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Windows 7: Repair Install

08 Apr 2016   #2020
Brink

64-bit Windows 10 Pro
 
 

Hello RP,

What's your question?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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09 Apr 2016   #2021
RP McIntosh

Windows 7 Ultimate 64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Brink View Post
Hello RP,

What's your question?
Thanks for replying. First, my apologies. I looked (mistakenly) at the Join Date, and thought that the last post was in 2008. Clearly not.

As to my questions, I need to first explain what my situation is. I have a Dell Computer, purchased in 2010 with Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit. Recently, my main hard drive failed. So I went and bought a new one, then in ignorance, simply restored a recent Acronis Image file of the C drive to the new hard drive. System wouldn't boot. Will try to keep this reasonably short. After a lot of trying different things, I reinstalled Windows from the Dell OS DVD that came with the system. Then, restored the Acronis image on top of that. With a repair of the boot process from the Windows 7 installation disk, I was up and running again, and thought that all was well. Then, little by little, I discovered three problems.
1. IE 11 would not let me download files. After some exploration, I discovered that it's cache was gone--nothing in the Temp Int Files folder. And though it ran, it was (not surprisingly) very slow. So I downloaded and installed Chrome, and it is working fine.
2. A couple of hours after getting everything running again I got a pop up telling me that my installation of Windows was not genuine. Went through a several day process of trying to resolve that to no avail. Can give more detailed info if it is useful.
3. Also discovered that Windows Update would not work. Click on the Check for Updates button, and nothing happens. Spent a lot of time exploring other avenues of getting updates. During that process, I got a suggestion to resolve all three problems by doing a Repair Install, which led me to your tutorial.

Now for the questions. When I got the computer, I got with it two apparently identical DVDs labeled Operating System, Reinstallation DVD, Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit. Of course, at that time, SP1 had not yet been issued, so the DVD does not include SPI. However, of course, when it came out, I did update to SP1. So I now have SP1 running on the system, and a reinstallation DVD that does NOT include SPi. So first question. Can I use the DVD provided by Dell to do a Repair Install? Second question. I noted in your tutorial that there are downloads of Windows 7 SP1 available to create a disk as an ISO file. Assuming that I need to have an SPI installation disk to do the Repair Install, and I used one of the downloaded ISO files to make an installation disk, am I correct in assuming that the Product Key found on the computer would not work to install from the ISO disk? Finally, assuming that the answer to either of the two previous questions are positive, would I still have the "Windows is Not Genuine" problem after doing the Repair Install?

I know that this is long, and I tried to keep it as short as possible, but I will be happy to provide any additional info that you feel would be helpful. Thank in advance for your assistance.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Apr 2016   #2022
Brink

64-bit Windows 10 Pro
 
 

RP,

It sounds like you have OEM factory recovery discs. If so, they cannot be used to do a repair install with. You can only use retail installation media that is the same version as what you currently have which is about impossible now.

You may be better off doing a clean install instead.

Your product key should be on the COA sticker on your OEM PC.

Product Key Number for Windows 7 - Find and See
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Apr 2016   #2023
RP McIntosh

Windows 7 Ultimate 64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Brink View Post
RP,

It sounds like you have OEM factory recovery discs. If so, they cannot be used to do a repair install with. You can only use retail installation media that is the same version as what you currently have which is about impossible now.

You may be better off doing a clean install instead.

Your product key should be on the COA sticker on your OEM PC.

Product Key Number for Windows 7 - Find and See
Thanks. Truth is, I'm not sure what I have. When I was having trouble booting after restoring my image file, I did put the Windows DVD in the drive, and booted with it. It gave me an option to either Install, or to Repair. When Repair did not work, I chose Install, and it went through what struck me as a normal installation process. But, of course, when it finished, though it would now boot just fine, I had Windows and nothing else. At that point, I then copied the image back over the installation, hoping that the installation had resolved the failure to boot issue. And the first try at booting failed. However, this time, when I put the Windows DVD back in, and chose the Repair option, it said it found a problem with the boot procedure and fixed it, and sure enough, it then booted normally. Mind you, the Recovery partition which had originally been on the same drive as the C drive was now long gone (since the physical disk had been replaced). So the Windows disk didn't get anything from that partition.

You mentioned in the tutorial that "You CAN do a Repair Install on a factory OEM Installation with the latest official Windows 7 with SP1 ISO file here (link) and use Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool to create a bootable DVD or USB flash drive with the ISO to dp the repair install from within Windows 7." Is that option still available, and if I were to do that, would the Product Key (which I do have from the sticker on the computer) work with it?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

10 Apr 2016   #2024
Brink

64-bit Windows 10 Pro
 
 

I'd pretty much give up on trying to do a repair install for Windows 7 since you'll never find a retail ISO that's as current as your installed Windows 7.

The product key number on your COA sticker will activate the Windows 7 edition it's for.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Apr 2016   #2025
RP McIntosh

Windows 7 Ultimate 64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Brink View Post
I'd pretty much give up on trying to do a repair install for Windows 7 since you'll never find a retail ISO that's as current as your installed Windows 7.

The product key number on your COA sticker will activate the Windows 7 edition it's for.
Thanks. Truth is, I wouldn't mind if the Repair Install wasn't as current as my existing installation. If I could get Windows reinstalled, with IE 11 and Windows Update working, without losing all of my installed programs, I'd be happy to slog through enough sessions of Windows Update to get it back to current status. The real issue for me is being able to get Windows repaired to some state, without losing my installed programs, even if it meant that I'd need several updates to get back to where I am now (or was, before all this happened).

I found a site that offers a Windows 7 SP1 Ultimate product key (and if I read it right, a downloadable ISO file) for $35.00. Considering what it would save me to be able to do a repair install, it would be worth it, IF in fact, one could do a repair install with this product. The URL for the product is:

Buy Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 Product Key for Windows 7 Key Store.

Could you take a look at it, and let me know whether or not you think I could do a repair install with it? Clearly, no reason to pay that just to do an ordinary install (where I lose the installed programs) since I could presumably do that with my existing Windows 7 DVD.

Once again, thanks for your help.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Apr 2016   #2026
Brink

64-bit Windows 10 Pro
 
 

The only problem is that the repair install would just fail if the installation media wasn't as current as the installed Windows.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Apr 2016   #2027
RP McIntosh

Windows 7 Ultimate 64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Brink View Post
The only problem is that the repair install would just fail if the installation media wasn't as current as the installed Windows.
You certainly know a lot more about this process than I do, so please don't think I'm debating with you about this, but I just want to understand better, because there is something that I clearly do NOT understand. I went back and read through your tutorial again, and if I am reading it right (by no means a certainty), step 9 of your tutorial has the installation program checking for and installing updates. In fact, it seems to me that almost ANY installation media would be less current than the installed Windows, even an installation that had been updated only once. So I'm obviously missing something in all of this. Even if there is no way I can do a Repair Install, I'd still like to understand how this process works. I did read through all of the "You CAN" and "You CAN'T" use section of the tutorial (talking about which kind of installation media can be used. And from that, it would seem to me that virtually all of the items listed in the "You CAN use" statements would be less current than than the installed version of Windows. Hope you can clarify this for me, and thanks in advance for your patience and willingness to help.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Apr 2016   #2028
Brink

64-bit Windows 10 Pro
 
 

No problem RP.

When it checks for updates during the installation process, it wont update it to what you currently have installed.

This is the main issue with trying to do a repair install. Since Microsoft is no longer releasing updated ISO files for Windows 7, it'll be impossible to do a repair install on a fully updated Windows 7 installation.

Because if this, it would now be best to keep updated system images instead. This way you can always restore a system image as needed.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Apr 2016   #2029
RP McIntosh

Windows 7 Ultimate 64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Brink View Post
No problem RP.

When it checks for updates during the installation process, it wont update it to what you currently have installed.

This is the main issue with trying to do a repair install. Since Microsoft is no longer releasing updated ISO files for Windows 7, it'll be impossible to do a repair install on a fully updated Windows 7 installation.

Because if this, it would now be best to keep updated system images instead. This way you can always restore a system image as needed.
OK. Thanks. One final question (though I think I already know the answer). Let's say I let my installation of Windows "age" a bit, so that it is a few months out of date. Would a repair install work then? What I'm missing is how an original installation disk, say of Windows 7 SP1 could ever be used to do a Repair Install, since it would almost immediately be "out of date" compared to the current installation. The System Image solution would have been a good idea had I thought of it before the problem. I (mistakenly) thought that the Acronis image of the C drive, which I created every week, would let me restore everything without a problem. Obviously, not the case. Hindsight is always 20/20.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Repair Install




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