Forced Dismount of the C drive
March 14, 2008 7:21 AM   Subscribe

How do I do a forced dismount of my C drive so I can reformat it?

I need to reformat my C drive. Using the command prompt I tried and it came back saying I had utilities running and they had to be stopped first. It asked if I wanted to do a forced dismount and I said yes. However, nothing changed.

Can anyone help?

posted by Jandasmo to Technology (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
probably a stupid question, but your C drive is not your startup drive is it? Obviously you can't wipe your startup disk as your operating system is running from it
posted by derbs at 7:28 AM on March 14, 2008

It is. I want to completely start over.
posted by Jandasmo at 7:32 AM on March 14, 2008

Download the GParted Live CD, boot from it, and format away.
posted by chrisamiller at 7:34 AM on March 14, 2008

Boot from CD and reinstall the OS. Part of the install process will be reformatting the disc.
posted by Leon at 7:34 AM on March 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

sounds like derbs is corrected.

what operating system do you wish to install after wiping your c drive? im going to assume it is windows based on there being a c drive. if this is the case you will be asked if you would like to delete/create/format your c drive as part of the install process.

if you are doing this because you want to destroy sensitive data you could use a utility like darik's boot and nuke to completely wipe the drive before installing your os.
posted by phil at 7:37 AM on March 14, 2008


sounds like derbs is correct.
posted by phil at 7:39 AM on March 14, 2008

Go to and download any of the images that you would like, burn it to disk, boot from that disk, and then you should be able to reformat.

Good luck!
posted by mcarthey at 7:41 AM on March 14, 2008

To reinstall Windows you need to boot up with the windows CD. The CD will detect your C drive partition. It will ask you either to reinstall on top of this or to perform a reformat. Do the reformat. Continue with the installation. Wipe hands on pants.
posted by damn dirty ape at 7:42 AM on March 14, 2008

I second chrisamiller's GParted recommendation. It's quite thorough and safe, albeit a little bit on the techish side. But if you're looking to just reinstall Windows, everybody above is correct, part of the installation of Windows will be to reformat whatever partition you're installing it on. Good luck, and make sure to back up anything you don't want to lose (Especially internet bookmarks...that's a mistake I'll only ever make once...)
posted by Geppp at 2:10 PM on March 14, 2008

Gosh you guys make life hard.

Hold f8 as the computer boots. Press it a buncha times. From the boot menu that comes up, choose "...command prompt."

Put the CD in.

Format. Reinstall. Go.

Or just boot to CD and let the installer reformat for you.

However, since it sounds like you're new to this, make sure you have (at least) your network drivers before you reformat because you won't be able to get online w/o them to get the rest of your drivers.
posted by TomMelee at 6:33 PM on March 14, 2008

Leon is correct. Be warned that you will lose everything that is on that computer!
posted by gjc at 9:13 PM on March 14, 2008

« Older Make Vista work like 2K: How can I have my cake...   |   Trekking in Peru or Tibet? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.