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Windows 7: What do I need to back up before factory resetting my laptop?

03 Apr 2012   #1
FraserBarclay

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit software
 
 
What do I need to back up before factory resetting my laptop?

Hello

I want to restore my laptop back to it's factory settings. I know how to do this however I want to make sure I don't lose anything in the process.

I have the Operating System Recovery DVD which came with my laptop and I also have a Drivers, Manuals and Utilities DVD which came with the laptop.

I have copied my favourites onto an external HDD.

I have moved all my files (such as music, videos, pictures, word documents etc) onto an external HDD.

I have copied all the installation files for the programs I have onto an external HDD.

Is there anything else I need to do? For example do I need to take a copy of any of the OS files or are they all on the aforementioned DVDs?

Thanks
Fraser


My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Apr 2012   #2
windude99

Windows 7 Professional x64 Service Pack 1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by FraserBarclay View Post
Hello

I want to restore my laptop back to it's factory settings. I know how to do this however I want to make sure I don't lose anything in the process.

I have the Operating System Recovery DVD which came with my laptop and I also have a Drivers, Manuals and Utilities DVD which came with the laptop.

I have copied my favourites onto an external HDD.

I have moved all my files (such as music, videos, pictures, word documents etc) onto an external HDD.

I have copied all the installation files for the programs I have onto an external HDD.

Is there anything else I need to do? For example do I need to take a copy of any of the OS files or are they all on the aforementioned DVDs?

Thanks
Fraser
I reccommend you make a Widnows Easy Transfer file that will keep the data that you had in your programs. It will allow you to restore the program data after you reinstall windows with your programs. Easy transfer doesn't backup your programs, but it does back up the program data. Windows Easy Transfer will also backup your user account, which includes your music, pictures, viseos, downloads, and items on your desktop. To use Windows easy transfer, go to start, then type in easy transfer, then click on Windows Easy Transfer. Once it opens click next. Save the easy transfer on your external hard drive by clicking on "a usb hard disk or flash drive." Then, click "this is my old computer". Then Windows Easy Transfer will scanb for what it can backup. Select what all you want it to back up, then click next. You may enter a password is you want, but you don't have to. After that, click save and save it to your external hard drive.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Apr 2012   #3
FraserBarclay

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit software
 
 

I have created an Easy Transfer File now. Thanks windude99.

Is there anything else I have missed?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Apr 2012   #4
windude99

Windows 7 Professional x64 Service Pack 1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by FraserBarclay View Post
I have created an Easy Transfer File now. Thanks windude99.

Is there anything else I have missed?
No. Your good to go!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Apr 2012   #5
FraserBarclay

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit software
 
 

That's great thanks!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Apr 2012   #6
writhziden

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Warning: Easy Transfer does not back up Windows Live Mail data or some other data in the hidden appdata folder within your user account. Make sure you do not have anything important being saved by your applications in that directory or its subdirectories. Games, Windows Live data, greeting card files, etc. are often saved there.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Apr 2012   #7
FraserBarclay

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit software
 
 

Thanks for bringing that to my attention. I do not have any game data, windows live data or greeting card files. I will have a look at the AppData folder anyway.

*EDIT* - Does the AppData folder hold the settings etc of the programs?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Apr 2012   #8
writhziden

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

I was not entirely clear in my previous post about one thing: What I meant is it does not back those up by default. You can customize it to include that entire directory and its subdirectories. I gave the warning because I know at one point I failed to backup all my old e-mails from Windows Live Mail. Luckily, I had most of them saved on another system, but it was rather a nightmare to lose some since a number of them were important e-mails. Wouldn't want you to go through the same thing, so make sure everything you want is selected through customizing the folders selected by Easy Transfer.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by FraserBarclay View Post

*EDIT* - Does the AppData folder hold the settings etc of the programs?
It may for some programs. For most, that information is stored in Program Files, Program Files (x86), or ProgramData.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Apr 2012   #9
FraserBarclay

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit software
 
 

Does the AppData folder hold the settings etc of the programs?

Are the emails from my Windows Hotmail account saved on my computer?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Apr 2012   #10
writhziden

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

How do you access Hotmail? If it is through Firefox, Internet Explorer, or Google Chrome, that info is saved on the Hotmail servers and can be accessed from any browser from any computer with your username and password to Hotmail.

Google Chrome operates from within appdata/local, so it is one program that saves settings in that area for example.It does not save e-mails, though. Just the sites you have visited and bookmarks.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 What do I need to back up before factory resetting my laptop?




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