FDISK FIND FORMAT delete change display information about the partitions on a hard disk search for a text string in a file or files Microsoft disk operating system command


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FDISK is a menu driven utility used to configure and/or display information about the partitions on a hard disk. You Should know What you are doing in FDISK environment and you should be sure for doing that otherwise it may delete or change your partitions’ information and you may suffer the loss of partitions(s) i.e. data.

Before a hard disk can be recognized by DOS, a Master Boot Record (MBR) must be established. FDISK is the MS-DOS utility used to create an MBR by defining the size and nature of a hard drive's partitions. The MBR defines areas of the disk to be:

  • A Primary Partition and/or
  • An Extended Partition

An Extended Partition has to be designated as containing one or more Logical DOS Drives. If you remove partitions, you will destroy everything on them, or, at the least, make it very difficult to recover any data. We’ll learn more about Fdisk in the Recovery programming section of this book.


The FIND command is used to search for a text string in a file or files. After searching the specified files, FIND displays any lines of text that contain the string.


FIND [/V] [/C] [/N] [/I] "string" "filename1" "filename2" "filename ..."


What It Does


Displays all lines NOT containing the specified string.


Displays only a count of lines containing the string. If used with /V, FIND displays a count of the lines that do not contain the specified string.


Displays line numbers with the lines. If /C and /N are used together, /N is ignored.


Ignores the case of characters in string. By default FIND is case sensitive and searches for an exact character match.


The text string to be found. String must be in inverted commas.


The file(s) to be searched. If filename does not contain spaces, it does not need to be enclosed in inverted commas.

If filename is not specified, FIND searches the text input from the standard source which is usually the keyboard, a pipe, or a redirected file. Wildcards are not accepted in filename. Also as inverted commas are used to delimit string, they cannot be used within string as part of the search pattern.

To include inverted commas within string, it is necessary to use the "special character" of double inverted commas ("") which FIND interprets as inverted commas in the search string. Let us see some examples:

To display all lines from the file "NOTES.TXT" that contains the string "homework":

FIND "homework" notes.txt

If the string contains inverted commas, these must be doubled:

FIND "The result of ""B.E. Final year"" has not been displayed." Result.doc


Formats a disk for use with MS-DOS. Always remember that the data stored in the disk will be erased after the format. Be careful and be sure before using the format command and always remember to see which drive letter you are entering in FORMAT command.


FORMAT drive: [/Switches]


                  What It does


Specifies a volume label. If the /V switch is omitted, or label is not specified, a prompt for a volume label is displayed after formatting is completed. If no volume label is required, the prompt can be avoided by specifying: /V:""
If a label is specified and more than one disk is formatted in a session, all of the disks will be given the same volume label.


Forces the Quick format of a previously formatted disk. The file allocation table (FAT) and root directory of the disk is deleted but it is not scanned for bad areas.


Copies system files to the formatted disk to make it a boot disk.


Allocates space on the formatted disk for system files.


Formats a disk to a capacity other than that for which the drive was designed. Size can be: 360, 720, 1.2, 1.44, and 2.88.


Specifies the number of tracks per disk side.


Specifies the number of sectors per track.


Formats a single side of a floppy disk.


Formats a 5.25-inch 360K floppy disk in a high-density drive.


Formats eight sectors per track


Tests clusters that are currently marked "bad." By default, if a disk contains clusters that have been marked as "bad", FORMAT does not retest the clusters; it simply leaves them marked "bad".

By default, and unless the /Q switch is used; each sector on the disk is checked during the formatting process to ensure that the sector can properly store data.

If a bad sector is located, it is marked and is not used. When formatting is complete, a message is displayed showing the total disk space, any space marked as defective, the space used and the space available for files. FORMAT cannot be used on a virtual drive created using the SUBST command.

A fast way to reformat a floppy is:

ren /? | format /q/v:"" > nul

The ren /? part feeds, along with a load of redundant material, an "enter", followed by a "n, enter" in response to FORMAT's prompts. The >nul prevents the display of the somewhat messy mixed up output of the two commands.

Sample Chapters from book DATA RECOVERY WITH AND WITHOUT PROGRAMMING by Author Tarun Tyagi
Data Recovery with & without Programming

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BPB Publications, New Delhi, India
$69.00 (Including Shipping Charges, Cost of Book and Other expenses, Free Source Code CD included with the Book)

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