Any danger in reinstalling Vista before using it?

  polymath 20:21 12 Dec 2007

Apologies if you've read this question in another related thread, but the above title now seems more apt.

I can't get into Vista, which is preinstalled in the computer I bought 2 weeks ago (the detail's in another Helproom thread at click here ). At one point, when a Startup Restore didn't do the trick, a technical help person suggested reinstalling Vista (another option in the same low-level looking menu). I haven't done it yet.
Given that some hardware manufacturers seem to fall back on that when they can't think of anything else, it seemed a good idea to check here first for any info/opinions.

As I haven't got to the stage where I could do any work or settings in the computer, reinstalling seems a simple solution. But would I lose any of the non-Windows software that's also preinstalled? It includes a good security suite, and I'd prefer not to have to buy one, or to download it via the dialup I'm stuck with (or to download Firefox, also preinstalled and my preferred browser).

And are there any other downsides to reinstalling Vista at this stage?

  iscanut 20:32 12 Dec 2007

Not the answer to your question, but if the pc is only 2 weeks old, why do you not take it back to the supplier and get them to sort it out. Should not be up to you to do it !

  topdude 20:35 12 Dec 2007

Yes, if you re-install Vista you will lose all other preinstalled software.
What you realy need is a "Recovery" disc to take your PC back to it's factory settings as it was when you bought it.
Does your PC have a hidden recovery partition ?
Did it come with a "Recovery" disc ?
If not try to get one from the manufacturer.
When a PC is assembled they don't sit there loading windows and lots of software, it is all flashed on to the hard drive at once from a master disc so they should provide you with a recovery option.

  anskyber 20:40 12 Dec 2007

I agree with Nuts, take it back.

  polymath 21:28 12 Dec 2007

Thank you all.

There's a fuller story at the above link, Nuts (I seem to remember that thread in turn has a link to yet more details!). To try & make a long story short; as I didn't buy an extended warranty, the manufacturer's technical help people are only supposed to deal with my hardware problems, not software ones (though their email help team have given me software help beyond the call of duty).
I turned on the computer while on the phone to a number thay gave me, & described what happens, on which they decided it's a software problem (which does seem to make sense). They haven't suggested taking it back to the store, but I'll look into that - thanks Nuts and anskyber.

Thanks for all the info, topdude.
I didn't get a recovery disk, so I'll try and get one - perhaps that tech team will send me one. It would save time - it's more or less a day's work getting to the retailer and back.
I don't know if there's a Recovery partition (I presume it's a different thing from the Startup Recovery I did?). Is there a low-level way to find out, like some keypress while booting up? (I can't get into Vista to ask it).

I couldn't find the answer on the Microsoft website by the way, and its user forum hasn't come up with one so far. The site says, in its 'How to get help' section, 'if it's preinstalled, contact your hardware manufacturer'.

I have to go now; back tomorrow, and I'll source that recovery disk if I can.

  polymath 21:25 13 Dec 2007

All systems go, at last! (After one of the longest and most maddening troubleshooting sagas I've ever had).

Before trying to get hold of a recovery disk, I checked the recovery disk section in the booklet one more time, and noticed a faint, inconspicuous note saying if I couldn't get the Desktop, I could press F11 when powering up, to start the Recovery program. I then did a recovery this way, so now know how to find the program in the computer without getting to the Desktop; a Complete Recovery, so as to lose all my data but not lose any software (which is what I've been trying to do, for the reason described via the link). I'll make a recovery disk soon.

I'd been avoiding trying F11, as a tech help email had said it was the button to use for reinstalling Windows, which it said was the next thing to try. (but which I wasn't sure about). I'd guess they typed 'reinstall' instead of 'recover' (something to mention when I report back to them!).

So that's done, with your help.
It didn't solve my original problem, but then that was solved within the next few minutes and I can now get into Vista, thanks to a lead that doing the Recovery gave me (all should hopefully become clear if you're interested, once I've had time to post to the other thread linked to above).

Thank you all again for your help!

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