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How to FDISK utility to Partition and format your hard disc

Updated on April 3, 2011

FDISK utility to Partition

How to FDISK utility to Partition and format your hard disk

Disk partitioning is the creation of portion on the disk that act as though they are independent disk, for example you may Drive E:, F:,C: within a hard disk. When you buy your hard disk it’s not ready for use until you partition it.

Should bear in mind that different operating system will create partition differently for instant Windows NT(New Technology) create partitions in the process of the Operating system installation, and it’s also possible to create partition using the disk administrator utility after installation.

For other windows family of operating system the fdisk utility is used to partition the disc drive. This is activated by the following command at the DOS prompt

a) A:\> fdisk – this will open fdisk menu

b) FDISK menu

  1. Create partitions
  2. Set partition as active – this enable one to alter setting of the BIOS boot sequence
  3. Delete partition
  4. Display partition information

NB: Choose option 1 when you are partitioning a newly purchased hard disk

c) You’ll be prompted to create the following

1. Primary Dos partition

2. Extended Dos partition

3. Logical Dos partition

Primary Dos partition contains the start up files programs thus drive C, to create drive D, E, F choose extended Dos partition. To subdivided extended Dos partition choose logical Dos partition

Option 3: When you want to delete your partition you will use this delete partition option, note that for you to delete your primary partition you first delete your extended Dos partition

Option 4: This will display the information of the partition hard disk.

Formatting partition

Before a disc can be used its various partitions must be formatted to make them usable by the OS. Formatting partition creates 4 areas on the partition drive namely

a) Master boot record

b) Boot record

c) File Allocation Table

d) Data area

Master boot record

Consist of a single sectors, that contains partition table and other information associated with the partition

Boot record

This sector contains disc information and the code that is used along with OS and Ms. DOS to both cold boot and warm boot the computer. It also contain a short machine code to load operating system

File allocation table (FAT)

The file allocation table stores an entry for every cluster of the disc. The value held in the file allocation table indicate whether the cluster is

a) Already in sue i.e. storing a users data

b) Free for use i.e. can be used for storing new files or part of an old file

The value held in the FAT indicate whether the cluster mark as in usable whether their is faulty sector in the cluster.

Data area

Used for storing of data files, directories and sub directories


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