Fine-tuning the reformat-reinstall process for Windows 95

Question: A recent article on formatting your hard drive and re-installing Windows 95 has a couple of “gotchas” that caused me some concern. After preparing a boot floppy, it would be wise to ensure that it properly starts up the computer and particularly the CD drive, before proceeding to format the C: drive. Also, before you start this exercise it would be prudent to ensure you have a full-blown Windows 95 install disk, because an upgrade disk would not install on a newly formatted hard drive. And you also referred to FDISK, but didn’t discuss it. —P.J.

Answer: Good points all around. I would add that, if you have an upgrade version of Windows 95, all you need is a version of Win 3.1 kicking around to pop in to a drive when prompted. As for FDISK, it’s a DOS utility used to create disk partitions, in case you want to carve up a large hard drive into several smaller drives. It’s not mandatory to copy it to a boot disk, but it’s handy if you have hard drive partitions on your system.