formatting the C drive

  StephenRogers 21:13 27 Nov 2006

The long and exciting journey in the life of my computer has led it to point where it has 2 internal hard drives with a copy of windows XP home installed in each one.

It is now time for the version on the C drive to go. Partly because the D drive is newer, larger, and reputedly less likely to fail. I haven't used the version on the C drive for years.

I had hoped it would be a simple matter of reformatting the C drive, but I get the message "Windows was unable to complete the format"
There's about 5 gig of data left on the drive after I've removed all the documents and other programs
I'm pretty sure I've done it before with no problem - do I need to use the Windows disk to uninstall it perhaps?

  Rtus 21:23 27 Nov 2006

Its probably easier to use Partition magic or acronis to delete the partition then format.I would be inclined to unplug the newr unit first, then reset the drive jumpers /position so the larger newer one becomes C:

  StephenRogers 21:29 27 Nov 2006

I've not got to box opening status yet, and am wondering whether to manually delete as much of XP as possible, then try formatting again.
Not sure why partition magic? - It's a drive rather than a partition.

  ed-0 21:41 27 Nov 2006

When you start the computer, do you get the option to boot from either version of windows? If you do, then you can not delete the "C" drive as this has essential files needed to boot the other version of windows.

That is why it will not let you format the "C" drive when you are in windows "D" drive.

Can you list the boot.ini file from

control panel > system > system properties > advanced > startup and recovery > system startup > edit.

this will open notepad.

  StephenRogers 21:55 27 Nov 2006

[boot loader]
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition" /fastdetect /NoExecute=OptIn
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition" /fastdetect

So it offers a choice on start up for 3 seconds ( D drive version highlighted) then defaults to the D drive version.

  Rtus 21:55 27 Nov 2006

Yes I know its a drive ,but all drives before formatting /loading systems (files etc) have to be partitioned then formatted before use with windows.Im not sure why you landed off with 2 versions of Xp on one unit.maybe you added the 2nd OS when you had drive fitted? however taking ed-0 comment into account.with partition magic just hide the c: drive,check the other drive has Active partition,close can then reboot,to windows if all goes to plan its a seperate O/S if not booting correctly then

  Rtus 22:01 27 Nov 2006

reverse the hidden drive to normal (make c: unhidden

  ed-0 22:25 27 Nov 2006

You have 2 versions of windows. Both versions boot from the "C" drive.

If you wanted to erase the second edition of XP, that would be easy, you just edit the boot.ini file to

boot loader]
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect

Because you want to format the drive "C" with the boot.ini file on it, you had better back up all you have on the "D" drive. I think you will need to disconnect the "C" drive from the computer and format the "D" drive and re-install windows.

Other options are transfer all from "D" to "C". Then edit the boot.ini file. Then clone "C" to "D"

You can easily see if the "D" drive will boot with out the aid of the "C" drive. Just close the machine down, pull the power or IDE ribbon cable from the rear of the "C" drive and see if it boots.

  StephenRogers 22:55 27 Nov 2006

I think Ill go for the trial of acronis click here , as Partition magic seems to be either more than I can afford or a free 'small unfunctional version'
click here

  StephenRogers 23:19 27 Nov 2006

I need to sleep, acronis is failing to register, and it's going to take time to back up the D drive, so I'll try to hide the C drive using acronis in a couple of days.
I am wondering how I would get back into acronis to unhide the c drive if the OS fails to boot? Still -guess I'll fall off that bridge when I come to it.

  Rtus 11:59 28 Nov 2006

Sorry I neglected to say Pm's a bootable Cd operates on its own not in windows as such
however heres a free to use similar version

download >
click here

read (print)instructions >
click here

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