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Why do people format NEW harddrives???

Last response: in Storage
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February 18, 2012 9:29:08 PM

if you get a new harddrive theres nothing on it why do people bother formatting it? if ur going to install ur os on the new drive just connect it and run the windows disc. i never have issues with bad sectors or drives failing like so many other people. half the reviews on newegg and TD are harddrives people bought and they are formatting there new drive when theres no need to because the drive is already blank. then they say the drive stopped being recognized and died. someone eleborate if i missing something, because i have 4 computers and a total of 15 harddrives, new and old. this is about HDD not SSD btw
February 18, 2012 9:41:18 PM

lol, when you are insereting your windows disk and doing, next, next, bla bla it IS formatting it.

When you buy a hard disk it is BLANK.. meaning there is no way it knows how to store information. The windows setup (or Linux or any OS) will partition and format it automatically for you these days..

Most of us prefer doing it manually in order to choose certain paramaters or at a minimum the partition size
a b G Storage
February 18, 2012 9:53:35 PM

I never seen or bought a brand new internal hard drive that was pre-formatted. I've always had to partition and format them. I know all external storage devices come pre-formatted, but I still format them for they come with software I don't need or want.
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February 18, 2012 10:01:02 PM

I think there is a little confusion here about formatting and zeroing a hdd.
February 18, 2012 10:01:48 PM

im not saying they come pre formatedd with an OS on them already... im saying people format them and use the formatting tool when theres nothing on the drive to erase. my question is why do people do that
a b G Storage
February 18, 2012 10:41:22 PM

Because until you format the drive, NO OS will install. The installation CD will not see the drive until you format it to the proper file type - ext4, NTFS, FAT32 etc. This applies to any OS. That's why I always format a new drive.
a b G Storage
February 19, 2012 12:33:15 AM

The drive has to be formatted and partitioned, and set as "active" before you can do anything at all with it, even install the OS. Formatting is not the same as erasing or clearing a drive, it has a different purpose, the by-product of formatting a drive just happens to be that everything is wiped off the drive that was there. (not really, its still there just unreadable and set so it can be over written with new data) The install program does this automatically to default settings of 1 large partition, NTFS 32. It asks you this during the beginning of the install, some people probably just click yes and go right on without really thinking about what the installer is doing right then, like the OP has done apparently.
February 19, 2012 11:21:26 PM

ok makes sense. however i bought a WD 500gb HDD a few months ago. brand new. and all i did was pop in the windows disc and immediatley started installing the os without formatting it. can you explain? where is the option to format it?
a c 311 G Storage
February 19, 2012 11:26:18 PM

It is incorporated into the beginning of the installation process -- try popping a new drive into your computer as a secondary drive and then try to write some files to it -- well actually you won't even see the drive until you go into disk management -- then you will see the initialization and formatting process happen before you can use it.
February 19, 2012 11:30:56 PM

oh ok now thats the answer im looking for. whast the best file system to choose? ntfs?
a c 311 G Storage
February 19, 2012 11:34:11 PM

diablo24life said:
oh ok now thats the answer im looking for. whast the best file system to choose? ntfs?

For windows, yes ntfs unless it is a small flash drive, then fat 32 is fine.
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a b G Storage
February 19, 2012 11:35:39 PM

diablo24life said:
oh ok now thats the answer im looking for. whast the best file system to choose? ntfs?


It's really the only one. You use fat 32 for flash drives.
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