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Windows 7: Clean install every year or two?

24 Aug 2010   #21

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by nate42nd View Post
I wonder how many others do a clean install every year or so. It feels good to start clean.
I'm a techie and a systems admin for a living. I start clean on a regular basis and have for as long as I can remember. These days, I often just make an image of the machine right after install, patching and activation. This would be the one that I would restore if I wanted to start over. Since I keep all of my data on a file server at home, and I don't customize much...I honestly don't even take the time to bother troubleshooting signficant problems. I simply just lay my image back down and go on with life.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by marsmimar View Post
This might be a no-brainer type question. Hope you don't mind. My laptop has a manufacturer's recovery partition that let's me restore my machine to a like new condition. Is this type of install as good as a traditional clean install using an installation disk? (Aside from having to remove the manufacturer's crapware that also gets installed.)
Personally, I think this is fine. While technically not as good, I think for "most" people, the results are sufficient enough to restore the box and then uninstall the software that you don't want. I mean if you have the media and the know how...go with a clean load. But don't fret if you don't.

[QUOTE=gregrocker;915569]Not really. The bloatware is corrupting even with its uninstallation, often damaging System Files beyond repair.[/qoute] While I understand the principal here...I'm not sure that I have really ever seen a situation where the bloatware installation caused that big of a problem.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
Any factory utilities will not be useable with the reinstall anyway -Windows 7 has better ones built in - so those partitions can go also.
The downside is the mfg's often put diagnostic utilities and such in these partitions and for the average joe would will call for service or try to get a part covered under warranty, the process becomes more difficult when the likes of Dell/HP/etc cannot do what they want to troubleshoot. And when they find out you put the OS back on the box, they sometimes start to blame you rather than figure out root cause.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Aug 2010   #22
Microsoft MVP


I find that after uninstalling Office Trial version and Norton or MucAfee, there is unfixable System File damage in many cases. This is whether I use Revo or not. It's asymptomatic but bothersome enough for me to do a clean reinstall.

I agree that one needs to be committed to going as clean as possible to test performance potential to avoid using the Recovery partition to clean reinstall. And I would never remove that partition without having made a verified set of Recovery Disks for a path back to factory condition.

However once a clean reinstall is done with Win7 install DVD, is there any point to keeping the factory utility partitions if links are lost to the diagnostics? Wouldn't one just run the Recovery Disks when forced to use Tech Support if they balk at the clean reinstall?

It also is not our fault that manufacturers are training their Tech Support to be hostile to clean reinstalls to force users to keep the Factory bloatware install, out of greed to maintain the bloatware sponsors who provide most of their thin profit margins. Users only want what's best for their investment of hard-earned money.

I think we are straddling the divide here between consumers and tech enthusiasts. If consumers are happy with the factory install, or only want it lightened up a bit with startup editing, CCleaner and defrag, that's probably best. Tech enthusiasts may want to go futher.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Aug 2010   #23
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by nate42nd View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Night Hawk View Post
I shopped around a bit and located a few motherboard testers. You can find some with the 4 digit displays good for both laptops and desktops alike.

To see how one of those looks, PCI Test Card, PC Analyzer, Motherboard Test Card

I didn't pay anywhere that price for a few on EBay however while the one shown there offers a bit more! Once you power up with it in a pci slot you simply look up the code in reference booklet that comes along with it. The code will point to the part of the board like bios to indicate where any fault is found if one is present.
Thanks Night Hawk I didn't know these things existed. Maybe I could use one.
You have to run a search for "motherboard testers" on the Bing search engine to bring you to a few places to look them over. I paid about $5 for one and another $5 for shipping to see that shipped from an overseas vendor. The one at the link or similar with different options is also inviting.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bcltoys View Post
Thanks guys for all the help would any software that you can install from a dvd or cd be bootable so as I could test to see if it does indeed work so as to not open the box of the operating system that I do have ,still want to be able to send back.
Welcome to SF! bcltoys

One way to get past any limitation there if the board suppports booting from usb devices would be to grab a 4gb usb flash drive and follow the guide on creating a usb install key. USB Windows 7 Installation Key Drive - Create

There's a second option to consider as well for seeing a bootable ISO disk image created and running it from a virtual optical drive or an alternate method for creating a bootable flash drive install key. Bootable ISO - Create from Installation Files

Typically these are options for netbook users where no optical drive is present but works well for desktops/laptops too. You can also use the repair tools by simply booting from the flash drive used to see less handling of the original dvd.
My System SpecsSystem Spec


 Clean install every year or two?

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