Formatting Hard Drive Unnecessary?

By RossMan4Life ยท 6 replies
Nov 14, 2005
  1. Sorry if this is a stupid question you guys see often, didn't see it pop up on search...
    My C drive crashed, and I got a replacement drive. Installed windows xp on my new C, and my D can't be accessed in Windows. It claims it has to be formatted. I know hard drives can be swapped, why is it claiming that it has to be formatted all of a sudden? Both drives are FAT32, not NTFS, as I installed 98se then upgraded to xp with my original set up and this one. Also, I tried C as an NTFS and had no luck either. So my set up is the same with that, both FAT32, though I don't believe that makes a difference. Any ideas?
  2. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

    Is D your old C-drive?
    If so, did you change the jumpers on the HD-back from Master to Slave?
    Boot from a W98SE bootdisk (or get the W98SE OEM version from,
    run FDISK on the second harddisk D, and remove the 'Set Partition Active' or something like that from that disk. This will NOT mess with whatever data is on that disk.
    Exit FDISK and boot into Windows from the new drive.
  3. RossMan4Life

    RossMan4Life TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Sorry for being unclear, no, my old C is scrapped. My old D is still the one in use. I'm fairly certain I didn't change the jumper settings to make it a slave or anything either, as I didn't have an OS installed on it and my goal was to get my original set up. So as far as I know, the jumpers still have it set to be my secondary drive.
  4. fatboy1109

    fatboy1109 TS Rookie

    Sorry if this is not helpful but this is eactly what has happened to me although my disk was connected as a raid disc............ comeon anyone got a work round for this problem???????????
  5. Samstoned

    Samstoned TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,018

    check in computer manager see what the file sysem is
    from what I gather xp will convert to ntfs and not mess with the files
    I did not use xp 's convert tool(if there is one)
    I have tested paragon partition manager with this problem
    I created a partition in fat32 added file to it accesed under my XP ntfs file system ,no errors
    went back to PM and converted to ntfs ,files still good.
    not format ,but convert
  6. mikescorpio81

    mikescorpio81 TS Rookie Posts: 293

    XP does have a convert tool.

    In command prompt type:

    convert C: /FS:NTFS
    & follow the prompts (not your C: vol label too)

    After a restart it will begin to convert. It will not hurt existing files.

    With ur disk ... just format it. If its brand new it probably hasnt been formatted so do it through Computer Management.
  7. RossMan4Life

    RossMan4Life TS Rookie Topic Starter

    The hard drive in question (my D) shows up in my computer manager, but lists nothing where NTFS or FAT32 should be, though I know for a fact it is FAT32. It has all the data I have left, since my C drive crapped out on me. I'm not particularly eager to format it for that reason. Also, I haven't altered the drive since my previous OS drive crashed, so it should be readable in Windows... Any other ideas? (I'll try converting it tonight, I'm at work now)
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