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Old 07-08-2003, 12:04 AM   #1
justin9
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Registered: Jul 2003
Location: Toronto
Distribution: Fedora Core 2
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Exclamation I can't format my hard drive! help!


So, I have this new hard drive, in my new computer. I had Lindows, but I wanted Red Hat Linux 8.0 instead, so I started installing it. Partway through it crashed, so I ran the install again. Soon it gave me a fatal hard drive error and quit, so I decided to just format my hard drive and start all over. So I used my trusty ol Partition Magic boot disc and tryed to reformat it, but no, it wouldn't let me! It gave me another error and said it couldnt be completed. Well, im really stuck, so if anyone could help, id really, really appreciate it. thanks!

ps. i have this 160GB Maxtor that I bought, and I was going to put it in my computer, but then this happened, so i decided not to, incase i somehow messed it up too. should I put it in? thanks.
 
Old 07-08-2003, 12:17 AM   #2
fancypiper
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1. Boot into Linux with a "live CD" or boot floppy

KNOPPIX Linux Live CD
Linux Bootable Business Card
Tom's Root and Boot floppy

# Cheap CDs
Discount Linux CDs
Linux Central
Cheapbytes
TuxCDs
ComputerHelperGuy

2. Erase the drive completely with the command below that matches where your drive is attached on the IDE chain:

dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hda
dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hdb
dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hdc
dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hdd

If that finishes with no errors, you should be able to format with Linux fdisk or partition magic.

Good luck.

If you ever have had a fat32 filesystem on a drive, do this before partitioning to have a clean drive.
 
Old 07-08-2003, 01:47 PM   #3
justin9
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I made a Red Hat 8 boot floppy, I can use that right?
 
Old 07-08-2003, 02:05 PM   #4
fancypiper
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There are boot floppies to boot you to a working Linux such as toms root and boot, and there are boot floppies that boot the install program. If you can boot to a command line prompt, yes. I don't think you have a working installation yet, right?

If your boot floppy in an install boot, try that and see if you can install using text and expert so you can see any error messages.

Last edited by fancypiper; 07-08-2003 at 02:07 PM.
 
Old 07-08-2003, 02:20 PM   #5
justin9
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Well, I booted with the red hat floppy and ran that line like you said. I got a blank line with a cursor, and I assumed it was erasing. Soon after, my computer froze, and when I tried to load the floppy again I got a whole lot of errors followed by
"Kernel Panic: No init found. Try passing init= option to kernel"
and my scroll lock and caps lock lights were flashing. I thought I had done enough damage and then left. Whats going on???
 
Old 07-08-2003, 02:34 PM   #6
fancypiper
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Is this a linux only box or a dual boot with windows working correctly? I don't know exactly what you have to work with. Details are very important and we are very poor mind readers even though better than most.

For one thing, you don't have a working installation on your hard drive to be able to boot into is what is happening with your boot disk.

Quote:
Partition Magic boot disc and tryed to reformat it, but no, it wouldn't let me!
I think the partitioning table on your hard disk is messed up and won't allow you to partition correctly.

To recover, again I suggest completely zeroing your hard drive so you can start over with a fresh clean drive.

To get a working Linux going without installing, get one of these:

A Linux bootable floppy:
Tom's Root and Boot floppy
A Linux "Live CD"
KNOPPIX Linux Live CD - You can buy this here

Using one of those boot into Linux and zero your drive and try again.
dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hd<x>

Last edited by fancypiper; 07-08-2003 at 02:36 PM.
 
Old 07-08-2003, 03:22 PM   #7
justin9
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Alright, but I have one slight problem. My only other working computer is a Mac, and you need a pc to install Tom's root and boot as far as I can tell. I would order that cd, but I need to get my computer working as soon as possible. Any ideas?
 
Old 07-08-2003, 03:33 PM   #8
fancypiper
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The Ranish Partition Manager may be able to repair it, but I'm not sure how Mac works, so I am sort of helpless.

Besides the auto partitioning, have you tried disk druid, fdisk and cfdisk to partition?

How about fips20 on your install CD? Does Red Hat still supply that?

Have you tried your other drive yet? Perhaps the drive is dead if nothing will partition/repair it. Did you try installing and testing either hard drive with the drive manufacture's utilities?

That's all I can think of off hand.

# Redhat links
RedHat Linux Manuals
Get your mp3 support here
Maximum RPM
rpmfind
Easier software management: apt4rpm - Red Carpet
RedHat 8.0 Tips & Tricks

# Redhat 7.3 down configuration commands
setup leads to several configuration tools

# Redhat 7.3 up configuration commands
Configure soundcard:
redhat-config-soundcard
Configure X server:
redhat-config-xfree86
Configure network:
redhat-config-network

# Handling NTFS
New Technology FileSystem (NTFS) HOWTOs
Linux NTFS project

Last edited by fancypiper; 07-08-2003 at 03:35 PM.
 
Old 07-08-2003, 03:49 PM   #9
v00d00101
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Do you have a low level format utility in the bios, if so run it.

I'll guess from your problems u have a maxtor, fujitsu or ibm hdd; but most likely a maxtor.

Best advice would be to get a new hard drive, and get a seagate or western digital. I use only those in my systems and ive not had any major probs with them.
Ive in the past had to return lots of maxtors and ibms, and a friend recently had to return 2000 fujitsus from a company order.
 
Old 07-09-2003, 08:42 AM   #10
Mojojo
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Put the new maxtor in and try to install Redhat. Only if your sure there is nothing wrong with your discs.
 
  


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