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Why can't I keep my installed programs


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#1 bigalexe

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Posted 15 May 2011 - 04:36 PM

Ok this is a question I get when working on computers and the only recourse is an Operating System reinstall or in the case where I am advising someone on a heavy upgrade/new purchase. Me personally I don't really care why, I just need something simple to tell people when they ask me besides saying "Well you can't!"

Why is it that when you reinstall Windows 7 or move from Windows XP (98,95 etc.) to Windows 7 (Vista, ya lets not go there) there is no way to keep your programs installed?

Edited by hamluis, 15 May 2011 - 06:05 PM.
Moved from System Upgrading to Win 7.

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#2 hamluis

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Posted 15 May 2011 - 06:04 PM

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_vista-windows_install/no-repair-install-option-sad/81244a7c-487b-438b-9080-2ced9a4addd4

http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/3413-repair-install.html

Louis

Edited by hamluis, 15 May 2011 - 06:04 PM.


#3 bigalexe

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Posted 16 May 2011 - 02:20 PM

Neither of those answered my question. I want to be able to explain to someone why they cannot do an in-place upgrade from XP.

I understand how to do an in-place or repair install and have done so when possible more than once. The problem comes up for example when I am dealing with a Mac user that thinks they should be able to take their old Windows hard drive (they have 2 PC's) and plug it into a new computer and keep all their programs as-is.
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#4 Allan

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Posted 16 May 2011 - 02:28 PM

You've described several scenarios and each has a different answer. What is the SPECIFIC question you want to ask (no back story please - just the question). Thank you.

#5 Jacee

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Posted 16 May 2011 - 02:40 PM

Maybe you could gather a quick answer from here http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd446674(WS.10).aspx

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#6 bigalexe

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Posted 17 May 2011 - 10:29 AM

Ok lets consider this as a simple single program situation in a few different scenarios. I think it's probably my description of the issue that is confusing.

Scenario 1:
Let's say you encounter a new install of Windows 7, and the system has AutoCAD installed. The user in their infinite wisdom loves email forwards and made their computer into an expensive doorstop with a virus. Now you have to do a OS Reinstall because the infection is so bad you can't get into it do any anti-virus work. (True Story)

User to me... Why can't you just carry the AutoCAD install over to the new system?

Scenario 2:
A Mac user has you working on their Windows PC and it has been determined a new system is in order. They are currently running Windows XP on an Intel Platform and are looking at a new system with an AMD Platform (along with DDR2 to DDR3 RAM, new video hardware, everything). They think they should be able to just take the old hard drive, plug it into the new system. (True Story)

User to me... But every time I reinstalled the OS on my iMac it kept my installed programs?

***Yes I would read the tech stuff on Microsoft but I am not sure exactly what I am looking for and I need a quick concise answer. I've never really worried about the "why" portion and just accepted that a new OS install means reinstalling your programs. My level of tech expertise is that I can build systems, do quite a bit of diagnosis/repair/maintenance and have killed viruses successfully when I got there in time. I am not educated in tech support though and never dug into the real guts of the OS because I have never found it necessary. I am not a professional tech support guy I just help out my friends who know less than me.
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#7 Allan

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Posted 17 May 2011 - 10:35 AM

Ok lets consider this as a simple single program situation in a few different scenarios. I think it's probably my description of the issue that is confusing.

Scenario 1:
Let's say you encounter a new install of Windows 7, and the system has AutoCAD installed. The user in their infinite wisdom loves email forwards and made their computer into an expensive doorstop with a virus. Now you have to do a OS Reinstall because the infection is so bad you can't get into it do any anti-virus work. (True Story)

User to me... Why can't you just carry the AutoCAD install over to the new system?

Because you are formatting the drive. That erases everything and all programs need to be reinstalled.



Scenario 2:
A Mac user has you working on their Windows PC and it has been determined a new system is in order. They are currently running Windows XP on an Intel Platform and are looking at a new system with an AMD Platform (along with DDR2 to DDR3 RAM, new video hardware, everything). They think they should be able to just take the old hard drive, plug it into the new system. (True Story)

User to me... But every time I reinstalled the OS on my iMac it kept my installed programs?

Because when Windows installs it makes note of all of the hardware on the system. If some of that hardware changes (certain configurations) OR if you try to use that hd in a system with different hardware, the OS will recognize it is a different system and will not boot. This is by design. HOWEVER, if you CAN get the system to boot (ie, identical hardware) then the entire installation will be intact - including installed programs. You may wish to note that Acronis True Image now offers an option to restore a disk image to a system with different hardware.


***Yes I would read the tech stuff on Microsoft but I am not sure exactly what I am looking for and I need a quick concise answer. I've never really worried about the "why" portion and just accepted that a new OS install means reinstalling your programs. My level of tech expertise is that I can build systems, do quite a bit of diagnosis/repair/maintenance and have killed viruses successfully when I got there in time. I am not educated in tech support though and never dug into the real guts of the OS because I have never found it necessary. I am not a professional tech support guy I just help out my friends who know less than me.


Edited by Allan, 17 May 2011 - 10:37 AM.


#8 bigalexe

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Posted 17 May 2011 - 08:22 PM

Thank you, that's what I was looking for.

Here's the dumb part... I knew the answer and just couldn't come up with it. Some things I just get aggravated about because people refuse to accept that "That's the way it is!" and so it kind of blocks out the logical thinking portion of the brain... but that's another discussion all together and not completely under the domain of a computer forum, at least until we develop AI.
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#9 TechSafer

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Posted 18 May 2011 - 08:24 AM

Just tell your customers that their PC's are so messed up that it is the only option.

Hope this helps.

Louis :)

#10 AstroIROC

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 04:00 PM

Here is what I tell my customers. All the installed programs need to be installed using an install disc because when you do, that process puts a lot of different files that the program needs to run in different file folders on your hard drive. When you just copy a file folder to a hard drive to another hard drive it doesent put all those files in the proper places that the program needs to use them to run from. so the program won't run. the program has to be installed from an install disc or all the files that it needs to run will not be installed where they need to be. Hope that is an explanation you can use!! Good Luck
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#11 Allan

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 04:16 PM

Here is what I tell my customers. All the installed programs need to be installed using an install disc because when you do, that process puts a lot of different files that the program needs to run in different file folders on your hard drive. When you just copy a file folder to a hard drive to another hard drive it doesent put all those files in the proper places that the program needs to use them to run from. so the program won't run. the program has to be installed from an install disc or all the files that it needs to run will not be installed where they need to be. Hope that is an explanation you can use!! Good Luck


Actually it's the registry entries that are the issue. You can copy the program files and folders, but many apps add literally hundreds of entries in the registry.

#12 AstroIROC

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 04:53 PM

Yep that's correct, But then the customer wants to know what is the registry. So using that explanation even though it may not be technicly correct, explains it enough to a novice that they understand and don't continue to ask questions!!!
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#13 Allan

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 04:58 PM

yeah, okay.




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