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Preinstalled Windows - No Disk


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#1 setasdefault

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 11:38 AM

Hello, I want to reformat my hard drive and reinstall my Windows Xp Home Edition Operating System. I know that this can be accomplished by using the recovery partition on the hard drive, or by using the recovery CDs. However these options will restore the PC to its factory shipped condition, and the computer will have all kinds of software and trial offers that I don't want, or can't use. How can I install the Windows operating system only, and not include this software with it? I don't have a bootable Windows disk because the PC came with Windows preinstalled. I'm pretty sure there is a directory called I386 on the hard drive, which contains an image of the Operating System disk. I would appreciate any help on this issue. Thanks.

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#2 usasma

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 05:55 PM

Most of this depends on the make and model of your system - as certain copies of the OS are locked to the make of the system (like Dell).

But, in the easiest vein - why not reset it to factory default - then uninstall all the crap that you don't need?
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#3 setasdefault

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 08:35 PM

True, guess I'll just do that then, thanks. BTW, wouldn't it only cost like 20 cents for M$ to make a backup CD for thier preinstalled systems? :thumbsup:

#4 no one

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Posted 13 May 2006 - 09:20 PM

Hay there
I don't use xp , but there should be a way to make a full backup
(DVD rw would be handy) to CD or DVD as a Disk Image or what not
that would restore it to exactly the way you want it. may cost you some
weird looking(still don't like the new bills) green stuff though.
Being a 98 user I would like to here about it if you find something,
more so if it's something free. :thumbsup:
a starting point could be
http://www.dozleng.com/updates/index.php?a...&CODE=02&cat=66

"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts."

"Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster"

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#5 ThorXP

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 12:07 AM

What is the make and model of your computer? There usually is a way to make a recovery disk from the recovery partition that is on your system. Some computers like some of the HP's do not allow you to do that but HP just lost a suit about that and have to provide recovery disks.

Actually all you have to do is read the manual that came with your computer and it will tell you how or if you can do this.

Oh one other thing, Take that .20 cents and multiply it times the number of computers the company builds and you will see how much they save making it inconvienent for us.

#6 setasdefault

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 07:16 AM

Hmmm. Thanks for you helpful sugestions, but I think that usama is right, I will have to use the partition on the drive. However I read this article that I will quote. "There are circumstances where you may have a legal installation of Windows XP...The scenario that seems most common is a manufacturer that pre-installs Windows XP for you, and then does not give you a CD to go with it...Hopefully what that manufacturer has done is copy the Windows XP CD-ROM image to your hard disk...search for a folder named I386...The I386 directory is typically one of the top-level directories on the distribution CD-ROM, but most importantly, it is the directory that contains the distributed copy of Windows XP. Winnt.exe and winnt32.exe are the DOS and protected mode setup programs, respectively"
Does this mean I can make a bootable install disk of it? It's not an ISO.

#7 usasma

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 08:22 AM

You can make a bootable CD - but not just using the i386 folder. For example, my installation CD's have i386 folders on them - but there's also boot info on the CD that affects how it starts up.

You can probably research this and find ways around it - but add to this your desire to eliminate the "garbage" off of the install and you're in for a lot of work!
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#8 HitSquad

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 08:51 AM

However these options will restore the PC to its factory shipped condition, and the computer will have all kinds of software and trial offers that I don't want, or can't use. How can I install the Windows operating system only, and not include this software with it?

That's not always the case.
The restore partition on most OEM's is usually not much more then the OS itself + maybe a little garbage.
If you visit the OEM's website, what gets restored and what doesn't is very often listed.
If your system came with MS Office, works, or any other such programs that would normally require seperate licenses, be aware you will lose them in a factory restore.

Edited by HitSquad, 14 May 2006 - 08:55 AM.


#9 setasdefault

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 10:41 AM

Yes, I think I will just do a normal restore and uninstall the stuff I don't want. Thanks for all you posts. :thumbsup:

#10 The Shadow

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 02:02 PM

My first question would be "why are you doing this thing?"

If you want to do an Unattended RE-Install of windows, you do need the i386 folder (somewhere on your HD) that contains all the .cab files and the "Winnt32.exe" file.

If you have such a folder, you can try this:
***********************************
Re-Installing Windows-XP
If you need to reinstall Windows-XP and want to keep all your current installed applications and settings:
1. Start Windows-XP
2. Find the location of your source files (a folder called "I386" , May Be on Your Install CD or a folder on your HD) You may find several i386 folders on your PC but you want the one that has the .cab files in it along with the command file "Winnt32.exe".
3. Run WINNT32 /unattend ,,, For example, D:\I386\winnt32.exe /unattend (type this command into the RUN box, then press ENTER).... Leave just one space at the end of the command and before the switch (/unattend). Without the space there, the command will FAIL.
I've often needed to do this to repair something that had gotten corrupted and I didn't want to do a clean install.

***********************************

I've very successfully done this in the past when some (or several) windows functions like Search or System Restore failed to work right.

Good Luck,
The Shadow :thumbsup:

HI Usasma!
For those wanting, or needing the Norton Removal Tool,
it's latest version is available Here:
http://service1.symantec.com/SUPPORT/tsgen...005033108162039

"The only bad backup is the one you decided NOT to make" Annonymous

#11 setasdefault

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 07:05 PM

Wow you guys certainly gave me alot of suggestions. I wasn't expecting so many. It's not a serious pressing issue or anything, So I don't want to waste any more of your time.




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