Format or Delete Partition

By JC713
Aug 29, 2013
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  1. I am planning on clean installing Windows 7, but I do not get the difference between formatting and deleting. When you do a custom install of windows, you get the option to delete or format. Which option should I choose? I am used to just deleting all partitions and just creating a new one to start from scratch, but is formatting any different?
  2. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,082   +1,184

    Formating will erase the partition, however a partition must exist before hand.
    Deleting a partition will allow you to create a new partition of varying size.
    Keep in mind that the partition will still need to be formated after one is created.

    Think of it this way:
    Partition defines the borders, while formating defines the table type within.
    JC713 likes this.
  3. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] I'm a TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 4,257   +110

    If you delete the partition you will end up with unallocated space and will need to make a new partition. If you format it, it'll just erase all the data on that partition.
    JC713 likes this.
  4. JC713

    JC713 TechSpot Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 6,120   +732

    Thanks. So if I delete the current partition I have, and then click New, I will be good to go right?
  5. JC713

    JC713 TechSpot Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 6,120   +732

    Do you guys prefer one method over another?
  6. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,082   +1,184

    Formating is fine, unless you want to change partition sizes. Even then the partition can be resized without deleting the partition.
  7. JC713

    JC713 TechSpot Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 6,120   +732

    I have a OEM (Lenovo) laptop, so I have a 30GB partition for drivers. I want to delete that and create one large partition. So I guess I have to delete. Thanks for the help.


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