Format command

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davidgraham16

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Dec 31, 2001
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25
Hi
I have picked up various bits of knowledge from the internet on formatting prior to a clean install. I even successfully implemented the advice. However, I would like someone to further explain some of the tricks I used:

1. I used the command A:\>Format C /s and not just A:\>Format C
Can anyone tell me why I did this? whats the purpose of the /s?

2. I was supposed to use FDISK - before the format (I think?)
However, this only produced a message "the disc is already partitioned" so I ignored this bit and everything was OK. Why did I get advice about FDISK, I didn't seem to need it?

thanks for any replies
David
 

ETS

Joined
Oct 13, 1999
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972
The /s after the format will cause the system files to automatically install to your hard drive immediately after the format is complete and make it bootable.

All hard drives must be partitioned prior to being formatted. The FDISK command is used to do that. Your's is already partitioned so you can skip that and go ahead and reformat if you like. However, If you don't know what version of FDISK was used to partition the drive previously, it's safer to redo it.
 

davidgraham16

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Joined
Dec 31, 2001
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25
Why is it safer to know which version of FDISK has been used?
Also, in general, can I assume that a PC which has been running windows has definitly been partitioned in the past or do some machines run windows without a partitioning of the hard disc. I thought partitioning was done to create a virtual drive on the C drive.
Thanks for the previous reply.
David
 
Joined
Dec 19, 2001
Messages
149
fdisk is what puts the fat ( file allocation table)
on the partition. In other words it slices the
partition into little sections which are used
to put your files on. If you originally had
win98, the partitions should be fat 32 which
is what you want. If it originally had win95
it could be fat 16 or 32. If it was 16 then it
would pay to fdisk with large disk option.
 

ETS

Joined
Oct 13, 1999
Messages
972
All hard drives must be partitioned before you can format and run any Operating system such as Windows. So you can be sure that if Windows is running then the drive has been partitioned. If you have just one drive letter on it ( e.g. C: ) it is still a partition, all be it a single one.

It is safer to know which version of FDISK was used because not all versions will be fully compatible with your operating system and could cause problems. It's always best to use the version that comes with the operating system you plan to install.
 
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