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Bootable CD

I am trying to format a HD ready for a re-install of Win XP. When trying to format it using the Win XP disk, it takes ages....approx 4-5 hours!! I reckon I need a bootable CD with utilities so I can format it from that. My floppy drive isn't working so I can't use my Win 98 bootable floppy disk.

Anyine recommend a good Boot CD with which I can prepare the HD for my XP install?

Thanks
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paulmac110
Asked:
paulmac110
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1 Solution
 
shankshankCommented:
bootdisk.com

you will find whatever you need.
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jasfoutCommented:
if your Win98 install disk is second edition, you can boot from it to fdisk/format the drive.
However if you are installing WinXp you will probably want to at least do a quick format for NTFS during the install rather than using the FAT32 that Win98 provides.
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SaquangCommented:
Paul, just put your winxp cd into the cd drive
reboot
go into your bios and set it to boot from CD
you will have the option to format your hd in the process


good luck
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gonzal13RetiredCommented:
Format for NTFS. It allows for more options with WIN XP.
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paulmac110Author Commented:
Saquang - I already tried formatting from the XP install disk. After 2.5 hours it had still only formatted 26%!  This is why I am trying to format using another utility disk nefore I install XP.
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shankshankCommented:
how big is the HD? are you doing FULL or quick format
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SoyYopCommented:
If you use bootdisk.com, BE SURE YOU FORMAT YOUR HD USING NTFS. Look at the included aefdisk.

If you setup windows xp on FAT and then you convert it no ntfs, the cluster size is different. Performance is not the same!

You may also look inside http://www.thefreecountry.com/utilities/partitioneditors.shtml

I think http://www.compuapps.com/download/Swissknife/swissknife.htm is what you need. Partition and Formatting should take a third of the time.

Luck,
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jasfoutCommented:
>When trying to format it using the Win XP disk, it takes ages....approx 4-5 hours!!

If it takes that long, it is likely to be a failing drive.

Before you do any formatting you might want to do a thorough scan of the drive.

create this bootable cd...
http://ubcd.sourceforge.net/download.html
...to scan the drive
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rliptrotCommented:
Use bartpe or gparted.

Bartpe is a bootable version of windows that you can add plugins into i.e. partition magic or diskeeper etc.  It loads a cd based version of windows into ram and doesn't use the HDD so your free to change anything you want to the drive.  Great for this sort of work in diagnosing HDD issues or recovering faulty drives.

Gparted is a linux based disk utility that can format drives into any format ntfs, fat and other flavours for various OS's.  This is again a bootable CD.

Both of these are freeware GNU downloads

Gparted - http://gparted.sourceforge.net/livecd.php
Bartpe - http://www.nu2.nu/pebuilder/

Have fun
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Bozwell99Commented:
I don't think a boot disk is going to help you here. Sounds more like there is something wrong with the HD, or the way it is set up, and it will be slow to format whatever method you use.
I recommend you go the the website of whoever manufacturer's the HD and download their HD testing tools to see if they pick up anything wrong with the HD.
Also double check that the drive is correctly set to master/slave on its jumpers (you don't say if it is IDE, SATA or SCSI HD).
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HarrisIntegrationCommented:
Bozwell99 and I were thinking the same thing. How long a full format takes depends on:
1. the size of the hard drive
2. the speed of the PC/server you are using to format the drive

If you are formatting a 250GB hard drive on a machine that's got a processor under 1GHz and 128MB RAM, it might just take 5 or 6 hours with the XP CD - but it will take a long time to format the drive no matter what utility you use.

If you have formatted similar drives in machines with similar hardware configurations and this one is taking a lot longer than those, then it may be a hardware issue and it would be best to get a utility from the manufacturer (usually available from manufacturer's websites these days) to do a low level format.  On older hardware with large drives, these can take a day or two, but once they are done you will have the piece of mind of knowing that any bad sectors have been repaired or mapped out so you won't lose data or have a corrupted install.
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paulmac110Author Commented:
LOL @ Bootdisk.com!   I donwloaded several files and utilities after paying $4.00. Low and behold I ran my weekly virus scan tonight and found a Trojan embedded in one of the files I downloaded from BOOTDISK.COM.


So, I would warn anyone contemplating a visit to bootdisk.com not to go there. They are hosting infected files!!  
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paulmac110Author Commented:
I downloaded a virus from bootdisk.com, the filename was zerocmos.zip

So much for bootdisk.com!
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KidLibCommented:
The length of time it takes to do a full format of an NTFS partition is dependent upon the size of the partition, the amount of RAM and the speed of the CPU.

If you have an older PC and are trying to format a large HD (250GB+), then it would not be unusual for it to take a long time.

Non-technical advice from the bad old days of dial-up modems....start the format at night before you go to sleep and in the morning, it should be done :)
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jasfoutCommented:
repost:
>When trying to format it using the Win XP disk, it takes ages....approx 4-5 hours!!

If it takes that long, it is likely to be a failing drive.

Before you do any formatting you might want to do a thorough scan of the drive.

create this bootable cd...
http://ubcd.sourceforge.net/download.html
...to scan the drive


Ultimate Boot CD  from sourceforge.net is safe and free
It has all kinds of diagnostic software and manufacturer software for scans
This is the most universal solution but...

otherwise as stated by Bozwell99, goto to the manufacturer's(of the hard drive) website and download the software there.
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SoyYopCommented:
Virus: I think not. What your antivirus detected was a program to erase CMOS. This program has legitimate uses (but DON'T RUN IT UNLESS YOU KNOW WHAT ARE YOU DOING)

The problem is, same code is used in some virus, and the antivirus got confused, as it don't know where code comes from. Is most probably a false alarm (Have you read the info on the web site?)
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