Should I Format my Hard Drive

PetraT

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I want to install linux on an older core Duo laptop. I would like to get rid of windows completely. Is it okay to reformat the hard drive first?
 


arochester

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It is OK but probably unnecessary because Linux will format.
 

sp331yi

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IME, it's a good idea to format the entire drive as ext2 first, then partitioon and format as desired. This getsrid of all that dirty ntfs file system so it does not interfere with a clean setup, especially if one wants to install a Slackware-based OS.
 

darry1966

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Use parted if you want. But as was said installer procedure ends up with formatting happening anyway. I use ext4.
 

sp331yi

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Two BASIC types of file systems (fs) -- journaled and non-journaled. Journaled takes more resources and in doing so guards somewhat against accidental file loss. Non-journaled is 'old-school,- takes less of your PC's resources and is somewhat faster.
would like to get rid of windows completely.
Then, wipe the drive completely!
. . . probably unnecessary because Linux will format.
On the contrarty, I have found it necessary on many occassions when dealing with older computers and used hard drives. Otherwise, I would not have recommended it.
But as was said installer procedure ends up with formatting happening anyway. I use ext4.
Yes it does, but on many occassions I have found remnants of the dirty file system, ntfs, and they can foul up an install (believe it or not -- I don't care).

Those who know more than I have thought about it and found nothing wrong with my recommendation, as stated in my first post in this thread.

Do what you want, but if you want to certainly get rid of Windoze, this is what I would do. If, later you find problems, one cannot blame someone who says 'probably.' But that person would have been proven wrong, although at your expense.

It's a free OS and you're free to do as you please. Please do!
And -- Welcome!
 

linu89waltzodi

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Linux will format entire hard drive but is BEST to format all before. Make sure you have the linux platform saved as boot in thumb drive at least on a 16gb. If you have anything important make sure you save it on a different thumb drive makes sure not on a floppy disk :p.

Once you are ready to format use dban.org, download it and burn on a dvd in iso format. Completely, burned. Reset the computer and key on boot menu. Select DVD. Follow the instructions....... It will take time to erase completely depending how big is your hard drive or ssd. Usually ssd are faster compare a freaky hard drive disk :p. Once is done. Remove the dbad disk and place your linux thumb drive. Reset the the computer and key boot menu and select USB. From there just follow linux instructions and later it will ask you if you will like to format. YES. That way every thing is fresh and don't end up with any problems.

I just like how simple Linux is I mean yeah does require coding, "if you hang around you learn how to use it". Other than that is free :) and is yours, plus it keeps updating.
 

jglen490

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In terms of performance, there is very little difference between ext2 and ext4. One aspect of performance, is reliability. Having a journaled fs like ext4 provides the "rest of the story".

I would not worry about formatting the drive first. The installer will assist you with taking care of that, and as well as and even better than dban or Gparted or any other tool. "Pre-formatting" the drive will distract from your goal of installing a Linux distro, and could cause additional issues when using the tool that would have to be resolved before your ever get to the actual install.

Have you decided on a distro? To avoid the normal "distro wars" that commence with the question, pick one, install it, run it for a while. You can ALWAYS install a different distro later on.

And finally, the first rule of killing Windows/installing Linux is save any files you want to keep (docs, spreadsheets, movies, books, pictures, etc. to some off machine drive or thumb drive or cloud service. Then dive in and install Linux.
 
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