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Windows 7: How can I get rid of all traces of a netbook's previous owner?

17 Oct 2011   #1

Windows 7 Srarter 32bit
 
 
How can I get rid of all traces of a netbook's previous owner?

I bought a used Samsung N-150 netbook with Windows 7 Starter. The previous owner deleted his user account, but. left the files associated with it. I will be the only user and do not want to be annoyed by having to log out as a user in order to log in as administrator. The only account I want on the machine is the administrator account.

So far, everything I try to set-up or save defaults to the left-over file structure under the previous owner's user's name.

After numerous searches for a way to get rid of all files associated with this guy, I am about ready to re-format the drive, then re-install the operating system from the recovery partition.

Is there an easier way to get this guy out of the computer?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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17 Oct 2011   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate 64Bit
 
 

Personally. I would restore it as you suggest. It won`t take long and you`ll be better off.
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17 Oct 2011   #3

Windows 7 Professional SP1 32-bit
 
 

I agree.
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17 Oct 2011   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

You can skip the format and just restore from the hidden partition. It'll wipe everything on the C drive. If you have another partition, after the restore is done you can just format the extra partition.
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17 Oct 2011   #5
Microsoft MVP

 

If you want the cleanest reinstall without the factory preinstalled bloatware and useless utilities which have better versions built into Windows 7, find a Windows 7 installation ISO and burn to DVD or bootable flashstick (which you need for repairs anyway).

All the steps are here: Reinstalling Windows 7
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17 Oct 2011   #6

Windows 7 Srarter 32bit
 
 

Gregrocker, I will follow your link after I finish typing this...

Per the help file/instructions on the home screen, I found out how to use the recovery console to restore the netbook to factory settings. It resolved to the previous owners log in screen. The only thing I can do now is enter the guy's password or use shutdown options. I don't know his password, and since it took him several days to respond to his Craigslist listing, I don't expect him to call me back right away.

I called Samsung and they had me do the F4 restore a couple of times. I even tried re-sizing partitions. No matter what I try it keeps taking me back to the previous owner's log in screen. All the Samsung support guy could tell me is it does that sometimes. Samsung is sending me a disk, but the Support guy told me I will have to download drivers from their website.

About the only thing I can think of doing right now is to search for a utility I can put on a USB drive to format Drive C, then use the F4 recovery console to restore Windows 7.

I'm open to options.

P.S. I have bandaids on both thumbs, and am using the one finger method to type on an iPad, so please forgive my typing and spelling errors.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Oct 2011   #7
Microsoft MVP

 

When you boot the Windows 7 installer to clean reinstall, or most Recovery Disks to run Factory Recovery, there is no prompt for password and you start fresh with a new Computer Name/Owner/Admin account.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Oct 2011   #8

Windows 7 Srarter 32bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
When you boot the Windows 7 installer to clean reinstall, or most Recovery Disks to run Factory Recovery, there is no prompt for password and you start fresh with a new Computer Name/Owner/Admin account.
I understand what you are saying, but like I said, the Samsung tech guy told me their recovery program does not always do a clean install like it is supposed to. He gave me two options. I could send the computer back to them and for a fee and they would restore it to a clean install. Or they will send me a disk for free. I chose the second option.

If I can find a way to format Drive C:, and the recovery program didn't work, I don't think I'd be any worse off than I am now.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Oct 2011   #9
TJG

Windows 7 Home Premium 32bits
 
 

Unless the previous owner changed the factory image.

TJG
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18 Oct 2011   #10

Windows 7 Srarter 32bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by TJG View Post
Unless the previous owner changed the factory image.

TJG
Could you explain what you mean? This is my first experience with Windows 7.

I bought the netbook from an individual who said he bought it from Costco about a year ago. He said he did not have it long before he replaced it with a laptop (because he said the netbook was too slow and it's screen was too small). Except for marks on the screen where it contacts a few keys when closed, it looks brand new.

I bought it because I looked at a couple of high-end fully ruggedized daylight enabled tablets and was. Very disapoonted that I could not see their screens in full sunlight.

The Samsung N-150 is one of the more recent netbooks that is on the Pixel Qi screen compatibility list. (You would think that if they wanted to create more demand for their screens, their compatibility list would include the most up to date hardware... Before I even think about changing the screen though,, I need to install and test a 30 day demo copy of the Industry specific software I want to use. (The minimum system requirements for the software call for a latger screen and Windows 7 home premium, so who knows...)
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 How can I get rid of all traces of a netbook's previous owner?




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