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Re-loading XP - Windows unable to format drive


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#1
rustyagain

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Morning all
Computer had been loaded with a OEM edition of XP Media Edition with no disks supplied.
Problems started when primary drive kept changing from DMA to OCP, this was followed by windows delay rewrite cutting in for numerous files (temp / prefetch etc).Further loading of windows gave different missing files until everything ground to a halt.
Decided to get drastic and do a complete reload of standard Windows XP. This disk had been purchased and used on a previous machine, as I understand it the legal side is I can reuse this XP Disk if the previous computer and XP download has been destroyed.
THE PROBLEM – Inserted disk and started the down load, Deleted the old part ions and ended up with one 160 GB part ions. Windows then requested to format the disk and I chose the full format. After 4 hours windows then stated it was unable to format the hard drive - tried a quick format and got the same result

I have always wondered if the hard drive was “suspect” due to the occasional clunking noises and now wonder if I have to get a new hard drive.

All and any help appreciated
Rgds rusty
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#2
Kelvin

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It most probably is. You'll probably need to try to get your important files off the hard drive and reinstall the XP onto a new one.

~Kelvin
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#3
Adrenalin

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Yip, what Kelvin said.

That 'clunking' noise is probably the disk on it's way out.

You could put in a second disk, put windows on that, and then try to save any data you had on the old disk whilst it is still half working.

Edited by Adrenalin, 26 December 2007 - 08:02 AM.

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#4
rustyagain

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Thanks guys for the above replies (dismal though they are) – As I have already removed the part ions and spent 4 hours trying to reformat I doubt if any information is worth saving –
Any recommendations on the next drive to buy ? – existing drive is a 160gb SATA 2 with spin speed 7200. Don’t know what the cache is - Any experience good or bad of different makes would be appreciated as the market seams quite large. Also does more cache help.
Rgds rusty
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#5
Kelvin

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I'm sorry the replies are dismal, but they are straightforward - I don't think there's much we can do about hardware failing.

I'd go for either Seagate or Western Digital (WD) as they are popular brands, and their quality doesn't lack a bit either. While getting a HD, just look for the above specs: SATA, 7200RPM, and the cache size is up to you (usually normal HD's have 2MB). Here's a bit on caches.

Hard disk cache's are an important element of a computer system whose primary aim is to increase overall system performance by saving data in faster banks of RAM.

Hard drives have a cache built in to hold data that is being written to or read from the hard disk. The purpose of doing so tries to reduce the number of occasions in which data has to be physically written and read from the hard disk platter. By retaining recent data within the cache performance is increased as this memory is much faster and saves time on repeat recalls.

The other primary function of a cache is to try to match speeds between devices so that the faster device is not held up, or isn't held up as much. In the case of a printer the cache stores data sent to the printer from the system where it is held until the printer is able to print it off. This enables the system to continue other tasks whilst the printers cache holds onto the information.

Caches exist also in the computers operating system where a specified amount of RAM is set aside for storing repeatedly used data to again reduced the amount that has to be written on to the hard drive. Users can adjust their system cache but must make sure that they do not allow too much RAM to be used in this manor and hence cause less RAM to be available for programs which in turn have to use hard disk memory thus defeating the intent.


I hope it helps.

~Kelvin
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