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Difference between formatting and zero filling?


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Answered 2006-12-11 18:54:53

Formatting a disk just replaces the beginning of track marks and initializes the FAT. Zero filling overwrites everything and makes it almost impossible to recover data even with more sophisticated equipment. When you format the disk, all of the old data is still there, it's just not readily accessable since the FAT does not "point" to the disk location any longer. You could still perform a disk "absolute address" read and extract the data.

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