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Question on Restoring OS with clean Re-Install.


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#1 ComBoz

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Posted 04 June 2010 - 06:25 AM

Hi all,

I am fighting some type of malware/virus and in reading some of the solution threads, I've pretty much decided that it would take me less time and aggravation to simply start fresh. Fortunately, I do not have a lot of programs to re-install and have been somewhat diligent about making sure I have copies of my document and data files stored on an external drive.

I've done a re-install of Windows on my old Dell Laptop almost a half-dozen times, so the fear factor isn't as great...but my desktop is a slightly different animal.

I have an HP Compaq running Windows XP Pro (with a Vista option...but I want to stay with XP). When it arrived two years ago it came with HP Backup and Recovery Manager installed in a partition of the hard drive, and as instructed I also created a Recovery Disk Set immediately. There are four disks in the set:

Supplemental Software HP Backup & Recovery XP-CD
Win XP Pro Service Pack 2
Diagnostics
Intervideo

In addition, the following CD's were included with the system, all with HP branding on the labels:

HP Restore Plus! (start with this DVD for restore)
Operating System CD (Microsoft Windows XP Professional Service Pack 2)
HP Compaq Business PC (Documentation and Diagnostics DVD

I have already ensured that I have copies of my user folders/files saved on the external drive, disconnected from the computer. I have a list of the programs downloaded from the internet that are installed (i.e. antivirus, iTunes, Firefox, etc.) that will need to be re-installed.

So here's my question. If the system has all that is necessary to restore my computer to its condition when I took it out of the box brand new on this separate partition, is it really as simple as launching the Recovery Manager from there to restore the system? Is whatever infected me really going to be gone, or is it possible that it crept into the partition with the recovery programs/files?

If I go the route of using the Recovery Manager, can I assume correctly that I want to perform what HP says is a "destructive recovery" which will format the hard drive, deleting all information and then reinstall Windows XP and original software that came with the computer? (and I'm not sure how this can work if everything is stored in a separate partition of the hard drive...does this 'separate partition' somehow get excluded from the format??)

Or is a destructive recovery the time when my Recovery Disk Set will be needed...will the system prompt me to insert these disks at the proper time to reinstall everything?

I have more questions, but at least want to get this 'method' one answered before it gets too confusing (if it hasn't already!)

Thanks in advance for the help. Mods, if I've posted this in the wrong spot I apologize.

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#2 mattbirk

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Posted 04 June 2010 - 12:48 PM

If you have the reinstall CD for the operating system, you could just boot to the CD. Then, once it is loaded you will get a screen asking you which partition you would like it reinstalled on. Myself, I usually just delete the recovery partition if I have a reinstall disk, but that's just me. On that same screen where you pick where you want to install Windows XP, you can also delete other partitions if you would like. When doing a fresh install, I always just delete all the partitions, then you will only have one option, which says "Unpartitioned Space" (something like that) and you just select that since it is your only option. Deleting the other partions, you just use the arrow keys, select the one you want to delete, hit 'D', then it will prompt you 'Are you sure' etc, and then you have to hit 'L' on the keyboard.

Then, after this step you are given options to format NTFS, NTFS(quick), and possibly FAT. Obviously choose NTFS, (or quick) and you will be on your way installing Windows XP, fresh install. You most likely will have to load the drivers for a lot of the devices, if you your enternet or wifi drivers you can try and use Windows Update to find those drivers.

Hope this helps, maybe see what someone else recommends too...a lot more smarter people around here then me...

Oh and instead of Firefox, you should try out Chrome :thumbsup:

#3 hamluis

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Posted 04 June 2010 - 02:09 PM

HP is responsible for instructions...to purchasers of their products...for explaining how their restore/recovery mechanisms work. I suggest looking up the documentation for your particular system (manual) at their website and reviewing the info offered.

If that fails, then a call or email to HP Support would be my suggestion.

Louis




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