Re-install O/S

To clean up my machine I would like to re-install the O/S. I guess I also need to re-format the HD, but W-7 says re-formatting is not possible because the HD contains the O/S.

My question is do I need to re-format the HD? And if so, how do I do so in the face of W-7’s lack of cooperation?

  • Thanx :rolleyes:

You would partition (and reformat, I’m assuming) the disc during the installation process, not before. The installer should give you the option of how to partition the HDD, and you can just use this step to start with a clean slate. At least, I believe that’s how it was for me.

Reformatting (either quick or thorough) would guarantee that you started with a new installation, no left over files or anything.

Thanx but it confuses me a little. On another machine I re-installed the O/S using a disk sent to me by Microsoft Support, and the process didn’t offer an opportunity to reformat the HDD. It was W-7 Pro and I didn’t have the original O/S disk having bought the PC on ebay.

On the 2nd machine I’ll use the original W-7 Home Premium disk, and hopefully this process will offer me the opportunity to reformat the HDD.
-Thanx again

Is this a desktop or laptop?? Some have a restore partition that you can use to restore to the original factory state.

Both my machines are desktops, an HP and a IBM Levonos.

Lenovo and hp may have restore partition. Here is link to lenovo.
You check and see if recovery partition on hard drive on both or you can order recovery disks from hp or lenovo

Usually, name-brand machines with one of these handy-dandy secret Recovery-ReInstall Partitions have a Control Panel applet for “Recovery” or “Windows Recovery”, or perhaps “Build Recovery Discs”.

You can open up those applets and see what happens - you’ll have several explanation and introductory screens before you get to the “Now insert blank DVD/CD” option.

Then there’s Option 2…

Some of them don’t need to build discs - they will maintain that one hidden partition and use it ‘as a disc’ to wipe out (reformat) your main Windows partition and reinstall everything as it appeared on Day One from the store.

On the Dell’s, Toshiba’s, HPs and Lenovo’s I’ve seen, some require Discs To Be Burned and some do not. Inconsistency is their only consistent promise! But under both methods, I can start the applet and am given a few explanation screens to describe what’s about to happen.

The option to format the drive is “hidden” in “Advanced drive options” (or “advanced options” on some versions of the installer.)

I personally recommend formatting the drive as a separate operation on another computer AFTER you use the installer to delete the current partition as well as the little 100mb “system reserved partition”

This partition should be around 110gb (Anything larger is wasted)

Then when running the installer from the ROM disc install the OS in that partition
and the windows installer will not create that additional partition but instead include the “system reserved” within the OS partition.

The advantage to doing this is it makes it far easier to migrate to another Drive using an “image” of the system. normally a system image that is separate from that 100mb “System reserved” partition will not be bootable after mounting the image to another drive until you again run the windows installer disc and choose the “repair windows” option and run a “Startup repair”

Basically what I’m saying is that not allowing the installer to create the partition itself and thus not making that 100mb system reserved partition will make it far easier for you to migrate to an SSD at some later date.

Another thing to watch for is to look inside your bios settings (in setup) and see what mode your ATA controller is set to, if you have the option if setting it to AHCI mode before reinstalling windows, do so…