Trying to format an old XP hard drive

  alternator 17:00 07 Jan 2011

I initially tried to format the drive via My computer it comes up with an error message saying something is displaying the drive. I tried via MSCONFIG to stop all other programs but could not find any other program operating. Then shut down opened in safe mode with the same result. Then tried with the command prompt and format c: but getting the message." Cannot run as the volume is in use by another process.format may run if this volume is dismounted first do you want to force a dismount? I replied y to the Y/n options it then said "Cannot lock the drive, the volume is still in use".
I would appreciate any help to format this drive thanks in advance

  johndrew 17:09 07 Jan 2011

Is this a SATA or IDE HDD?

If IDE is it selected master or Slave?

Are you using 'Control Panel/Administrative Tools/Computer Management' or a third party application?

  johndrew 17:12 07 Jan 2011

If it is a partition on the primary drive (the drive with Windows on it) you will not be able to format it without booting from another source.

  alternator 17:12 07 Jan 2011

Sorry you are asking something out my knowledge range. It is a Mesh Laptop approx 10 year old. Is there a way I can find out

  alternator 17:13 07 Jan 2011

I don't have 3rd party software

  alternator 17:15 07 Jan 2011

yes the OS is operating from the only HD on the laptop (No partitions)

  lotvic 17:33 07 Jan 2011

If you only have one harddrive the only way you can format it is if you boot up from a CD/DVD install disc and do it as part of the install.
(Only other way is to take HDD out and hook it up to another pc as a slave and then format it via other pc)

Are you intending to install an Op System on the laptop? it's not a lot of use without one...
Do you have a CD/DVD install disc (XP, VISTA etc) also Product Key and also the Drivers you will need for a reinstall.

As it is a laptop it may have a restore to factory fresh program on a 'hidden' partition on the harddrive. What model name/number is the Mesh Laptop?

  lotvic 17:40 07 Jan 2011

Just to make it clear - the reason you can't format C: HDD is because you are using it and Windows XP can't carry out the order to delete itself....

  alternator 17:40 07 Jan 2011

It is a Mesh T7521T. yes I have an install disc and product key. I have looked at the install but couldn't see a format option. should it boot up from the DVD drive. I will check the CMOS and see what order it is booting from.

  alternator 17:46 07 Jan 2011

Yes order is DVD,Floppy, HD. Have tried starting computer with DVD in the drive, but it ignores it and boots from the HD. So I assume there is not a useable OS (until installed) on this DVD.

  alternator 17:51 07 Jan 2011

Could I partition the current HD install the new version of XP on the new partition. Then format the old version of XP with all the other dross on the original drive?

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