Spyware, Viruses, & Security forum


Reformatting hard drive in order to rid viruses

by Alex_Martinez / January 12, 2012 7:38 AM PST

Hello, I have a Dell Latitude E6410 with Windows 7. Unfortunately, it has become infected with many viruses - to the point where I need to wipe it clean. It repeatedly crashes shortly after being uploaded and brings me to the blue screen. I called Dell and basically they told me it will be $199 to fix [the viruses], which I cannot afford to pay. I have all of the original discs that the computer came with, so re-installing all of the software should not pose a problem. I am looking for steps to correctly reformat my hard drive/computer. Please be very specific and try to state things as simply as possible, as I am not the most handy computer person.
As a side note, please do not suggest that I call Dell, as I have already done that. They have told me that I cannot be helped unless I pay, and I would rather throw my computer into a river then pay them anymore money. I have three Dell laptops and three Dell desktops currently in the family household and have been a loyal customer for years. The fact that I am refused assistance without fronting money is dispicable and egregious, and in the future my family and I will probably look elsewhere for our computer needs.
But all aside, I would greatly appreciate any help/insight that anyone has to offer. In desperate need of help, Alex

Answer This Ask For Clarification
Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: Reformatting hard drive in order to rid viruses
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: Reformatting hard drive in order to rid viruses
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.

All Answers

Collapse -
No formatting required. Just recover it.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 12, 2012 7:52 AM PST

When you boot again tap F8 and use Advanced Boot Options, and got to the Choose a Recovery Tool,

Under Choose a Recovery Tool, you may see:
Startup Repair,
System Restore,<b>
System Image Recovery

Use that one!

Collapse -
Reformatting guide
by edwardnav / January 13, 2012 11:55 PM PST

If Bob's suggestion doesn't work because all your restore points are infected have a look at this post: http://forums.cnet.com/7723-10149_102-66200/2-25-05-how-to-reformat-your-hard-drive/

Good luck, its not exactly an easy process. And any documents that you transfer / reinstall, may be infected. Therefore you might want to run "anti" programs as you reinstall these "doc's, pictures, etc. In addition, there are a number of "free" anti programs that you can download and try and run to see if you can get rid of all the bad stuff. You can download them from the Cnet downloads or other places like Filehippo. If you look at this post it will give you guidance on what to try: http://forums.cnet.com/7723-6132_102-238606/welcome-to-s-v-s-forum-security-tools-and-removal-resources/?tag=contentBody;threadListing When I have helped people before, I have gone to the Control Panel and removed anything that looked strange, use Google to find out what stuff is and uninstall if necessary. Then try any "anti" programs. By the way what "anti" programs do you have installed. At least one firewall, one and only one anti-virus program, and maybe one anti-spyware program are needed to keep a computer safe. By the way I also have a Dell computer, had it for about ten years, and for the most part I have been able to keep it clean.


Collapse -
by Alex_Martinez / January 14, 2012 4:03 AM PST
In reply to: Reformatting guide

Okay, as an update, my computer did not have a system image to restore to so I have booted my system from the OS (Win 7) CD and just clicked to "Format" Disk 0 Partition 2 which is labeled "Primary" and that was successful. There is, however, another option, which is "Disk 0 Partition 1: system reserved" and is total size: 300.0 MB and has free space 260.0 MB and under type is labeled "System"
I do not know what this is or if I should format, delete, or just let it be. I have heard of viruses creating separate partitions for themselves, but I also feel that it may just be the CD/CD drive.
I would be very grateful if someone could advise me on this issue.

Collapse -
by kratm / January 14, 2012 3:19 PM PST
In reply to: Update

The System Reserved Partition is a default function of Win 7 installation

But if you want to reassure yourself just delete it and then install

Win7 will recreate it during install

Popular Forums
Computer Help 51,224 discussions
Computer Newbies 10,453 discussions
Laptops 20,090 discussions
Security 30,722 discussions
TVs & Home Theaters 20,937 discussions
Windows 10 1,295 discussions
Phones 16,252 discussions
Windows 7 7,684 discussions
Networking & Wireless 15,215 discussions


Roku Streaming Stick 2016

Roku has the most apps, the simplest interface and the best search, making it CNET's favorite way to stream Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, HBO and all the rest.