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InfiniteZero

Reformating Question

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My computer's been acting up lately; and after about 10 virus and spyware scans with no results, I've just decided to reformat and be done with it. My only question is, how exactly would I go about this? I have my windows XP disc and everything, I just need to know how to wipe everything clean as if it just came from the factory. I have a basic Dell with XP installed, any help is greatly appreciated.

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Your going to need to put in your xp disc, and restart then boot from the cd. You may need to change the boot order.

And this will fully erase everything on my computer rather than just putting it onto a different partition like every other method I've tried? I'm pretty decent with computers, but this is my first time reformating one.

Oh, and if you know or could tell me how exactly I would change the boot order? I tried doing that the other day when my friend told me about it, and I just kept getting errors that told me to reboot. Sorry to be such a bother but I'm sick of my computer being like this.

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Sorry for the triple post, but, nobody can help? Trying to do this as quickly as possible.

Do you have a floppy drive and a bootable win98 startup disk...if you do, you can put that in,reboot,use fdisk to delete everything on your drive,then boot up with your XP cd and install Windows

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InfiniteZero;I hope someone that knows XP can help you.Surely there is a way other than using an old 98 boot disk to reformat XP.

If you are going to use a floppy then in BIOS(before Windows boots)In your case the Dell Bios area .You should have some kind of boot order.If you normally boot from your HD it should be first in the primary order.You need to change this to the floppy first if you are going to use the floppy:CD first if you are going to boot from a CD.Then reboot.

I am going to WARN you in advance if you use the 98 boot disk & delete your partitions with fdisk then your OS will be gone.Whether this actually erases the data I have some doubts but you will no longer have access to it.Reboot.Then fdisk again setting up new partitions the way you had your old ones.Then format each partition.Then do the XP setup or installation.I'm betting you have a Dell ghost or clone disk so follow Dells instructions on using it.

The link below has some information you should read & a zip file I posted for a Windows ME boot disk.It will do the same thing a 98 bootdisk will.

http://www.testmy.net/forum/t-12472.0

In Windows ME in My Computer in the file pull down I have a format option .Does XP have this?

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even though u partitioned and reinstalled windows maybe you can try this if u want to, i have a dell and my restore cd gives the same error every time i reformat.

Ive had the computer about 6 years and ive done about 4-5 formats and every time it says Press something to retry or press something to fail or restart.

and ive found that if you hold down the fail or retry key, after about 8 consecutive tries it starts the format.

This could just be something defective with my disk, but anythings worth a shot.

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InfiniteZero;coknuck's link should allow you to use the Windows XP installation CD.I don't now how to access them but it should have drivers on it.I thought drivers would be installed during the installation.Go into your Device manager & try updating the drivers.

I'm familiar with 98 & ME but do you have an options,cabs or installation file inside Windows XP?

Also if you describe how your PC is now partitioned maybe we could help.You say you have 33G in an old partityion to reallocate.I'm not sure exactly what you mean.Like is this data you want to save or is this just the old leftover partition you want to get rid of?

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My computer's been acting up lately; and after about 10 virus and spyware scans with no results, I've just decided to reformat and be done with it. My only question is, how exactly would I go about this? I have my windows XP disc and everything, I just need to know how to wipe everything clean as if it just came from the factory. I have a basic Dell with XP installed, any help is greatly appreciated.

The easiest way for me to start fresh with a completely clean HD is to wipe my HD with Paragon Hard Disk Manager 6.0 It allows me to wipe my HD clean and then allows me to reformat and to create partitions and back ups....Once HD is wiped you can either restore from back up or from system recovery Cd's that come with your computer' I would not simply format my computer as it leaves all kinds of stuff' such as registries of previous installations like NORTON or whatever you previously had installed' including malware and viruses' I recommend that you purchase Paragon or a similar product to wipe your computer clean' reformatting alone will not do the job......

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I'm sure there are many free utilities but are limited versions' as for kildisk is concerned they have the free version and they sell the pro version' if the freeware is so great why do they sell a professional version?

edit' Paragon is an option that works great for me'  if i didn't own it i would get the freeware on your link'

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Thanks everybody for the help. To the person who asked how I partitioned, the 33gigs is the partition I'm currently on (yes still working it out lol) and I wanted to get rid of it completey, spyware, malware and all. The 3gigs is the new partition I made to install windows, I already have it installed and everything, but I seem to be having problems installing the drivers.

I went to the driver list as you mentioned, and it says which drivers it finds but has no name for, but when it searches the CDs I have it never finds them. Any help?

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Just to shorten this up and hopefully get a quicker reply:

I'm just lost about how to install my drivers right now, that's about all I need help with. Everybody else has answered my questions except to the drivers. I can't access the internet til my drivers are installed so I can't do autoupdate, and I've been in the driver manager and there are a few that have exclamation points but when I click update or uninstall and try to reinstall them, it can never find them off the disc. Thanks in advance and sorry for the double post.

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InfiniteZero ;I have Windows ME & have had 98SE.I haven't had XP but I have read several things about it.

In the Windows XP you loaded in the Windows folder is their an Options.CABS or Install file ?In Windows ME this is where you find the windows loaded drivers.If you have these folders & they have driver files in them or if you can find driver file elsewhere in Windows.This is where you want to go with the have disk.

Like in have disk location:  C:WindowsOptionsCABS or C:WindowsInf.

To see these files you may have to open C:Windows select the tools pulldown Folder Options View then check something show hidden files & folders then uncheck hide file extensions.

I hope this helps like I said there are others with XP that should be more help.The 3 G partition seems a little small for XP but if you can run it with other software you will load good.

Just a question how much of the 33 G partition is used?

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