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Should I reformat pc myself?

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#1 michelle7


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Posted 31 December 2008 - 03:51 AM

I wonder if there is a way to tell if my pc needs reformatting. It used to be very very fast, now I have to wait min 5seconds - 3mins with every click. It's been like that the past year , I've had the pc for 4 years. I hear people say XP is easy to reformat, can someone advice? I don't want to send it to shops since it's a HP Compaq and the shops just might tah the originals inside.
FYI, i think my /b batteries are out (digital shop too far), the past 10mths, everytime I start my pc the year shows 2002, so I just adjust it each time.
Also, a Hp guy helped add in 512 extra ram (I cant contact him anymore)
And add in a dvd burner.
Will all the above affect my reformatting AND after reformatting, will it affect my added RAM and Incorrect date/Time and DVD burner. Thanks for help

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#2 dc3


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Posted 31 December 2008 - 06:08 AM

The date and time is kept by the battery on the motherboard, it's about the size of an American quarter and shinny silver. It should cost about $3.00 US. When you replace it make a mental note of which side the + is facing, this is important.

Reformatting the hdd won't effect any of the components that you've added. But before you do reformat and reinstall the operating system you should back up all of your important files, and if you have applications that you have downloaded and saved the setup for you should add those as well. You should also think about your emails and address book. Once you reformat the hdd everything will be gone. I would suggest backing these up on either CDs, DVDs, flash drives, or an another hdd.

If you have any doubts about having any infections you might want to consider wiping the hdd with an application like Darik'c Boot and Nook, this will overwrite everything on the hdd. A format will only take care of the Master File Table and leave the rest, this is like an index for the addresses to the files. In order to boot from this application you may need to enter the BIOS and change the boot order so that the CD-ROM is the first device in the boot order.

As for the reformat itself, do you have the installation CD for the operating system? If you do then it will be a matter of placing it in the optical drive and let it do its thing. It will prompt you to partition the hdd, it will show you the total size of the drive, you can have one partition, or two. If you go with two you can make one about 10GB in size for the operating system and use the remainder for the second partition on which you should store all of your files and applications that aren't part of Windows. It will then prompt you to format the partitions, you will want to use NTFS. The disk will prompt you for everything else. There is a good tutorial for making the installation, you can read it here. And you can always post any questions that you may have back here.

One last thought, in the tutorial it suggest that you update your BIOS, you should only do this if you have a device which will not function with your current BIOS.

Edited by dc3, 31 December 2008 - 06:10 AM.

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#3 MilesAhead


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Posted 31 December 2008 - 02:56 PM

before doing anything I would run a diagnostic on the HD. If it's slow due to retries then formatting won't help anything. If the drive checks out OK then please provide more information like free space on the drive, last time you defragged it etc..

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#4 michelle7

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Posted 01 January 2009 - 02:21 AM

Hi dc3 and MilesAhead....Happy New Year! (Thks for replying)

@MilesAhead, how do I do a diagnostic test?
I did defrag. yesterday, it's better but still not as good as the first 30months. I still have to wait quite a while for certain sites though the hangng seems to have stopped/lessen (too soon to tell).

My free space on C was initialy 6% (about 3G of 80G), then I had to delete files so I could defrag at 11%(about 7G)

@dc3, I will get that battery this weekend. Any battery, or do I need to open up my cpu (never done this myself), get the battery out and show it to the shops? What alternative do I get if the shops don't carry the exact one?

Thank you.

#5 hamluis



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Posted 01 January 2009 - 09:30 AM

Battery is a CR2032, available just about anywhere (grocery stores, Walmart, etc.) that sells watch batteries, radio batteries, etc.

Costs less than $5.

Example: http://www.batterybob.com/product.asp?intProdID=101232


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