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Vista system recovery problem

By katm
Nov 3, 2010
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  1. After my hard drive crashed, my brother installed a new one for me. I ordered recovery discs from Sony and he installed them also. The computer couldn't detect any operating system from what he told me so since I misplaced my Vista Home Edition he installed XP Professional. After not being able find any drivers for my Sony Vaio model VGN-FE855E I found out that my notebook is not compatible with anything besides Vista. Sony Tech people told me I should find my operating system on the recovery discs the sent me. Im trying to run them but I have a message saying: "The recovery drive letter is the same as the system drive letter". What does it mean and why I can't get my system recovered?
     
  2. mike1959

    mike1959 TS Addict Posts: 1,118   +22

    Hi, First I must say I have no knowledge of Sony Viao hardware, BUT you have the problem which is, when you bought the PC new, it will have had the Vista OS installed twice. Once in a partition that you never use, that will be in the condition as it was the first day you used it. The second version, is a copy of the first, but is the one you have been working with, until it crashed, or hard drive failed.
    When you go into the recovery routine, the software is looking for the first copy of Vista, and then to copy it over (on top of) the second version of Vista. BUT because you have changed the hard drive for a new one, the recovery partition is not there. Your PC was pre-activated with Microsoft for your particular machine to use Vista (Home premium, or Pro or Ultimate), and will have had the drivers installed for all the devices, (touchpad, webcam, DVD, card reader etc) on the original hard drive, which you now have lost. What you do now depends on what Sony have supplied on the discs that they sent to you.
    I will assume they have supplied the Vista operating system, or the Sony OEM version, plus all the drivers for your PC. So all you need to do, is to make your PC read from the DVD drive when you switch on, with the Sony disc in the DVD drive. It should then be fairly automatic, and you will need to enter some information as you go along. The most important being the 'Product key' which is printed on a sticker underneath your PC. Best to copy it down before you start. It is five blocks of letters and numbers, you will have to type them into Vista, part way through the install process. To make your Pc look at the DVD drive rather than the hard drive, you press power on, then look for a message on-screen, 'Setup=F2' or 'Boot order=F12', or similar, it may vanish off screen quickly, but if you miss it, just shut down and start again. When you see a screen with options, you look for 'Drives' or 'Boot order'. You have to make the list of your drives look like; 1st =CD/DVD, 2nd On-board IDE/SATA. (Any others in the list are not important. NOTE that you have to use certain keys, eg. cursor, enter, pg up, pg dwn, esc at this stage.)
    Then put the Sony DVD into the drive, look on screen for the option 'Save changes and exit' (normally F11). Your PC will reboot, and start reading off the DVD. It will ask you various questions as you go along, (your location, time zone etc). You should find it takes about 1 1/2 hours, and you may have to put in a second DVD as supplied by SONY after Vista has installed. If all goes well, you may need to go to Microsoft's site to 'activate' Vista, but it's automatic. I will assume this is what will happen, if not, in worst case situation, that is if Sony didn't supply Vista, you MAY have to buy a new Operating system, it will be Windows 7 now, not Vista. If you do that, you will get a new 'Product key'. Also you will need to go to Sony's site to download the specific drivers for your PC. (But try your Sony supplied disc first, you should not need to spend any more money). Hope this helps.
     


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