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Windows 7: Windows 7 Repair Install ... expert advice needed

21 Oct 2013   #1

Windows 7 Professional 32-bit
Windows 7 Repair Install ... expert advice needed

I've had severe problems with the icons and taskbar on my Win 7 desktop since I replaced the hard drive a few weeks ago. I've tried various troubleshooting methods (restore points ... sfc scan ... malwarebytes), but nothing has brought things back to full working order. The PC is a couple of years old and had been fine before this.

The problems are so various that I haven't been able to determine if my user accounts are corrupt or the Win7 files are corrupt. As examples, my main account is the only one that ever shows desktop icons. Even the PC's built-in Administrator account never shows any icons on the desktop or taskbar. And the Control Panel never shows any icons, regardless of which user is logged on. All my 8 or 9 installed applications run OK, but none of them show icons or graphics in their help files, only text.

Anyway, I'd like to entirely replace the Win7 on C:, but keep the contents of the D: and E: drives that I set up. When I read about repairs and reinstalls, I'm unsure how much of the hard drive will be erased. I'm also a bit strapped by the fact that the Win7 "copy" that I have was written from the PC back when it was new (pre-SP1 and pre-new-drive). I seem to recall it claims to overwrite everything.

So, what is my best course of action? ... one that leads to a reliable O/S in the fewest steps.

Thanks in advance for any help.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2013   #2

64-bit Windows 10 Pro

Hello Contours,

Please go ahead and post a screenshot showing the full layout of your drives in Disk Management to see what options you may have first.

Disk Management - Post a Screen Capture Image

I'd say you would be better off doing a clean install on C, but let's see what options you have.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2013   #3

Windows 7 Professional 32-bit

Sorry for the delay. Here's the capture.

Attached Thumbnails
Windows 7 Repair Install ... expert advice needed-disk-structure.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec

22 Oct 2013   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bits 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1

Goto folder C:\Program Files and C:\Windows\System32. You see icons in front of some files?
Do you see picture preview images in "picture library"?
Can you display jpg, gif, png files?

win7 boot from "system reserved" (bootmanager and bootmenu)... not related to your problems. "repair install" or "clean install" will only affect Acer (C).

Try Repair Install . It doesn't do anything on D,E,F.
Post if it solved the issue
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Oct 2013   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bits 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1

If even a "repair install" doesn't fix the problem you can try clean install instead. Clean Install Windows 7
In step 8 select the 140GB partition and format it and install win7 in that partition.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Oct 2013   #6


Since you have preinstalled Win7 I would follow the steps to Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7 without the bloatware and duplicate Acer utilities which interfere with better versions built into Win7. Everything needed including the latest official installer for your licensed version is in the blue link.

During the booted Custom install I would delete the PQService, System and C partition using the drive options shown in steps 7 and 8 of Clean Install Windows 7. Then highlight the Unallocated space created to create and format a New partition in the space. Don't touch the data partitions.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Oct 2013   #7

Windows 7 Professional 32-bit

Thanks to each of you. I'm starting my inventory and the downloads. I'm convinced that the advantages of a clean install outweigh the other options ... especially since my Start button occasionally ceases to do anything at all (except blink when clicked).

I'll post my results.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Oct 2013   #8


Good choice.

You will get and keep a perfect Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7 to the exact extent which you stick with only the tools and methods given.

Remember first thing after install to enable Automatically deliver drivers via Windows Update (Step 3) then run all rounds of Important and Optional WIndows Update with reboots, until there are no more when you Check for Updates. Then import any missing drivers in Device Manager from the Acer SUpport Downloads webpage for your model - there shouldn't be more than one or two.

Let us know how it goes.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Oct 2013   #9

Windows 7 Professional 32-bit

For anyone following along, I found this excellent tool for identifying each and every module that's been installed since the PC's startup (sort on Installation Date). The best feature is an html file that exactly documents the "before" state of the PC's software. A good overview, of course, is provided by the recommended Belarc Advisor.

MyUninstaller: Alternative uninstaller to the standard Windows Add / Remove module
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Windows 7 Repair Install ... expert advice needed

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