How can I format the C drive? (OS is not on C: drive anymore but...)

Ok here's the story. Had my XP all tweaked and nice, just how I like it, you know how it goes, takes a couple months of minor adjustments here and there, of things you may have forgotten the first time, and remember a week later, etc.

So anyways, things are fine for a good 6-7 months, then I try to install a new webcam, the Microsoft LifeCam VX-6000. Instead of just installing the driver, I though, ok what the heck, I'll check out their software... long story short, it caused a bunch of F-ups with my ATI Graphics card, could not install CCC anymore (ATI's control panel), and Windows would not load MOM.exe anymore, which is needed for ATI's CCC (catalyst control center).

Restore points didn't work, neither did uninstalling / reinstalling the LifeCam software or my ATI HD3850 drivers.

So, I decided to re-install Windows XP on an unused 25gb partition. Everything went fine, but now I want to get rid of the installation on the C: partition. Every time I try to format it says I cannot do it, I am assuming that it's because that C: is the boot volume.

How can I make sure that my new installation is the boot volume and the C: drive is able to be formatted and is just relegated to a storage partition? Is this even possible? Should I just re-install over the C: Drive? I know that's the easy answer but if someone can solve the challenge of completely changing it that would be appreciated.

Thanks for your time!
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  1. As you say, you can't format the boot volume. Just as well, really! I'm sure that with a few registry hacks and a bit of other work you could get your current drive to be the boot partition, but how lucky do you feel? One error and your system is unbootable.

    Personally I would take the easy answer.
  2. Yeah I'll mess around in the registry from time to time, but no where near the level it would probably take to achieve my goal.

    I'll probably just install over C:. I was just remaining hopeful because as anyone who does fresh installs of Windows knows, the rest of the day is relegated to driver installation and re-installing your productivity software, games, and essential hardware setup. As well as tweaking the windows install itself to get it how you like it.

    Sigh... wanted to avoid doing that twice in one week.

    Well maybe I'll just leave it as is, and next time it screws up, I'll re-install over C: again this time.
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