What are the steps to format your hard drive from the BIOS?

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What are the steps to format your hard drive from the BIOS?

Post by shravan »

The very first question that stricks our mind after reading this question is - Can you really Format Hard Disks from BIOS Settings?

No, Not at all you can't format a hard drive from BIOS; you actually can't format any drive or partition directly from those settings.

That's because your computer's BIOS was not designed for this purpose. The BIOS determines if all the attachments are operational when booting up your computer, and it loads the operating system into the RAM as your computer is running.

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Formatting hard drives are usually pretty simple. However, the process becomes a bit complex when you need to format the drive where your operating system is located or when you can’t even access the operating system at all. This tends to lead people to ask whether they can format their hard drive using the BIOS system, which is your motherboard’s firmware.

Now, even if it is impossible to format a hard drive from BIOS, you shouldn't be hopeless. There are other ways you can format hard drive use from BIOS. The easiest way is to boot from a bootable drive such as a CD, DVD, or USB flash, by changing the BIOS settings to allow formatting.

Before you start, remember that the formatting process will delete all the data on your drive, including data on the system partition. Make sure to take back up your data before booting from a bootable drive to prevent any data loss.

How to Format Hard Drive from BIOS?

To format a hard drive from BIOS, you have to change the settings to boot automatically from disk. In this way, when the disk is loaded upon restart, the PC will prompt a message asking you whether you want to reformat the drive.

I am assuming you have Windows 10, you can format the hard drive from BIOS via the command prompt. To do this, you have to create an installation media (either a bootable CD or USB flash drive) with the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool. Once you've done that, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Set the boot drive in BIOS as explained above, then reboot your computer from the installation media.

Step 2: When Windows setup loads, select your language, time and currency format, and Keyboard or input method, then click Next.

Step 3: The next screen prompts you to click on Install Now, but you have to choose the Repair your computer option at the bottom of the screen.

Step 4: Choose Troubleshoot on the next screen.

Step 5: In the Advanced options screen, click on Command Prompt.

Step 6: Find the system partition by typing the following commands and hitting the enter key each time:

List volume
Dir F:
In the commands above, F is the directory of the selected volume (which is typically F on Windows 10, not C as on older versions of the operating system). If you can't find Windows here, just repeat the commands and replace F with C or D until you find it. Windows is listed in the directory of the selected volume, so just check to see if it's there.

Step 7: Once you found Windows, supposing it's on partition F, enter the following command: format F: /fs:ntfs (replace F with the partition letter where Windows is installed on your computer).

The system will prompt you with a message informing you'll lose all data and ask if you want to proceed with the format. Type Y and press enter to start formatting.

Whether you want to format a hard drive from BIOS due to an unexpected system failure or just because you want to reinstall your system, the steps above should help you do it like a pro.
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