Questions about deleting Windows XP system files

I know that when formatting the C drive from within the Windows command prompt, you get an error message, however would it format it successfully if you were to boot into the command prompt version of Windows XP and type the same command?

Also, I know that typing "del c:\/f /s /q" can delete all the system files, destroying your OS, but what if you were to type a variant such as "rd c:\/f /s /q" or "rd c:\ /f /s /q"? In addition, will it do the action if logged in as a limited user, or does the user then get an "access denied" error message?

Please help me on this. How can I refrain from performing the actions in reality?


Windows Forum Team
Staff member
Premium Supporter
You cannot format the system drive from within windows (full stop) because windows doesn’t allow that command to run for obvious reasons.
The standard work around is to boot into some kind of shell i.e Acronis, Linux or even a modern windows install disc then run the format command from there.

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