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Back up all your Stuff First
You should already be doing this, but, if you haven't here is some stuff you may want to backup. For those of you that only have the 3 1/2 floppy disks, try to back up as much as you can on those, I burn mine to a to a Cd-R, DVD, and now an 8 gig USB drive.
Look in the Add/Remove Utility ( Screen
) for Software you have Installed.
- Make sure you have all the Disks and try to save all the downloaded .Zip update files to the Programs and Drivers on your Computer.
Favorites, all your Internet Links ( Book Marks or Favorites ), your going to want them after you reinstall and update Internet Explorer.
- Go to Start-Find and type in, favorites, there will be a folder with a star on it next to the file name, this is what you should find * screen shot * after you find it Copy and past it onto a storage medium.
Address Book, all your Email addresses.
- Go to Start-Find, type in WAB or .WAB, under Type of file it should say Address Book, this is a * screen shot * of what you should find. Double click on it to make sure all your email addresses are in there. Copy and paste it ( if you are not sure how to Copy and Paste go here Windows Tips ) to the storage medium.
Your Word Processor files
- Look in the File-Save window in the program, to see where they are being saved to.
Banking or checking account programs.
- Driver updates, software updates and any free software you want to reinstall, you can go
back to the site and download it again, but it saves a lot of time, if you can install them from your Harddrive.
Pictures, Music, Cards you made, Windows Wallpaper you installed, Screen Savers.
- If you got really far in a game, but haven't beat it yet, save the saved games folder.
- And any others you can think of that may be hard to replace.
Reformatting bye bye to all info on the Disk !!!
Start Up Disk
If you haven't done this yet, Go to Start-Control Panel-Add/Remove/Startup Tab * Screen Shot
* use a new disk or a reformatted disk and create a Windows Startup Disk. You will need this to Boot up and use Fdisk to reformat and install Windows 98.
Getting close to that scary moment, it still makes me nervous, Ok, this can take you a weekend to a week, depending on how many installs and updates are involved, depends on if you have them on disks or you have to redownload them from the net, if from the net with a phone modem, every night for a week. Excited ( : it's not all that bad, actually, for me it's fun, I love downloading free stuff, to bad you couldn't download free updates for your car, stove, refrig ( :
Have all your Driver disks for cards or hardware you have installed, if you have the same system you bought and
have a Restore Disk this will be a cake walk. For those of us that love to power it up a little, have the disks
at hand. If you only have a Restore Disk and you have add new cards or hardware, especially the CD-ROM you may
have to reinstall at least the old CD-ROM in order to use the restore disk. The Restore Disk is an Image of what
was on and in the Computer at the Factory, that means if it had brand A CD-ROM in it and you installed brand B
the faster one, the Restore Disk want recognize brand B, because it wasn't in there when they Imaged the drive
at the factory. So in order for the Restore Disk to recognize the CD-ROM it has to be brand A. The other stuff
you will probably get errors on, but you can correct them, generally, in the Device Manager later, after the install
is done or just pull them out before you install and reinstall them after.If you got a Windows Disk along with
the Restore Disk, I would just us the Windows Disk, it will recognize all the new stuff. But there maybe a program
on the Restore Disk you like, your call. ( :
People using the Restore Disk
Check your Computer Manual before you do this, each Manufacture may have, specific instructions concerning your particular system. Generally speaking,you put the disk in the CD-ROM and the 3 1/3 floppy if required, check your manual, reboot the Computer and follow the instructions, you still have to click that scary button, are you sure, you want to delete the information on this drive, if yes, click this button and say bye bye info.
Reformatting for Windows Install
Put your Startup disk in the A drive and reboot, your Bios must be set to check the A: drive first.
You get a black Screen that says
- 1.Start with CD-ROM support
- 2.Without CD-ROM Support
- 3.Command prompt or something.
Pick the, Without Cd-Rom support, it will go to the A: prompt.
- Type in= A: fdisk ( Here are some Screen Shots of the following steps.)
- Do you want to enable large disk support, y or n - if you are installing Windows
98 yes, 95 you need to check on what Version you have, the latest version supports it.
- Fdisk Options, choose, 3. Delete partition or logical DOS drive.
- Choose, 1.Delete primary DOS partition,
now the scary part, it will ask you to confirm what drive and asks you again if you want to delete the drive, once
you say yes, bye bye info, I always hesitate, wondering if I remembered to backup everything.
- Next at the Main screen choose Create a Primary DOS partition
, make the whole drive a Dos partition, it will tell you, you need to reboot for changes to take effect and to Format the drive.
- Go back to the A: prompt and type in, format c: this will format Drive C, when done reboot.
- This time when you get to that first black screen, choose, Restart 1. with CD support, put the Windows CD Disk in, at the A: type setup or setup.exe after Scandisk is finished hit the X key on your key board and Windows will start to install.
- Have your Windows Key ready, it will be on the CDs Jewel case or Windows Manual.
- Windows should detect everything, but may ask you for Driver Disks, if you do not have it, you will need to go into the Device Manager and update the driver after Windows installs, just choose skip or cancel that Driver install.
- This is in your Windows Manual so be sure to refer to that for the complete steps and check the other links
Well that is a Reformat and Reinstall of Windows. To Reformat XP go Here.
Here are a couple of useful fdisk commands:
1. To transfer the System Files from the Startup Disk in the A: drive, restart with the
Startup disk, at the A: prompt type sys a:\ c:
2. To overwrite the MBR using fdisk, fdisk /mbr
checkout this MS doc on using this command FDISK /MBR Rewrites the Master Boot Record
If you are going to do this, read your Computer Manual and Windows Manual first, look up and find more information about doing this. Do NOT follow these instruction only, they are for informational purposes only and are not intended to be a guide for Reformatting and Installing. You can lose all the data on your Harddrive by doing this, so be 100% certain, that you have all the information you need about your particular System and feel confident about doing this.
DISCLAIMER: if you are going to do this, read your Computer Manual and Windows Manual first, look up and find more information about doing this. Do not follow these instruction only, they are for informational purposes only and are not intended to be a guide for Reformatting and Installing. You can lose all the data on your Harddrive by doing this, so be 100% certain, that you have all the information you need about your particular System and feel confident about doing this.
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