Help Formatting problems HDD

  Scubaman 11:07 13 Sep 2012

I have a spare IDE drive installed on my PC and am trying to format it. I get the following message: Windows cannot format this drive. Quit any disk utilities or other programs that are using this drive and make sure that no window is diplaying the contents of the drive. I then tried to format using the command prompt but got the following message: Format cannot run because the volume is in use by another process. Format may run if this volume is dismounted first. Force dismount? Yes. Cannot lock the drive. The volume is still in use. What am I doing wrong?

  northumbria61 15:39 13 Sep 2012

Try looking in Task Manager to see if anything is running and if so close it from there. You should be able to format from right click on Computer - Manage - Disk Management - right click on the drive you want to format (care needed-choose correct drive)

  rdave13 00:46 14 Sep 2012

This will be up to you as it can be risky. Search for a program called UNLOCKER. Read the help files and it will allow you to 'unlock' the drive. DO NOT SELECT THE C: DRIVE BY MISTAKE. Although it's for files and folders it will unlock a drive.

I shouldn't but here's a link. Download link for the freeware is under the heading •Download for Windows 2000 / XP / 2003 / Vista / Windows 7 - Unlocker is Freeware. Rest are links for advertised programs.

  Scubaman 18:48 16 Sep 2012

Hi, thanks for the advice. When I accessed disk management and tried to select the 'D' drive the format option is not highlighted. I have run the unlocker and when I tried the unlockedr again just to make sure it had run I got the message No locking handle found. I have since tried to format but get the same messages. Anythng else I can try?

  lotvic 19:05 16 Sep 2012

I use the Free EaseUS Partition Manager ClickHere once you have chosen what you want to do to HDD and you click on 'Apply' it tells you if you need to restart pc so jobs can be done before pc boots into Windows

  rdave13 19:06 16 Sep 2012

Try the delete option in Unlocker. Make sure it's the right drive. Reboot. Hopefully, after a reboot Windows will initialize it or load drivers for it. Please be careful which drive you are selecting.

  rdave13 19:11 16 Sep 2012

lotvic , bit worried as no locking handle found yet it's being used by another process.

Scubaman , I'd be inclined to buy a Sata/Ide enclosure to fit the drive in for deleting then formatting. If you're happy to use free hard drive managers then use lotvic's recommendation.

  lotvic 20:42 16 Sep 2012

rdave13, I thought the problem was "Cannot lock the drive. The volume is still in use" ?

I had drive that I couldn't format etc in Windows Disk management as it kept saying 'drive in use'. Using EaseUS I had no prob deleting partition and formatting spare HDD, so thought it would be useful for Scubaman as EaseUS partition manager does it at restart before Windows starts.

  rdave13 21:02 16 Sep 2012

lotvic , yes it should work but there's another thread here, albeit using another hard drive manager, that's buggered thing up. Thinking that managing a hard drive via usb might be safer as I still don't like this volume being used by another process malarki and I'd bet it's something to do with the main drive.

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