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XP - Wiping HDD and re-installing operating system


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#1
egobirchy

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Hi,

I've had virus problems and as a result am thinking that life might be easier if I just wipe my C drive and start again from scratch. Obviously there's issues about backing up important data which need to be considered.

The question I'm asking is whether there's any danger to the contents of my additional (F:) drive if I do a full 'System Recovery'?

My plan is to move my needed data and files from the C: Drive where the operating system is..over to the F:Drive..then wipe C:Drive and re-install XP there (on C: again).

Another issue I forsee is that by performing the System Recovery...will the computer think its back to its original factory setup? If so, how do I tell it that there is in fact an additional HDD, and additional RAM (which I installed after purchase.)

Any help greatly appreciated. If I can get to the bottom of these issues - I might save one of the experts time on the HiJackThis thread!

Thanks :tazz:

Rich

Edited by egobirchy, 10 January 2006 - 05:20 AM.

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#2
Fenor

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Hi egobirchy!

You should have no problems doing a System Recovery. The recovery disk you have will install windows back on your hard drive that is labeled C:, which is the drive windows is on now. Your other hard drive will not be touched. If you want to be cautious though, you can open the side panel on your case and disconnect the power connector to your second hard drive while you do the system recovery (Of course doing this while the power is off :tazz: ), and then after the recovery is complete you can power down your system and re-connect the power connector to your second hard drive and then turn the computer back on and Windows will detect it and all the files will still be on it.

Your RAM will be fine since installing windows does nothing to this since RAM is hardware and cannot be deleted/modified.

Fenor

Edited by Fenor, 10 January 2006 - 08:37 AM.

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#3
egobirchy

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Thanks Fenor, much appreciated reassurance. :tazz:

Am I right in thinking that the System Restore should also fully wipe the C: Drive and (hopefully) any virus traces with it?
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#4
Fenor

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Most of the time doing a reformat (which is what you will do when doing the System Recovery) wipes all traces of viruses away, but there are some viruses that can hang around even after a format. Best thing to do is when you are using the Recovery Disk, if you are given the option of doing a normal or quick format, choose the normal format since it does a more thorough job of wiping the hard drive of everything that is on it.

One thing you want to keep in mind though is that some Recovery Disks give you the option of doing a Non-Destructive recovery, which is NOT what you want to do here. Make sure you get the warning telling you that everything on the hard drive will be lost when the drive is formatted.

Fenor

Edited by Fenor, 10 January 2006 - 08:44 AM.

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#5
egobirchy

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Thanks again! Your advice is appreciated.

Fully destructive, blitz option it is then :tazz:

Actually the prospect of a full 'spring clean' is quite nice. Starting all over again.
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#6
Fenor

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Yes, it is good to start fresh once in awhile since even a fully healthy computer, with no viruses/spyware/etc... on it, can begin to act wierd after awhile.

Good luck with the Recovery and if you have any other problems/questions/concerns before, during and after the recovery is complete, don't hesitate to come back here for guidance.

Fenor
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#7
egobirchy

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Sorted. Disk wiped. Virus gone...I'm now in that happy place where full boot takes 25 secs, just getting all the Windows updates and putting up my defences ready for another year's onslaught on the internet.

Anyone else reading this - I fully recommend a disk wipe..its like turning over a new leaf, and its amazing how much cr@p you accumulate and forget about. I'm going to be about 20Gb lighter by just reinstalling things that I need.

Thanks for the help

Edited by egobirchy, 10 January 2006 - 01:49 PM.

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