Backup and re-install - Help please

Discussion in 'Computers' started by JockandRita, Jan 11, 2015.

  1. JockandRita

    JockandRita Funster Life Member

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    Help please. :)

    I have an HP Compaq 320 laptop, which I am having issues with, in the way of programs not responding and everything freezing up for ages at a time. For some time now the laptop has been getting slower and slower, and takes an age to complete the start up process (a few minutes, rather than the seconds it used to take).
    So, I thought I'd do a complete backup to an external HD, and do a clean install using the built in recovery tool/disc. Although I can see the recovery disc in disc management, (7.5Gb out of 15Gb of space available), Windows does not recognise it due to !software being unavailable", and asks me to insert the installation disc and follow instructions from there. :(

    I don't have any installation or repair discs, and never received any from the seller. :cry:

    How can I do a clean install, using the recovery tools/disc already available please?

    Thanks in advance,

    Jock.
     
  2. magicsurfbus

    magicsurfbus Funster

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    What operating system is it? XP, Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8?

    Before opting for OS Armageddon, consider running a complete virus scan, an anti-malware scan (malwarebytes is free) and using a registry cleaner like AML's free one.

    You can also use AML to clear out your temporary files folder and remove unnecessary items from your Startup routine.
     
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  3. BwB

    BwB Funster Life Member

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    Lots of reasons why your computer might be running slow(er) but a format/reinstall will at least get you back to factory clean and may be quicker in the long run (thank tracking down the problem) - providing you have all the install disks for all the other programmes you use.

    To answer your question, I expect the install software you speak of need to be written to a CD or DVD so the computer can boot from that. These files are often called ISO and need a utility to write it to the CD/DVD. Either a stand alone utility or most general CD burners will do the job. Just fire up your CD DVD burning software and choose the ISO file from the recovery partition.

    I guess you may have uninstalled the ISOsoftware it's looking for to do it automatically. But any ISO burner will do.
     
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  4. JockandRita

    JockandRita Funster Life Member

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    Sorry, I should have posted that info earlier. It's Windows 7 Home Premium, running MS Essentials security with daily updates and regular scans, and Crap Cleaner and Malwarebytes now and then.

    Thanks for that BwB. I'm going to have to ponder over that lot, and try to get to grips with it. :eek:

    Cheers,

    Jock.
     
  5. Munchie

    Munchie Funster Life Member

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    Try searching for "recovery"
     
  6. magicsurfbus

    magicsurfbus Funster

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    I'd still say try a registry cleaner before reinstalling the OS. You'd have a lot of driver, software, and e-mail re-installing to do afterwards if you go back to the factory settings. Registry cleaner's worked for me on a number of occasions and I was on bloody bleeding sodding Windows Vista until about a month ago.
     
  7. JockandRita

    JockandRita Funster Life Member

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    That was the first thing I did Ken. Under "disc management" it is clearly identifiable, and the handbook tells me it should all come about after a restart, press Esc, then F11, but no joy. :(
    Yep, will do before anything else.
    Thanks. (y)

    Cheers,

    Jock.
     
  8. Munchie

    Munchie Funster Life Member

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    Don't you just love computers??? Lol
     
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  9. JockandRita

    JockandRita Funster Life Member

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    Yes, in a frustrating sort of way. :LOL:

    Cheers,

    Jock.
     
  10. Puddleduck

    Puddleduck Funster

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    I use system mechanic. It's not free but is reasonably priced and it did it for me.
     
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  11. dna

    dna Funster

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    I think the press "escape" and "F11" refers to when you turn the machine on and before it boots into Windows. There should be a short time where the display is on and displaying some basic information in character form including a message "press escape to enter setup". If you keep pressing escape at that point it should come up with a different HP branded menu which will include an option to recover the hard drive back to factory settings.
    As others have said this is a pretty drastic step as it will completely wipe the disk obliterating everything you have installed since the machine was new.
    Before doing anything I would recommend you install and run a free program called Belarc Advisor and print out the report it produces. This report include the registration keys for all programs (including Windows) which are vital when reinstalling your software.
     
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  12. JockandRita

    JockandRita Funster Life Member

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    Yes, those are the instructions in the Compaq guide for recovering.
    That process wasn't listed in the guide though. Thanks. (y)

    I did download and run Magicsurfbus's recommended registry cleaner, but haven't seen any results after analysing and defragging, so I rebooted, but not noticed any difference yet.

    I'll see how things run over the next couple of days, before I delve any further.

    Thanks to all so far, for their input and help. (y)

    Cheers,

    Jock.
     
  13. JockandRita

    JockandRita Funster Life Member

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    I forgot to say, that does sound a bit daunting for my level of computer skills, ie, if I then had to enter lots of registry keys for the re install. :eek: Not sure I'm up to that without making mistakes. :(

    Cheers,

    Jock.
     
  14. bungy

    bungy Funster

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    Hi jock

    How much memory does your one have and how much spare capacity on the hardrive?
     
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  15. JockandRita

    JockandRita Funster Life Member

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    2Gb memory Darryl, and 156Gb free space, of 280Gb. :)

    Do you want remote access? ;)

    Cheers,

    Jock.
     
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  16. bungy

    bungy Funster

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    Gawd no:eek:
    Loads of stuff it could be...youve done a bunch of things already which are usual suspects, defrag, scans etc and have enough drive space and memory for win7

    Worth checking the memory though with this http://www.memtest86.com...just incase

    Btw...crap cleaner...have you run the registry cleaner in there?
     
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  17. John Laidler

    John Laidler Funster

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    I think dna has identified the way to sort this. If pressing escape during startup doesn't get anywhere, turn off and try pressing f11 about once every second while it is booting up. This could take you to a screen where you have to confirm what keyboard you have, UK, US etc. Select the right one and the thing will restart, let it and then there will be a screen which will offer you a system recovery. This works for some compaq laptops and may for you. It is just a question of working out the initial key presses while it is booting up.

    Alternatively, it may be possible to access the system recovery tool from within windows itself, as described here: http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?cc=uk&lc=en&docname=c01867418

    Check the option called recovery from the desktop, third one down.
     
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  18. JockandRita

    JockandRita Funster Life Member

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    Just a quick question please, before I log off.

    Should I have formatted the new external HD, before backing up my files on to it? :unsure:

    Cheers,

    Jock.
     
  19. JockandRita

    JockandRita Funster Life Member

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    Not today, but will do. :)

    Thanks Daryl.
     
  20. John Laidler

    John Laidler Funster

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    No, assuming the files have been copied across and there were no error messages.

    But did you copy across just important files or do a full backup? If the latter when you restore later you risk returning the laptop back to the state it is in now. My advise would be to copy across your documents, images, music etc. But if you have other software, such as Word, these will need to be manually reinstalled and this will need the original disks and license numbers.
     
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