[solved] How do you Format a 98 Computer? Then reinstall?

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computer_pet

Thread Starter
Joined
Jun 22, 2003
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484
Hi,

I have a Windows 98 Computer that I wish to format. I have never formated a hard drive before, and do not really know how to do it. After I format the computer I wish to re-install windows 98 onto it.

I know I need the 98 installation disc, I have two CD-Rom's.
  1. Microsoft Windows 98 for PCs without Windows: SECOND EDITION, has serial number
  2. Microsoft Windows98, No serial number
I have a Floppy Disk drive (drive letter a:), a normal CD-Rom drive (drive letter E:) and a CD-RW burner (drive letter D:)

What do I need to do before I format, and how do I do the Format?

Computer Info
  • AcerPower
  • Intel Pentium II (Designed for Windows 95)
  • 320MB RAM
  • Capacity: 2.99GB, free space at moment 344MB

Boot Sequence
1. Floppy Disk
2. Hard Disk
3. CD-Rom

Will I need alot of time to do the procedure?

Thanks
:D
 
Joined
Apr 26, 2003
Messages
5,837
Hi computer_pet... Go Here for a comprehensive tutorial on accomplishing what you want to do.
 

Miz

Joined
Jul 1, 2002
Messages
2,146
Just to be on the safe side, before you format, download and run Magic Jellybean's Keyfinder. It will give you the product keys (serial numbers) for both the version of Windows you have installed as well as MS Office (if installed). Nothing's more frustrating to go through the entire format/reinstall only to get to the "enter the product key" screen and find that the key you thought you had isn't a key at all.
 
Joined
Mar 9, 2003
Messages
4,699
PRE-FORMAT CHECK LIST
(A work in progress)

ARE YOU SURE YOU WANT TO FORMAT?
You are aware that by formatting you will clean the disk and lose all the programs and data on that disk.

HAVE YOU BACKED UP ALL YOUR FILES?
The normal assumption is that you back up FILES and DATA and NOT PROGRAMS.
Programs are not backed up because:
1. They all have to be RE-INSTALLED after a format anyway,
2. You should have the original disks/CD's they came on, or
3. You should create a separate folder for all programs that you downloaded from the net so they can be re-installed later.

HAVE YOU BACKED UP ALL YOUR DRIVERS AND SAVED THEM TO CD?
I recommend this program, http://www.jermar.com/wdrvbck1.exe, be down loaded and run so it will find and save all your drivers to a folder (and many many subfolders). It will save you HOURS of looking for drivers after you re-install Windows. When re-installing drivers and it asks you for the disk/CD, click on browse and point the search to your driver backup folder or CD.


For everything you ever wanted to know about your PC, and them some.
Download the Enterprise System Information version of aida32.exe
http://www.aida32.hu/aida-download.php?bit=32

Two more http://www.belarc.com/free_download.html

http://www.webattack.com/get/wcpuid.shtml


DO YOU HAVE THE WINDOWS CD TO INSTALL FROM?

Is the CD labeled INSTALL or UPGRADE?
Usually either can be used for a clean install, but the procedure will vary slightly.
Or is it the (dreaded) manufacture's RESTORE CD? IF all you have is a RESTORE CD a "modified approach" will have to be taken.

WHAT IS THE MAKE AND MODEL OF YOUR PC?
Packard Bell, HP and Compaq usually have a proprietary partition that could cause problems.

DO YOU HAVE THE WINDOWS PRODUCT KEY FOR THE INSTALL MEDIA?
This is a 25 digit alphanumeric key needed to install.
Download and run this small program to find your current product key for both Windows and MS Office. Key Finder http://www.magicaljellybean.com/keyfinder.shtml


HAVE YOU CONSIDERED PARTITIONING YOUR HARD DRIVE?
Partitioning has many advantages.
1. You can create a small 1.5 to 3.5 gig first partition for your OS only. The size will vary with the OS you use. If you ever have to format and re-install again this is the ONLY partition that you will have to format and you don't lose your data files.
2. You keep all programs on another partition. Over installing programs frequently keeps all of your original settings, tweaks, and fine-tuning.
3. You keep all your data files on another partition
4. You keep all your multimedia files on another partition.
5. When you back up your files they are all on one partition and easier to find and easier to back up
6. There is far less fragmentation on each partition and running defrag takes considerably less time. You are defragging a smaller drive (partition) and not the whole 40, 80, 120... gig hard drive.

IF partitioning sounds like a good way to go for you here is an excellent tutorial for using FDISK to partition your hard drive.
http://fdisk.radified.com/

A slightly easier to follow guide was written by TSG's very own PyriteChips and can be found here.
http://members.shaw.ca/pyritechips/JimsGuide.htm

IF you think partitioning is a good way to go, but you are put off by all the techie stuff, fear not, there are quite a few people here that can walk you through it.

HAVE YOU BACKED UP ALL YOUR FILES?

Future Considerations

GHOST is a program that will create a one for one image of a file, a folder, or the whole partition or hard drive. It makes re-installing a snap.

GOBACK is another good program to have in your utilities "tool box" as it lets you recover from a small oops to a major "oh s#*%!"

HAVE YOU BACKED UP ALL YOUR FILES? ARE YOU SURE?
Did you remember you?re your email files and address book?
If you use Outlook Express you can use this utility:
http://www.oehelp.com/OEBackup/Default.aspx

How about favorites and history from your browser?
Any chat program files?
 

computer_pet

Thread Starter
Joined
Jun 22, 2003
Messages
484
Thanks Miz,
I did not think you could do that. Is there any way you can find Microsoft Frontpage?
 

computer_pet

Thread Starter
Joined
Jun 22, 2003
Messages
484
I have read everything, and have the following:
  1. A Windows 98 Start-up disk, with CD-Rom Support (tested)
  2. A Windows 98 Second Edition Installation disk (for PCs without Windows) with serial number
  3. All drivers, installed are Microsoft
  4. Have copied any data I wish to keep
  5. When CD-ROM support is enabled my basic CD-Rom Drive letter is F:
  6. Aware that there is no going back
Steps I think I need to do:
Partitioning
  1. Load the computer with CD-ROM support using start-up disk
  2. Type in Fdisk
  3. Answer Yes to the FAT32 system
  4. Select option 4
  5. Check existing partitions
    Below is my view of option 4
    Current fixed disk drive: 1

    Partition | Status | Type | Volume Label | Mbytes | System |Usage
    C: 1 | A | PRI DOS | PHILLIP | 3075 | FAT32 | 100%


    Total disk space is 3079 Mbytes (1 Mbyte = 104856 bytes)


    Press Esc to Continue
  6. Press Esc
  7. Select 3
  8. I know I have to start deleting non-dos partitions then work your way up to logical partitions. Except I have four menu's to choose from, which one do I choose?

    Delete DOS Partition or Logical DOS Drive

    Choose one of the following:

    1. Delete Primary DOS Partition
    2. Delete Extended DOS Partition
    3. Delete Logical DOS Drive(s) in the Extended DOS Partition
    4. Delete Non-DOS Partition

    Enter choice: [ ]

    Press Esc to return to FDISK Options
  9. When finished select Esc
  10. Select Option 1
  11. Select Option 1 Create Primary DOS Partition
  12. Use Maximum available size
  13. Go back to FDISK
  14. Select the Partition you just created active (Through option two)
  15. Restart Computer

Formating Partitions
  1. Start Computer With CD-ROM Support
  2. At A: prompt type: FORMAT C:
  3. Restart

Installing Windows
  1. Start Computer with CD-ROM support
  2. Switch to CD-ROM drive letter (f:)
  3. type setup
  4. follow on screen instructions
  5. Restart (Remove Disk)
  6. Install Drivers
  7. Install Software

Have I got everything Right?

Which option do I select when deleting partitions???

Thanks
 
Joined
Feb 11, 2003
Messages
882
Looks like your ready to go. :)

As far as the partitions go select option 1 delete the primary dos partition once done select option 1 again to create a primary dos partition. (y)
 

computer_pet

Thread Starter
Joined
Jun 22, 2003
Messages
484
Thanks Everyone,
I realized that I had to delete the Primary DOS Partition, as it was the only one. I have completed my format and re-install of Windows. :D :D

The Following are the Instructions I followed:

  1. Load the computer with CD-ROM support using start-up disk
  2. Type in Fdisk
  3. Answer Yes to the FAT32 system
  4. Select option 4
  5. Check existing partitions
  6. Press Esc
  7. Select 3
  8. Enter choice: [1]
  9. Yes
  10. Yes
  11. Yes (Wait till Partition deletes about half minute)
  12. Press Esc to return to FDISK Options
  13. Select Option 1
  14. Select Option 1 Create Primary DOS Partition
  15. Use Maximum available size
  16. Label It
  17. Restart
  18. Start Computer With CD-ROM Support
  19. At A: prompt type: FORMAT C:
  20. Yes
  21. Restart
  22. Start Computer with CD-ROM support
  23. Switch to CD-ROM drive letter F:
  24. type setup
  25. follow on screen instructions
  26. Make new startup disk
  27. Restart (Remove Disk)
  28. Install Drivers
  29. Install Software

I have installed Office and have the Internet working. My Opinion the computer is running alot faster and I could not get networking correct on this computer before formating, but now it is fine (except I can not get the other computers on my network to see the Win98 machine, will create new thread I think)The entire process took me about 40minutes. I though it would take about a hour to Format 3GB but it took about 10min. The main thing that took most of the time was installing Windows 98.

Thanks Everyone for helping me! :D :D :D :D :D :)
 
Joined
Feb 11, 2003
Messages
882
Glad to see you had success. As far as the network is concerned you have to go into network neighborhood properties and setup the network settings. You could probably use the networking wizard to do this. Just make sure you use the same workgroup name as the other puters. :)
 
Joined
Mar 9, 2003
Messages
4,699
CONGRATS on your success!! (y)
It's only scary the first time you do it. :)

IF you ever replace your 3gig HD with a larger one here are a few ideas:

Partition the drive, that way if you re-install windows you just have to format that partition not the whole hard drive.
http://fdisk.radified.com/

Use a disk imaging program such as Norton's Ghost or Power Quest's Drive Image.
You create a bit by bit one to one image of any partition which makes re-install much faster. Also all your drivers are in the image so you don't have to search for and re-install those.
http://ghost.radified.com/

Here is an idea for the 3gig HD if you install a larger HD.
It looks like you already have a second physical drive in your computer, but temporarly install the 3gig as the second HD and use it as an INSTALL disk. Copy each of your program CD's to their own folder, such as Windows, Office, and so on, and install from the HD. Since a hard drive will read and transfer data much faster than a CD it will speed up installs.
 
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