HD refuses to format

Discussion in 'Computer Support' started by Murgi, Feb 15, 2004.

  1. Murgi

    Murgi Guest

    I have two older IDE hard drives (10 GB) which I want to use for backup
    purposes. However, I have problems to get them ready...
    They are connected via an external USB HD case.

    Disk 1 (one partition):
    Is recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon brings up the message: "The
    disk drive F is not formatted; Format Yes/No"
    [Other parameters]
    Capacity: unknown
    File system: FAT
    Default Allocation Size
    [] Quick Format: If I use this function, it says first:
    "Formatting will erase all data..." OK
    Then the following message comes up: "Windows was unable to complete this
    format."
    Normal format function: same as with Quick Format

    Disk 2 (two partitions):
    Both partitions are recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon for the
    first partition brings up the message: "The disk drive F is not formatted;
    Format Yes/No"
    If I try to format, it says again "Windows was unable to complete this
    format."
    Clicking on the icon of 2nd partition is normal and shows its contents.

    Does this indicate some more serious problems with the HDs?
    If not, how to get both HD formatted again? One HD was originally formatted
    with the NTFS file system, the other one is FAT (16 or 32; doesn't indicate
    any number).
    By the way, I use Windows XP Pro.
    Murgi, Feb 15, 2004
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. Murgi

    ñKs Guest

    Windows cant format an active partition

    "Murgi" <-net.ne.jp> wrote in message
    news:...
    > I have two older IDE hard drives (10 GB) which I want to use for backup
    > purposes. However, I have problems to get them ready...
    > They are connected via an external USB HD case.
    >
    > Disk 1 (one partition):
    > Is recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon brings up the message:

    "The
    > disk drive F is not formatted; Format Yes/No"
    > [Other parameters]
    > Capacity: unknown
    > File system: FAT
    > Default Allocation Size
    > [] Quick Format: If I use this function, it says first:
    > "Formatting will erase all data..." OK
    > Then the following message comes up: "Windows was unable to complete this
    > format."
    > Normal format function: same as with Quick Format
    >
    > Disk 2 (two partitions):
    > Both partitions are recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon for the
    > first partition brings up the message: "The disk drive F is not formatted;
    > Format Yes/No"
    > If I try to format, it says again "Windows was unable to complete this
    > format."
    > Clicking on the icon of 2nd partition is normal and shows its contents.
    >
    > Does this indicate some more serious problems with the HDs?
    > If not, how to get both HD formatted again? One HD was originally

    formatted
    > with the NTFS file system, the other one is FAT (16 or 32; doesn't

    indicate
    > any number).
    > By the way, I use Windows XP Pro.
    >
    >
    ñKs, Feb 15, 2004
    #2
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  3. Murgi

    ñKs Guest

    Ever hear of a boot floppy?
    Fdisk?

    "Murgi" <-net.ne.jp> wrote in message
    news:...
    > I have two older IDE hard drives (10 GB) which I want to use for backup
    > purposes. However, I have problems to get them ready...
    > They are connected via an external USB HD case.
    >
    > Disk 1 (one partition):
    > Is recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon brings up the message:

    "The
    > disk drive F is not formatted; Format Yes/No"
    > [Other parameters]
    > Capacity: unknown
    > File system: FAT
    > Default Allocation Size
    > [] Quick Format: If I use this function, it says first:
    > "Formatting will erase all data..." OK
    > Then the following message comes up: "Windows was unable to complete this
    > format."
    > Normal format function: same as with Quick Format
    >
    > Disk 2 (two partitions):
    > Both partitions are recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon for the
    > first partition brings up the message: "The disk drive F is not formatted;
    > Format Yes/No"
    > If I try to format, it says again "Windows was unable to complete this
    > format."
    > Clicking on the icon of 2nd partition is normal and shows its contents.
    >
    > Does this indicate some more serious problems with the HDs?
    > If not, how to get both HD formatted again? One HD was originally

    formatted
    > with the NTFS file system, the other one is FAT (16 or 32; doesn't

    indicate
    > any number).
    > By the way, I use Windows XP Pro.
    >
    >
    ñKs, Feb 15, 2004
    #3
  4. Murgi

    Murgi Guest

    > Windows cant format an active partition


    Hmmm.... I thought I did it before, but then it can't have been.
    Can I do it at least UNDER Windows by using something like Partition Magic,
    or do I need to drop to DOS and use the old-fashioned method?
    Murgi, Feb 15, 2004
    #4
  5. Murgi

    Murgi Guest

    > Ever hear of a boot floppy?
    > Fdisk?


    Of course...:)
    But WOW.... both answers arrived less than 30 seconds after posting here in
    Tokyo!
    Thanks for pointing out the problem.

    Murgi
    Murgi, Feb 15, 2004
    #5
  6. Murgi

    ErmYouKnow Guest

    Windows CAN format an active partition.
    "ñKs" <newkillerstar26@ hotNOTSOHTmail.com> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Windows cant format an active partition
    >
    > "Murgi" <-net.ne.jp> wrote in message
    > news:...
    > > I have two older IDE hard drives (10 GB) which I want to use for backup
    > > purposes. However, I have problems to get them ready...
    > > They are connected via an external USB HD case.
    > >
    > > Disk 1 (one partition):
    > > Is recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon brings up the message:

    > "The
    > > disk drive F is not formatted; Format Yes/No"
    > > [Other parameters]
    > > Capacity: unknown
    > > File system: FAT
    > > Default Allocation Size
    > > [] Quick Format: If I use this function, it says first:
    > > "Formatting will erase all data..." OK
    > > Then the following message comes up: "Windows was unable to complete

    this
    > > format."
    > > Normal format function: same as with Quick Format
    > >
    > > Disk 2 (two partitions):
    > > Both partitions are recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon for the
    > > first partition brings up the message: "The disk drive F is not

    formatted;
    > > Format Yes/No"
    > > If I try to format, it says again "Windows was unable to complete this
    > > format."
    > > Clicking on the icon of 2nd partition is normal and shows its contents.
    > >
    > > Does this indicate some more serious problems with the HDs?
    > > If not, how to get both HD formatted again? One HD was originally

    > formatted
    > > with the NTFS file system, the other one is FAT (16 or 32; doesn't

    > indicate
    > > any number).
    > > By the way, I use Windows XP Pro.
    > >
    > >

    >
    >
    ErmYouKnow, Feb 15, 2004
    #6
  7. Murgi

    RDS Guest

    "Murgi" <-net.ne.jp> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Windows cant format an active partition



    Hmmm.... I thought I did it before, but then it can't have been.
    Can I do it at least UNDER Windows by using something like Partition Magic,
    or do I need to drop to DOS and use the old-fashioned method?



    It can be done. I have formatted many Active partitions in Windows 2000
    Professional and Server. All of the ones I formatted have been internal
    drives. I have never tried to format one connected USB though. I really
    don't know of a difference unless they have the boot records on them. Then
    Windows will not format it.

    The big difference between Quick Format and a regular format other than
    speed is QF does not check for bad sectors. Unless it is a very large HDD I
    would recommend a regular format.

    You may run into a problem trying to format an HDD with a boot disk if your
    computer does not have a BIOS setting enabling USB at DOS.

    Roger
    RDS, Feb 15, 2004
    #7
  8. Murgi

    ñKs Guest

    Not the active C partition...

    "ErmYouKnow" <> wrote in message
    news:c0mpqd$eru$...
    > Windows CAN format an active partition.
    > "ñKs" <newkillerstar26@ hotNOTSOHTmail.com> wrote in message
    > news:...
    > > Windows cant format an active partition
    > >
    > > "Murgi" <-net.ne.jp> wrote in message
    > > news:...
    > > > I have two older IDE hard drives (10 GB) which I want to use for

    backup
    > > > purposes. However, I have problems to get them ready...
    > > > They are connected via an external USB HD case.
    > > >
    > > > Disk 1 (one partition):
    > > > Is recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon brings up the message:

    > > "The
    > > > disk drive F is not formatted; Format Yes/No"
    > > > [Other parameters]
    > > > Capacity: unknown
    > > > File system: FAT
    > > > Default Allocation Size
    > > > [] Quick Format: If I use this function, it says first:
    > > > "Formatting will erase all data..." OK
    > > > Then the following message comes up: "Windows was unable to complete

    > this
    > > > format."
    > > > Normal format function: same as with Quick Format
    > > >
    > > > Disk 2 (two partitions):
    > > > Both partitions are recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon for

    the
    > > > first partition brings up the message: "The disk drive F is not

    > formatted;
    > > > Format Yes/No"
    > > > If I try to format, it says again "Windows was unable to complete this
    > > > format."
    > > > Clicking on the icon of 2nd partition is normal and shows its

    contents.
    > > >
    > > > Does this indicate some more serious problems with the HDs?
    > > > If not, how to get both HD formatted again? One HD was originally

    > > formatted
    > > > with the NTFS file system, the other one is FAT (16 or 32; doesn't

    > > indicate
    > > > any number).
    > > > By the way, I use Windows XP Pro.
    > > >
    > > >

    > >
    > >

    >
    >
    ñKs, Feb 15, 2004
    #8
  9. Murgi

    Murgi Guest

    "ñKs" <newkillerstar26@ hotNOTSOHTmail.com> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Not the active C partition...



    Aaaah... that's understandable. But I mentioned that the HD was connected
    via USB...
    However, I have done these tasks several times in the past.
    Murgi, Feb 15, 2004
    #9
  10. Murgi

    TehGhodTrole Guest

    Patrick wrote:
    > Murgi wrote:
    >>> Ever hear of a boot floppy?
    >>> Fdisk?

    >>
    >> Of course...:)
    >> But WOW.... both answers arrived less than 30 seconds after posting
    >> here in Tokyo!
    >> Thanks for pointing out the problem.
    >>
    >> Murgi

    >
    > Is it possible that 'System Restore' (turn off on drive) or the
    > 'Recycle Bin' (clear the bin) is preventing the format.


    BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!


    --
    Your Free Insult: Thou glairing, bezzling, infectious french-fried potato suspecting dunce.
    TehGhodTrole, Feb 15, 2004
    #10
  11. Murgi

    Patrick Guest

    Murgi wrote:
    >> Ever hear of a boot floppy?
    >> Fdisk?

    >
    > Of course...:)
    > But WOW.... both answers arrived less than 30 seconds after posting
    > here in Tokyo!
    > Thanks for pointing out the problem.
    >
    > Murgi


    Is it possible that 'System Restore' (turn off on drive) or the 'Recycle
    Bin' (clear the bin) is preventing the format.
    Patrick, Feb 15, 2004
    #11
  12. Murgi

    Murgi Guest

    Hard disk formatting problem solved!!!

    Well, everything worked out fine by selecting "Disk Management",
    right-clicking the partition to be formatted, then selecting "Format" from
    the popup window.
    Although Windows reported an error in one case, it was all OK. Formatting an
    internal or an external USB HD makes no difference.

    Still, I wonder why the formatting function in My Computer fails
    (right-clicking on the partition in question, and then choosing Format).
    Anyway, this is a strange quirk in Windows XP methinks.
    Murgi, Feb 16, 2004
    #12
  13. Murgi

    RDS Guest

    When you are in My Computer and click on that drive you are using that drive
    therefore, you can not format a drive in use by Windows. When you are in
    Disk Management it is a different story!


    "Murgi" <-net.ne.jp> wrote in message
    news:...
    Hard disk formatting problem solved!!!

    Well, everything worked out fine by selecting "Disk Management",
    right-clicking the partition to be formatted, then selecting "Format" from
    the popup window.
    Although Windows reported an error in one case, it was all OK. Formatting an
    internal or an external USB HD makes no difference.

    Still, I wonder why the formatting function in My Computer fails
    (right-clicking on the partition in question, and then choosing Format).
    Anyway, this is a strange quirk in Windows XP methinks.
    RDS, Feb 16, 2004
    #13
  14. FDISK

    Murgi wrote:
    > I have two older IDE hard drives (10 GB) which I want to use for backup
    > purposes. However, I have problems to get them ready...
    > They are connected via an external USB HD case.
    >
    > Disk 1 (one partition):
    > Is recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon brings up the message: "The
    > disk drive F is not formatted; Format Yes/No"
    > [Other parameters]
    > Capacity: unknown
    > File system: FAT
    > Default Allocation Size
    > [] Quick Format: If I use this function, it says first:
    > "Formatting will erase all data..." OK
    > Then the following message comes up: "Windows was unable to complete this
    > format."
    > Normal format function: same as with Quick Format
    >
    > Disk 2 (two partitions):
    > Both partitions are recognized in My Computer. Clicking the icon for the
    > first partition brings up the message: "The disk drive F is not formatted;
    > Format Yes/No"
    > If I try to format, it says again "Windows was unable to complete this
    > format."
    > Clicking on the icon of 2nd partition is normal and shows its contents.
    >
    > Does this indicate some more serious problems with the HDs?
    > If not, how to get both HD formatted again? One HD was originally formatted
    > with the NTFS file system, the other one is FAT (16 or 32; doesn't indicate
    > any number).
    > By the way, I use Windows XP Pro.
    >
    >
    news.charter.net, Feb 16, 2004
    #14
  15. Murgi

    Murgi Guest

    "RDS" <> wrote in message
    news:8GVXb.6423$...
    > When you are in My Computer and click on that drive you are using that

    drive
    > therefore, you can not format a drive in use by Windows. When you are in
    > Disk Management it is a different story!




    I understand if I wanted to format drive C:>, the drive where my OS resides.
    But this was a different drive letter on another external hard drive...
    Oh well, from now on I'll stick to Disk Management anyway.
    Murgi, Feb 16, 2004
    #15
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