. I don't know about the others, I know there are some generice low-level formatters out there that will work.
after you low-level, then you run the fdisk make sure you reboot after fdisk.
then format the drive. if this does not work then you have a defect in the drive.
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Author Comment

by:jrrankin
ID: 2742529
still unable to do a format,i'll have to take it back to Compaq
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