error 0x80070057 Failed to format the selected partition RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi all.  I am trying to reinstall vista home premium 32 bit back onto my hard drive which has been wiped.  i get to the where do you want to install windows to screen, pick the only option which is disk0 partition 1 primary and formatted it, then tried to install when i got the error 0x80070057 Failed to format the selected partition.  can someone pls help me get vista back on my computer asap!!!
    Monday, March 22, 2010 5:41 AM

All replies

  • #  Try renaming the SoftwareDistribution folder:

    Click Start, Choose Run.

    In the Run box, type: services.msc

    Click OK.

    Right-click the Automatic Updates service.

    Click Stop.

    Stopping the service will take a moment.

    Now rename the "SoftwareDistribution" folder:

    a) Click Start, click Run, type


    ...and then click OK.

    b) Right-click the SoftwareDistribution folder, and then click Rename.

    c) Type SoftwareDistribution.old and then press ENTER to rename this folder.

    Now click Start, and choose Run.

    In the Run box, type: services.msc

    Click OK.

    Right-click the Automatic Updates service.

    Click Start.

    Starting the service will take a moment.

    Now Try WU website again

    Thursday, June 10, 2010 6:41 AM
  • I had this problem earlier today.


    The disk, even after formatting in Linux, simply wouldn't install into Win Vista.

    Here are some things you can try, which might fix it. (I realize this is an old post from March, however it's one of the top results on Google, so I might put a helpful answer right?)

    I'm willing to bet there's an easier fix to this problem, I just haven't found it.

    Only do this if you are doing a complete clean/fresh install! Your drive will be completely cleared and no files will be on the hard drive.


    1.) Plug it into another computer and format it with DiskPart.

    a. Open Diskpart

    Open CMD (Vista/7: Start Orb -> type in "CMD" -> Enter) (XP: Start -> Run -> type in "CMD" -> Enter/Press Ok)

    Type in:


    It may take some time for it to pop up and it will ask you for Administrative privileges. Go ahead and click Yes.

    b. Type in:

    list disk

    It'll show a list of disks.

    e.g: http://img411.imageshack.us/img411/6880/diskpart01.png

    c. Select the drive you're having issues with.

    Do this with the diskpart "select" command. Select your disk out of the list above.


    select disk 3

    d. Clean the drive.

    Type in:


    e. Create a partition.

    Type in:

    create partition primary 

    f. Select the partition.

    Type in:

    select partition 1 

    g. Activate the partition on the disk.

    Type in:


    h. Do a full format into NTFS.

    Type in:

    format fs=ntfs

    It will take some time to complete. Anywhere from 30 minutes up to several hours, depending on the size of the disk.


    If you get an error saying something along the lines of it not being able to access the disk, then skip to step 4.


    2.) Check your installation media (The Vista DVD).

    If it has any scratches on it, it can cause some problems during the installation. If you can, burn off another copy.

    Try and install Vista again.


    3.) Might be a good idea to try a hard drive diagnostic test.

    Find out the brand of hard drive you have and get their diagnostic program off their website and run a "Full Media Scan" or "Full Test".

    Western Digital: http://support.wdc.com/product/download.asp?wdc_lang=en

    Seagate: http://www.seagate.com/ww/v/index.jsp?locale=en-US&name=SeaTools&vgnextoid=720bd20cacdec010VgnVCM100000dd04090aRCRD

    Google the manufacturer name or model number and "Hard drive Diagnostic" to get the program you need. You may need to burn an iso file to a disk.*

    If it fails, you need a new hard drive. Either go online and search around or go to your local computer shop! You'll find they can be very helpful.

    If it passes, continue to Step 4.


    4.) Write zeros to drive.

    As it's different for every hard drive manufacturer on how to do this, Google the manufacturer name or model number and "Write zeros to drive".

    Once this is done, reformat it like in Step 1 then try and install Vista again.



    *A good program for this is ImgBurn. ImgBurn is free.

    ImgBurn: http://www.imgburn.com/



    Good luck!

    • Proposed as answer by TheAcen Friday, August 13, 2010 10:58 PM
    • Edited by TheAcen Friday, August 13, 2010 11:02 PM Formatting
    Friday, August 13, 2010 10:52 PM
  • thanks TheAcen, your post made me happy as I could fix the 'disk read error' and windows 7 didn't want to install on the IDE disk I have. After going through the diskpart commands I could format the drive and windows 7 installed with not problems.


    thanks again buddy, great stuff.

    I had to add up that there was not need to plug the IDE disk to another computer as windows 7 installation has a way to get a DOS window and do the diskpart commands.
    • Edited by rocketero Wednesday, September 7, 2011 12:16 PM
    Wednesday, September 7, 2011 12:14 PM