Can you fry your HD by re-installing Windows too many times?? 14 replies

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bladewest

Steve From Iran

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18th April 2006

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#11 13 years ago

reforming CAN damage a hard drive what happens is the sectors become writable once again, and most of the data is wiped but some of it is left over and each time you do it it stays to be technical, it takes approximately 678 times reformating to destroy or damage a sector, on an average IDE hdd that has no other problems so in theory you can damage sectors by doing it just once if there are other problems, such as with your controller channels but yes i agreed that reformat once every 6-8 months i asked this question to a friend of mine awhile back and i thought the above info he gave was kinda interesting ^^ just FYI




Rookie VIP Member

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3rd May 2005

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#12 13 years ago

Reformatting your hard drive won't do any harm, unless you do it literally every few days, which can (and will) significantly reduce the MTBF. Now if we were talking about Low Level Formatting, I would be worried.




bladewest

Steve From Iran

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18th April 2006

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#13 13 years ago

lol yea i just thought it was great that my friend has the knowledge of the 678 times i dont want to know how or how many hours of his life he wasted... but geeze right? ^^




C38368

...burning angel wings to dust

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14th February 2004

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#14 13 years ago

NeikenThats how the fbi and other agencys collect information that people think is gone. Its never really gone.[/quote] A basic format only wipes the partition table. A low-level format will nail the MBR also, and something like DBaN will ruin all data on the platter.

[quote=bladewest]reforming CAN damage a hard drive what happens is the sectors become writable once again, and most of the data is wiped but some of it is left over

The fallacy in that statement is that: 1) It's wrong, and 2) Data is always overwritable on the drive. It happens all the time. Bad sectors don't develop as a result of formatting, they develop as the result of use. You get them just by having the drive installed and actively written to or read from.

There was a scientific paper written many years ago regarding the use of electron microscopes to read overwritten data, on the theory that a 0 flipped to a 1 would leave a discernable trace and vice versa, and therefore you could reconstruct at least a partial record of what was on the platter before being wiped. That's never been proven to work, and the paper has been subjeted to quite a bit of comment since it was published. At any rate, that's where the notion that formatting left a trace seems to have come from.

Simply deleting a file does leave a trace, because the software simply marks that area of the drive as "empty", without necessarily flipping the bits to zeroes.




deathwarder

Part of the EPA's swat team

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2nd January 2006

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#15 13 years ago

yeah, if you look, there is a hidden folder called recycler or some such thing on the rott of your drive, it contains your last emptied recycle bin




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