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Re-format the hard drive and Reinstall Windows XP


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#1 Norm in need

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Posted 26 May 2011 - 10:43 PM

I have had a large number of viruses in succession and now I just want to wipe my hard drive and start over. I have a Dell Dimension 2400. I have the reinstallation disk for XP and the resource disks. On the Dell website I found directions for Manually Reinstalling the operating system. It just instructs me to begin with booting from the Op system reinstallation disk and allowing it to format the drive (or largest partition, it says). I suspect that this will leave me vulnerable to the persistent virus(es) that infected the computer. Also, I have a second internal hard drive that I should wipe clean also.
Can someone please direct me to some good instructions to do this?

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#2 Norm in need

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Posted 26 May 2011 - 11:17 PM

Also, I have read that using F-disk may not completely erase viruses. That article said the drive must be wiped. Comments?

#3 Allan

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Posted 27 May 2011 - 06:32 AM

Boot to the XP CD. Delete all partitions. Recreate partition(s). Format - install.

#4 N.E.

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Posted 27 May 2011 - 08:56 AM

Reformatting the drive will delete all files that can contain malicious code. Bad stuff can also reside in an area called the Master Boot Record. Letting the installation CD reformat the drive will also rewrite the Master Boot Record during the process.

Depending on what you keep on your 2nd drive you may be safe without reformatting the drive. If it contains only data files, you are probably OK. If it contains programs, scanning the drive with several tools such as Malwarebytes, SuperAntiSpyware, and a good Antivirus program will ensure that you are free of the bad stuff. Just make sure you scan the second drive before running any programs from the second drive after you reinatall Windows.

#5 N.E.

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Posted 27 May 2011 - 08:58 AM

Regarding what Allan said about deleting all partitions, if you machine has a recovery partition (a very small 2nt partition), you may not want to delete that is at all possible.

#6 Allan

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Posted 27 May 2011 - 09:04 AM

If he has a recovery partition he doesn't need to reformat and reinstall.

And of course if he has an XP CD he doesn't need the recovery partition :)

#7 Eyesee

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Posted 27 May 2011 - 12:14 PM

The Dell restoration cd will recreate the recovery partition if necessary so deleting both is safe.
Before proceeding make sure that you have all necessary drivers ready from here
Put them on a jump drive or burn them to DVD.
You want to download the chipset, audio, video, network and communications drivers only.
Be sure to install the chipset first and then the order of the rest really doesnt matter.
I always do chipset, audio, video, network then modem.

After that install antivirus software, malware programs and the rest of your apps.

If you have a USB printer, unplug it from either the back of the computer or printer (whichever is easier) befire reinstalling XP. After the drivers are installed, run the cd tha came with the printer & dont plug it in until promted to do so.
In the beginning there was the command line.

#8 Norm in need

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Posted 27 May 2011 - 06:18 PM

Thank you Allan, N.E. and Eyesee. Great advice and I am on my way to restoring. :thumbsup:
Norm




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