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Windows Thread, Low level drive format before a reimage in Technical; Am I wasting my time if I do a low level disk format on a hard drive (i.e. write 000000000 ...
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    Low level drive format before a reimage

    Am I wasting my time if I do a low level disk format on a hard drive (i.e. write 000000000 to it) before reimaging it?

    Was thinking it may offer a slight performance increase...

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    DMcCoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by googlemad View Post
    Am I wasting my time if I do a low level disk format on a hard drive (i.e. write 000000000 to it) before reimaging it?

    Was thinking it may offer a slight performance increase...
    How? I don't think I've low level formatted a drive since the 90s.

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    powdarrmonkey's Avatar
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    It won't make any performance difference at all. The only reason for wiping a drive in this manner is privacy.

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    Michael's Avatar
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    Was thinking it may offer a slight performance increase...
    It definitely won't make read/write speeds faster. It'll just make it incredibly hard to recover anything from it.

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    Thats not a low level format any way just data wiping.

    Ben

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    mac_shinobi's Avatar
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    DBAN - Darik's Boot And Nuke | Hard Drive Disk Wipe

    If you want to ensure all your data is securely wiped

    If you just want to format it to start again then a low level format will do this ( if you do a full low level format instead of a quick one ) then that will also check the hard drive for any bad sectors etc and try to repair them if possible

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    plexer's Avatar
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    It would make data from the drive slightly more difficult to recover - but if you are just talking about a standard classroom machine; then just re-imaging it will have the same results.

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    Thanks, I was just trying to make sure certain rooms benefit from my new image this year since some of the new PC bids ain't happening now!!

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    Start DOS prompt, type debug then on the next line g=c800:5 and press enter

    Now if you know what that does you've either been in IT a long time or are a true uber geek


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    Quote Originally Posted by gshaw View Post
    Start DOS prompt, type debug then on the next line g=c800:5 and press enter

    Now if you know what that does you've either been in IT a long time or are a true uber geek
    That brings back memories not used that since I had an Amstrad PC1512 and a 32Mb RLL hard drive in the late 80's which I thought I would never fill.

    I didn't think you could low level format modern drives unless you have access to expensive test beds in hard drive factories, doesn't a modern drive remap any attempt to low level it into a standard format?

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    Quote Originally Posted by googlemad View Post
    Am I wasting my time if I do a low level disk format on a hard drive (i.e. write 000000000 to it) before reimaging it?

    Was thinking it may offer a slight performance increase...
    A zero fill will not increase performance, but it does have its place.

    One pass of zeros is a lot more effective at destroying data than many people will have you believe; once you zero fill the drive it takes a mad professor with an electron microscope to get the data off. These multiple pattern multiple pass wiping tools are a waste of time most of the time, although admittedly I used the highest setting on dban when I wiped our bursar's old machine last month... it took two days

    A zero fill will get rid of any bad blocks caused by software - sometimes blocks get marked as bad by windows when they're not, there's nothing wrong with the hardware. This usually happens through unclean reboots, that sort of thing.

    Zero filling utilities are also good for getting rid of screwy hard disk problems like the windows installer not getting rid of grub after you've had linux on there... for this you only need to do the very beginning of the disk, but it's quite effective. ImageX problems can sometimes be fixed by doing this... not that I think anyone should use ImageX! As a general rule, if I'm getting screwy problems with a hard drive I usually end up doing a zero fill. It kinda gives you a clean slate and it doesn't take too long really.

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