Hexadecimal and HDD - What happens if I change the hex #s?

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Alphabeta525

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Jan 9, 2019
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Just looking for information on what could happen if I changed hex numbers on any sort of data storage device. Example- hdd, thumb drive, memory card.
 
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Depends on where on the disk you did the modification. If the sector belonged to the boot partition, then the PC wouldn't boot. If the sector belonged to a data file, then it may not open. If the file belongs to a critical Windows file, then Windows wouldn't run right.
 

Alphabeta525

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Joined
Jan 9, 2019
Messages
7
Depends on where on the disk you did the modification. If the sector belonged to the boot partition, then the PC wouldn't boot. If the sector belonged to a data file, then it may not open. If the file belongs to a critical Windows file, then Windows wouldn't run right.

If I were to do this on a memory card with a bunch of text files would it be erasing them or just really messing up its data? I'm trying to learn as much as I can with programming and how things inside of computers work. Thank you for relpying :)
 
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This'll date me, but back when I had only dos 5, I opened a file (in the os) with a hex editor, changed 'one' charactor, re-booted. That killed it! Well, I re-installed dos, - the 5¼" floppy disks. Never tried anything like that again.
I prolly installed dos 100 times, 'cause of experimenting.
(286 pc 4 MEGS ram, 120 MEG hdd!)
 

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Allan
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May 24, 2003
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You can use this free program to change HEX numbers, it has a Read Only mode that doesn't actually change anything but lets you see what the changes would look like :-

https://mh-nexus.de/en/hxd/

Clicking on Tools will give options to look at Drives or Ram in Read Only mode.

Please don't actually change anything you are unsure about !
 
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