Help I need to restore

By molaussen
Aug 17, 2008
  1. Hi guys,

    I need to restore my computer back to its factory settings. I have spent too much time trying to correct and error in windows. my main problem is in office. everytime i try to open an office application, i get this whole long "this patch package, blah blah blah" i tried downloading service patches and everything else. i even tried unistalling microsoft office- no avail.

    At this point, i just want to restore my dell desktop back to its factory settings.

    i remember doing this with a tech from dell when it was under warranty and he just walked me through a bunch of steps. i cant find my xp operating system cd but have a different one from another computer... but i dont remember needing it.

    Can anyone help me restore my computer. I dont care about all my data being lost.. i just want it back so that i can reinstall all my other applications.

    Please help this dumb blonde!
  2. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +10

    This will usually work:
    Repair Install WXP. You may wish to print out these instructions, or find a better description online as to how to do it. The print out will help keeping it all straight unless you have a good memory.

    If you have, or can borrow an XP CD that is NOT a computer manufacturer restore or recovery disc, boot your computer using that disc. You may need to change the boot order in your computer BIOS (usually by pressing <DEL> at startup to get to the change boot section) because you want the CD to boot before the hard drive. If this doesn’t work, check your system documentation for steps to access your BIOS, then change the boot order. Once done, you may want to go back and return it to the way it was.
    You should then see a <welcome to setup> screen, where you will find these choices:
    This portion of the Setup program prepares Microsoft
    Windows XP to run on your computer:
    To setup Windows XP now, press Enter.

    To repair a Windows XP installation using Recovery Console, press R.

    To quit Setup without installing Windows XP, press F3

    Press <ENTER> to start the Windows Setup.
    Caution: Do Not choose “To repair a Windows XP Installation using the Recovery Console, Press R” as that will produce unwanted time and trouble unless you have ample experience running Repair Console repairs. The < R > you need is in the second paragraph below:

    Accept the License Agreement and Windows will search for existing Windows installations.
    Select the XP installation you want to repair from the list and at this time press R to start the repair. If Repair is not one of the options, stop running the setup. Something is wrong. Start over.
    Setup will copy the necessary files to the hard drive and reboot. Do not depress any key to boot from the CD when that message appears. Setup will continue as if it were doing a clean install, but your applications and settings will remain intact.
    Do not immediately activate over the internet when asked. Enable the XP Firewall before connecting to the internet. You can activate after the firewall is enabled. Control Panel - Network Connections. Right click the connection you use, Properties and there is a check box on the Advanced page.
    1. Reapply updates and install Service Packs applied since initial Windows XP installation. Please note that a Repair Install using an Original pre service pack 1 or 2 XP CD used as the install media will likely remove SP1/SP2 respectively and service packs plus updates issued after the service packs will need to be reapplied.

    What this will usually do for you is correct any problems with the Windows Install that may be affecting your Windows install, particularly the hard ware issues with USB. Because, normally, USB and 1394 drivers are installed as part of Windows.
    You can look in the Device Manager <Start -> Settings -> Control Panel -> System -> Hardware -> Device Manager -> to see what devices have yellow or red flags. Those flags mean those devices are damaged or not installed properly.
  3. molaussen

    molaussen TS Rookie Topic Starter


    Thanks for all your help!
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