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Can't Format Hard Drive


Well-known member
Apr 26, 2009
Saskatoon, SK
I have been working on my new-ish computer and the only thing I need to do now is get the hard drive in/ formated. The HDD is from my old computer, and I can quite plug it in and have it be ready for multiple reasons 1) Drivers, 2) Old computer was AMD, new one is Intel, and 3) the HDD is the ONLY old part I am using.

I went ahead and went into my BIOS and set the CD/DVD drive to boot first, and than saved, and restarted the computer. Than, it recognizes the VISTA disk, says "To boot from CD press any key", which I do, but that it either continues to the desktop, or starts to read the disk, than fails. (I assume its failing because it goes to the vista screen [with the blues, and greens], but stays blank and nothing pops up) Would it make a difference to use an XP disk to defrag? ALSO, I backed up my media to a partition that I want to save - if possible.


Fallen Folder
Jul 29, 2008
Nova Scotia
IIRC the blue/greens screen may be there for quite some time and eventually it finishes whatever it's doing and the install starts.


Well-known member
Feb 23, 2008
your in repair mode with those colour scheme

question this old HDD the only on your new build? or have a new HDD

if only old unit used best to back-up your data off the HDD then let windows setup format the drive

or install new HDD and OS then install old HDD and take data you want then format with in vista


Aug 18, 2008
Do you have any other kind of CD/DVD you can test with? Maybe a live boot CD of Ubuntu, for example, to see if you can boot to that?

My first suspicion wouldn't be the HDD; it would be the DVD drive and/or the motherboard's chipset being flaky.



Well-known member
Mar 9, 2009
Surrey, B.C.
defrag? format?

I'm lost reading this....

If the old install was WinXP, just boot off the WinXP cd and do a repair install

If the old install was Vista, just boot up off that HD and wait like 20 minutes.... the screen will stay black. After at least 20 minutes walk back up to the computer and tap this keyboard sequence:

Start => U => R => TAB => ENTER

The machine will restart and should "just work"

In most of the builds/upgrades I do to Vista that is enough to do it. Presumably while the screen is black it's installing all the drivers it needs for the new mb/processor/etc.

After reading the OP for the 5th time the only thing I can think is that he may need a driver for the HD to show up for some reason? I don't know. I really don't understand the OP.


Well-known member
Oct 3, 2007
he he hehe I bet I know what it is try turning on the usb for you mouse and keyboard. I had something simular happen to me a few times I was able to get into my bios with out any problems but when it got passed that stage my keyboard didn't work until I fully booted into my operating system it ended up being my Gigabyte bios setting for usb mouse and keyboard where on defualt which means off I turned them on and was able to boot when asked to press any key on keyboard.
so check your bios for the usb keyboard and mouse settings and make surwe that are on

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