|QUOTE (Stink_Fist @ Apr 24 2009, 01:35)|
| Ok, I'm not the biggest computer buff here, hence why I'm taking a few classes at school, to boost my knowledge. I've heard everyone talking about re-formatting their pc, I don't really get it, they just say it will run faster. I'm guessing it just deletes all the software you don't need and leaves the stuff you use. Wouldit be possible for someone to PM about how it works, and what it does? Cheers. |
First of all, you need to understand a little bit about partitions. Disks that Windows shows you are essentially one logical partition each. These can be distributed between one or more Hard Drive Disks. There are some other partitions hidden from view that are used by the system. Formatting a partition destroys all data on it and lets you set up a new file system. For home-use purposes, data destroyed in format cannot be recovered. Data recovery experts can get around it, though, so formatting is not a good way to get rid of the data you really want gone. Neither is deleting files. You have to use special software to really destroy data.
If you format a partition that holds your operating system (Disk C, most commonly under DOS and Windows OS), your operating system will be gone. You will have to install it again from scratch. All your settings and all the files and folders on that partition will be erased.
If you have multiple partitions, you can format one without destroying contents of others. So if you have Disk C and Disk D for storing data, you can move everything you want to keep to D, and then format C. That lets you re-install a fresh copy of your operating system, which can help with performance. Typically, that's what people mean when they suggest formatting disk to improve performance.
If you do attempt this, keep in mind the following. All files on partition will be effectively gone. Back up everything you want to keep. It might be a good idea to backup to external drive, just in case. You will need to re-install the OS. Your PC will be a paperweight until you do. There are distributions of Linux you can run off a CD, though. I recommend getting comfortable with one before attempting a format, because if something goes wrong, that bootable CD will be the only way for you to fix things and to reach files that may still be on your disks. Ubuntu and DSL Linux are good candidates for that. Nice thing about DSL is that it can be run on just about any machine. Ubuntu is more user friendly, though.