Is boot and nuke ok for wiping

heatherhh9

Member
Hi I am new to this forum and would like to know if boot and nuke is ok. I want to wipe my hard drive before reinstalling windows vista. The reason being that i have installed and uninstalled many programs over the last couple of years and feel it is now time to have a fresh start. And i will only be loading the programs i will definitely be using. any advice on this would be great. I have wiped and formatted a drive before but never done a partition mainly as i dont know how to do the numbers for it. I want to learn how to do all of this myself as i plan on building my own computer and want to get as much information and experience as i can before undertaking that project.
Thank you in advance for any help.

Heather.
 

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osholt

Magister mundi sum!
Vista Guru
Hi heather and welcome to the forums :party:.

If you want to format your hard drive before a reinstall why not do during your Vista installation?

When you are given the list of drives/partitions to install the OS onto just pick the appropriate partition and format it using the button below the table.

This is the easiest way to format a drive for a reinstall.

Remember when reinstalling to have all your data backed up.

In answer to your question: as long as all your important stuff's backed up it's safe to format.

You may consider running a disk check before your reformat but it isn't strictly neccesairy. (http://www.vistax64.com/tutorials/67612-check-disk-chkdsk.html)

If you have questions or need help just ask.

Oli
 

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heatherhh9

Member
Hi Oli the reason im asking about the boot and nuke is when iv'e formatted and reinstalled my husbands xp system before, if you click on explore you can still find all the old files and programs and i don't want that to happen with my laptop, i want to be sure that it is completely clean with no files left behind, im thinking of wiping both C and D drives and making new partitions.

i want to do this properly and learn the right way to get it done that's why I'm here asking before i do any thing. I have saved all of my files that i want. Is there any thing i need to save for the system files drivers or any thing like that.

Thank you for your answer i will run the disk check to be sure that every thing is ok.

Heather.
 

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ilikefree

Vista Guru
Gold Member
Don't know if you need it but there is a tool that will back up your activation key and certificate its called ABR
 

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    Only ever used a laptop.
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osholt

Magister mundi sum!
Vista Guru
Hi Oli the reason im asking about the boot and nuke is when iv'e formatted and reinstalled my husbands xp system before, if you click on explore you can still find all the old files and programs and i don't want that to happen with my laptop, i want to be sure that it is completely clean with no files left behind, im thinking of wiping both C and D drives and making new partitions.

i want to do this properly and learn the right way to get it done that's why I'm here asking before i do any thing. I have saved all of my files that i want. Is there any thing i need to save for the system files drivers or any thing like that.

Thank you for your answer i will run the disk check to be sure that every thing is ok.

Heather.
The only thing extra you need is the activation key which is probably on your machine on a sticker or on the upgrade box.

When you installed it previously you didn't format the HDD so that's why all the files remained.

I reallyy recomend you format during the installation rather than using a third party utility.

There really isn't that much to learn about formatting disks other than it just removes all the data from it.

Oli
 

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heatherhh9

Member
I have my activation key on the box of the windows vista cd i bought. so no worries on that.
what is the certificate that i should back up??? ive never heard of this before.

Ok i will take your advice and format during installation, though i have to admit im a little scared that im going to end up having all those files still on the laptop and then end up doing it again.

Thank you for your advice. Can i ask please what is a good partition size for me to use when formatting i have never done the partition before and so dont know what numbers to put for it. i would like to have D drive larger than C so that i can keep just the system files on C and put all my programs and other things on D. Is this ok to do or will it cause problems ??? i have 100gb on C drive and 48.8 on D drive at the moment.
 

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osholt

Magister mundi sum!
Vista Guru
I have my activation key on the box of the windows vista cd i bought. so no worries on that.
what is the certificate that i should back up??? ive never heard of this before.

Ok i will take your advice and format during installation, though i have to admit im a little scared that im going to end up having all those files still on the laptop and then end up doing it again.

Thank you for your advice. Can i ask please what is a good partition size for me to use when formatting i have never done the partition before and so dont know what numbers to put for it. i would like to have D drive larger than C so that i can keep just the system files on C and put all my programs and other things on D. Is this ok to do or will it cause problems ??? i have 100gb on C drive and 48.8 on D drive at the moment.
I don't know, he may be referring to an SSL certificate (if you don't know what that is don't worry) or a certificate that holds you passwords for various things.

You don't need it backed up anyhow.

You can have your disk partitioned like that but I'm not sure it's easy to do in the Windows Installation DVD, it's really only suited for formatting partitions and not resizing etc.

If you partition your D drive to be larger than your C drive you will notice that your computer boots faster but your programs will likely run slower and many programs don't like being installed off of the C drive due to file locations etc.

I wouldn't advise fiddling with partitions on laptops anyway because if you have to format your drive you may lose your recovery partition (if your computer has one) which houses all your a backup of your PC as when it came out of the factory which can be very useful.

The reason your hard drive has a 100GB, 50GB partition map is because the 100GB is designed to handle system files and programs whereas the D drive is designed to hold data, backups and media.

If you are adamant on making new partitions make sure your PC doesn't have a recovery partition and that you have another computer available to get the disk utility app you decide to use off incase something goes disastrously wrong (it's only happened to me once out of about 100 installsI've done over the last several years) which it shouldn't.

Oli
 

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heatherhh9

Member
Well if you think its not advisable to change the sizes of the partitions then i will leave them as they are. I did have recovery files on my D drive but after having a new motherboard put in my the manufactures, i was having problems getting it to connect, so i took it to the shop and he said i needed to format, so i allowed him to do it, only im now wishing i hadnt as for some strange reason he removed my recovery files as well as every thing else and he is the person that put the partition as it is now. I have tried to get a recovery DVD for it but, where i am it is very expensive and i cant afford to pay the amount they are asking, which is $93 compared to only $16 if bought in the US. This is the reason i now want to learn how to do things for myself. I have a friend that told me about this forum and im glad she did, you are very helpful here and im sure i will learn lots here. Once again thank you for your help.

Heather.
 

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osholt

Magister mundi sum!
Vista Guru
No problem and you're welcome, if you have any more questions don't feel afraid to ask.

Oh and who is this friend who recommended the forum, are they a member or just long time looker? If you haven't already check out our tutorial section.

Oli
 

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  • Manufacturer/Model
    Apple MacBook, 5,1
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    Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4Ghz
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    4GB DDR3
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    Nvidia 9400m
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    13.3" Apple MacBook LCD Screen + 22" HannsG DVI LCD + 21.5" Samsung USB Lapfit Monitor LD220
    Screen Resolution
    1280x800 + 1920x1080 + 1920x1080
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    SATA Internal 2.5" 500GB (305GB HFS+, 195GB NTFS)
    External USB 3.5" 1TB (HFS+)
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    Aluminium Unibody
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    Apple Magic Mouse
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heatherhh9

Member
Im sure i will have lots of questions in the months to come, as i eventually plan on building my own computer (lots of learning to do first though lol)
Im not sure if you will know who the friend is or not, her email profile is LAdy, i have always called her Zo. i dont know if this will help or not lolol.

Heather
 

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osholt

Magister mundi sum!
Vista Guru
That doesn't ring any bells but I'm sure I'll find out in time.

If you're looking to build your own PC there's not much to actually learn before hand (other than what all the components do and how they fit together, which is assumed knowledge), while you're doing it you'll pick up things as you go along like how temperamental hardware is and the joy that is SATA :p (or SATA II or SATA III now, or if you want to go old school PATA or IDE ;)). If you don't know what any of that means now you'll soon learn while building your PC.

Oli
 

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System One

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    Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4Ghz
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    Nvidia 9400m
    Monitor(s) Displays
    13.3" Apple MacBook LCD Screen + 22" HannsG DVI LCD + 21.5" Samsung USB Lapfit Monitor LD220
    Screen Resolution
    1280x800 + 1920x1080 + 1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    SATA Internal 2.5" 500GB (305GB HFS+, 195GB NTFS)
    External USB 3.5" 1TB (HFS+)
    Case
    Aluminium Unibody
    Mouse
    Apple Magic Mouse
    Keyboard
    Apple Late 2009 Wireless Keyboard (US)
    Internet Speed
    6.33Mb/s up. 0.36Mb/s down.
    Other Info
    Harman Kardon Soundsticks II Speakers

ilikefree

Vista Guru
Gold Member

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System One

  • Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo Thinkpad T400
    CPU
    Intel Mobile Core 2 Duo P8700 @ 2.53GHz
    Motherboard
    LENOVO 64734VM
    Memory
    2.00GB Single-Channel DDR3 @ 531MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    Intel Mobile Intel 4 Series Express Chipset Family
    Sound Card
    Conexant 20561 SmartAudio HD
    Monitor(s) Displays
    15 inch
    Screen Resolution
    1280 x 800
    Hard Drives
    1x 180GB Intel 530 series SSD
    1 x 120GB Hitachi 5400rmp
    1 x 650GB Western Digital Elements 5400rpm
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    Internet Speed
    Medium for New Zealand
    Other Info
    Weakest part of my computer is the graphics chipset.
    Only ever used a laptop.
    Also use USB Freeview TV Card
    Lenovo Docking Station
    External Speakers
    Other bits a pieces as needed

niemiro

Banned
Hello Heather,

Have you already reformatted? Do you have any encripted data? If you do, this is the certificate you need to backup. We are very sorry that this was not mentioned thus far. In terms of having your programs on another drive, in theory it does work, but make sure to leave a bit of space, as some programs will only install onto the C:\ drive, and believe me, it is more fiddly than anyone is led to believe. :) One does end up with more than the occasional problem, and it is annoying having to keep changing the install directory. If you have not already done it, I can answer anymore questions you have, and if you have any encryptd files, you NEED to backup the certificates first.

Not that you need this now, and ask questions when you are ready, here is a good, basic guide to building a new computer from scratch: How to Build Your Own Computer

Good luck, and if you reformat, everything is gone, if you clean install, most files are moved to C:\Windows.Old, and if you repair install, just the Windows directory is overwritten, nothing else. Sorry for any confusion caused.

Richard

P.S. You should be able to make your own install CD from scratch with SP2, all updates thus far, and only at the cost of one DVD and about 6 hours. If you want any more information, just ask.

I think changing the partition sizes should be fine, just get them right, as it is quite difficult (but not impossible) to change them after install.
 

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System One

  • Manufacturer/Model
    Dell XPS 420
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    Intel Core 2 Quad Q9300 2.50GHz
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    Stock Dell 0TP406
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    4 gb (DDR2 800) 400MHz
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    ATI Radeon HD 3870 (512 MBytes)
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    1 x 640Gb (SATA 300)
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    1 x 1Tb (SATA 600)
    Western Digital: Caviar Black, SATA 6GB/S, 64Mb cache, 8ms
    Western Digital: WDC WD1002FAEX-00Z3A0 ATA Device
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heatherhh9

Member
Richard,
Thank you for answering on this, No i don't have any encrypted files on my laptop, so I guess i dont need to worry about that.

No i haven't reformatted yet, like i said i want to make sure i have all the information right first, the last time i reinstalled a system was my husbands and i now see why we still had all the files as you say in windows old. as i only did a clean install, at that time i was still very new to computers and was hoping it would go right :o i now know enough to know that's not how you do things lol.

I have installed programs on to D drive of my desktop and not had any problems with it. The pc is running well and nothing freezes or shuts down for no reason. But im thinking maybe ill just do things the conventional way on the laptop.

I would like to know how to make an install cd, i do have SP2. What sort of DVD do i need to get, i know there are a couple of different types but not sure which i would need for this. Also is this some thing that can be done on an external drive, as i have one that has 250gbs so i would say plenty of space if it can be done like that. The reason i ask this is because i am no good at keeping cd's safe and always lose them or one of my kids pinch them and put music on them lol

When the man i took my laptop to, to format it installed every thing again, he put an illegal version of ms office on here, where i had the legal version before that. so i wont be adding office when i format i cant afford to buy it. Is there a free version of word i can install as i use it to write lessons on??

Thank you for the link on how to build your own computer any and all information is welcome.

Heather.
 

My Computer

niemiro

Banned
Hello,

You can safely ignore the encrypted files and the certificate in that case. In terms of formatting, once you have backed up your data, just boot into your Windows DVD, or however you are going to install Windows. Then on the screen where you choose what hard disk drive/partition to install onto, in that screen are the tools for reformatting. Using this method will make sure all settings are exactly as Windows wants, so I would recommend this over any programs (unless you have very private data that needs wiping 24 times) and it is much simpler.

In terms of using the D:\ drive, it will not cause problems when you get used to it, it is just people not knowing what they are committing to.

In terms of Office, do you have any DVDs, or product keys for your old copy. Just on the off chance, are you a student, as students can get discounts up to 96% on Microsoft Office, bringing it down to just the cost of the DVD? Otherwise, there is something called Open Office, which is Open Souce Software. It will look slightly different to Office, but you will soon get used to it, and it is completely free, with all features of Office. If you have any questions, do not be afraid to ask: OpenOffice.org - The Free and Open Productivity Suite

In terms of DVDs, here is all the different versions so you understand in general:

You get a normal CD and DVD. DVDs are bigger than CDs. A typical CD stores 700mb of data, a DVD 4.7GB (4700MB) All figures are approximations.

Both CD and DVD have:

R: Read. You can put data on once, and then you can only read from it, you cannot ever erase it. If you format it, the CD/DVD will look empty, but will have full capacity - what data was on it. This means a 700mb CD with 100mb of data on it would be formatted to am empty 600mb disk.

RW: Read/Write. More modern, and now not really any difference in price. Can read and write more than once, can delete data, can format to full capacity, just like a USB memory stick.

CD and DVD also have duel layer to double capacity. You do not want or need these.

There is now BlueRay on the scene. Expensive and huge capacity, needs special reader. You do nopt want one of these, you will not be able to use it.

Do not go for any other strange DVD, such as the old DVD-RAM, it is NOT what you want.

Ignore + and -, there is effectively no difference now.

Suitable DVDs: DVD-R, DVD+R, DVD-R/W, DVD+R/W

N.B: Sometimes RW is without forward slash. CDs will be too small to hold an Operating System.

In terms of making a DVD/Hard Disk Partition, I will go through this after you are back on your feet after the reformat. Making a partition will be very slightly harder, though still very possible, and sometimes a computer manufacterer will provide a tool to make a DVD/Partition. Which manufacterer makes your computer?

Thanks!

Richard
 

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System One

  • Manufacturer/Model
    Dell XPS 420
    CPU
    Intel Core 2 Quad Q9300 2.50GHz
    Motherboard
    Stock Dell 0TP406
    Memory
    4 gb (DDR2 800) 400MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    ATI Radeon HD 3870 (512 MBytes)
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    1 x Dell 2007FP and 1 x (old) Sonic flat screen
    Screen Resolution
    1600 x 1200 and 1280 x 1204
    Hard Drives
    1 x 640Gb (SATA 300)
    Western Digital: WDC WD6400AAKS-75A7B0

    1 x 1Tb (SATA 600)
    Western Digital: Caviar Black, SATA 6GB/S, 64Mb cache, 8ms
    Western Digital: WDC WD1002FAEX-00Z3A0 ATA Device
    PSU
    Stock PSU - 375W
    Case
    Dell XPS 420
    Cooling
    Stock Fan
    Mouse
    Advent Optical ADE-WG01 (colour change light up)
    Keyboard
    Dell Bluetooth
    Internet Speed
    120 kb/s
    Other Info
    ASUS USB 3.0 5Gbps/SATA 6Gbps - PCI-Express Combo Controller Card (U3S6)

heatherhh9

Member
LOL no i don't have any very private data, i just wanted to make sure that i would be deleting every thing when formatting and if windows does that then that's how ill do it. Its only because of the way i got all of the files left on my husbands pc when i did the clean install there that i wanted to know about another program. I guess ill be formatting his pc again soon only doing it right this time lol.

No im afraid i don't have any DVD or anything else from when i bought the laptop, everything was on D drive in the recovery files, and as i said before they got wiped off when i took it to a shop to format it. so i lost all of that. Not a student either though i could get my daughter to buy it for me she is a student, that might be some thing to think about.
Thank you for the link for open office, it sounds like a good choice should i not be able to get my daughter to get ms office for me.


Wow so basically go to the shop and ask for a DVD and thats it lol

My laptop is Hp i bought it new from the shop about 5 years ago. Since then it has had a new motherboard as one my children split water over it and it burnt out.

I think i will format this weekend, that being thursday and friday for me. so i hope to be back up and running by saturday. then i will come back here before installing any thing at all (only antivirus protection) so you can help me with backing up my files before i add any programs.

Thank you so much for all your help and information.

Heather.
 

My Computer

niemiro

Banned
Hello,

Do you have your files backed up, or is that what you needed help with. I am sorry, I got it wrong, it is only up to 91% Yes, you could prove your eligibility through your daughter, so no problems there. See these websites:

However, it may be that you don't want to pay anything at all (ie Open Office) As you can see, they are selling Office 2007, with free download of Office 2010 when it comes out (soon).

The DVD we need is just the common or garden DVD, nothing special, though if you do it via a partition, then there is no need for a DVD at all.

Richard
 

My Computer

System One

  • Manufacturer/Model
    Dell XPS 420
    CPU
    Intel Core 2 Quad Q9300 2.50GHz
    Motherboard
    Stock Dell 0TP406
    Memory
    4 gb (DDR2 800) 400MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    ATI Radeon HD 3870 (512 MBytes)
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    1 x Dell 2007FP and 1 x (old) Sonic flat screen
    Screen Resolution
    1600 x 1200 and 1280 x 1204
    Hard Drives
    1 x 640Gb (SATA 300)
    Western Digital: WDC WD6400AAKS-75A7B0

    1 x 1Tb (SATA 600)
    Western Digital: Caviar Black, SATA 6GB/S, 64Mb cache, 8ms
    Western Digital: WDC WD1002FAEX-00Z3A0 ATA Device
    PSU
    Stock PSU - 375W
    Case
    Dell XPS 420
    Cooling
    Stock Fan
    Mouse
    Advent Optical ADE-WG01 (colour change light up)
    Keyboard
    Dell Bluetooth
    Internet Speed
    120 kb/s
    Other Info
    ASUS USB 3.0 5Gbps/SATA 6Gbps - PCI-Express Combo Controller Card (U3S6)

heatherhh9

Member
Hi Richard,

im a little upset right now, ive just tried to start the format for the laptop, but first windows wouldnt let me boot from the cd with the key i have (as it is the same key already installed) i was told to open the install from the current installation of windows. so i exited the installer and restarted windows then went to the cd and opened the file started the installer from there and when it got to the part where it asks which drive to install it on there was nothing to let me choose format, i clicked on C to choose it and clicked next, thats when i got a message saying that as there was already an installation of windows they would be put in a folder called windows old as you said. I found nothing to let me format the drive first. So im wondering how i am going to format it if the copy i have wont let me do that.

I sure hope you can help with this.

Heather.
 

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niemiro

Banned
Hello Heather,

You need to install by booting from the DVD at startup. Can you confirm that when you did this, you did not manage to get to the screen where you could choose the disk to install onto? There should not be any reason for windows to block this, which is why I am slightly confused. Thanks!

Richard
 

My Computer

System One

  • Manufacturer/Model
    Dell XPS 420
    CPU
    Intel Core 2 Quad Q9300 2.50GHz
    Motherboard
    Stock Dell 0TP406
    Memory
    4 gb (DDR2 800) 400MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    ATI Radeon HD 3870 (512 MBytes)
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    1 x Dell 2007FP and 1 x (old) Sonic flat screen
    Screen Resolution
    1600 x 1200 and 1280 x 1204
    Hard Drives
    1 x 640Gb (SATA 300)
    Western Digital: WDC WD6400AAKS-75A7B0

    1 x 1Tb (SATA 600)
    Western Digital: Caviar Black, SATA 6GB/S, 64Mb cache, 8ms
    Western Digital: WDC WD1002FAEX-00Z3A0 ATA Device
    PSU
    Stock PSU - 375W
    Case
    Dell XPS 420
    Cooling
    Stock Fan
    Mouse
    Advent Optical ADE-WG01 (colour change light up)
    Keyboard
    Dell Bluetooth
    Internet Speed
    120 kb/s
    Other Info
    ASUS USB 3.0 5Gbps/SATA 6Gbps - PCI-Express Combo Controller Card (U3S6)

heatherhh9

Member
Hi Richard,
yes i can confirm that i did not get to the screen to choose which drive to install to, when i booted from the cd,
i chose install now, which took me to a screen asking for the key, i put the key that came with my cd which is also the key i have activated on the laptop now, when i clicked on next, i got the message that i could not install using the key i had entered and i needed to reboot and install from within the windows installation i already have if i wanted to use the key i put in. So i rebooted and tried that, only to be told i could only do a clean install and all files and folders would be moved to windows old. which is exactly what i didnt want.

Heather.
 
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