Problems with an old computer

  hiwatt 23:54 14 Apr 2008

Hi folks,I've been given an old computer.It's an imedia 5067(packard bell)It's still got some data and a lot of old programs not to mention some malware on it.I'd really like to restore to factory settings.While trying to do so I done a system restore back to last year and now when I go to system restore it opens up a totaly blank page,same with user accounts.This was ok 'till I done the SR.If I can borrowa an xp home disc will I be able to do a clean install of windows on it?Any ideas how to get a clean system are reall appreciated.P.s I've got a similar threadI started before these recent problems that I'll close.Thanks.

  woodchip 00:25 15 Apr 2008

No,I tried it with several that I have. you can use one to do a repair but not install

  DieSse 09:16 15 Apr 2008

"If I can borrowa an xp home disc will I be able to do a clean install of windows on it?

Yes, of course you can - BUT

The activation code that's on the label on your PC might not work with the CD you have. The code will be from a batch sold to P-Bell, and might be for a different version of XP, and/or may be tied to a P-Bell installation routine (I don't actually know for P-Bell systems).

So there is a risk it may not work. I have done the same type of thing with other proprietary systems successfully though.

If it does work, the OS may still refuse to activate, though a call to M-Soft should fix that, at least.

It's also possible your P-Bell has a hidden recovery partition on the hard drive, which you'll only be able to remove by repartitioning or running a program such as Killdisk, which returns your hard drive to a pristine, totally empty state.

And you will need the set of drivers for the motherboard etc, which apply to your system (usually on a CD which came with the system) - you may want to see if there is an updated set of these on the P-Bell site.

  hiwatt 11:25 15 Apr 2008

It has got another partion on the hardrive.It's 1.20+ gigs.I'm sure this is the back up.I'm not sure what you mean by removing it or running killdisc though?Thanks.P.s any idea how I can get system restore back?I had done a SR but the mouse wasn't plugged in to accept it so I had to switch off from the tower.I think this might have corrupted SR?

  DieSse 11:40 15 Apr 2008

If you install a fresh copy of the standard XP - you won't need a P-Bell recovery partition - so in that case you may as well remove it.

Killdisk is a free program you can download, which wipes hard drives completely clean of absolutely everything. Data, software, partitions, the lot.

If you can't do a system restore - I guess you just can't - I've never heard of being able to resurrect it if it's not working.

I don't know how to use the P-Bell restore partition, unless restore CDs were made as per P-Bell instructions when the system was new.

  DieSse 11:42 15 Apr 2008

Or to take another tack completely - why not wipe it clean and install Linux? It's free, and far less issues than Windows - especially for a fresh install.

  hiwatt 18:09 21 Apr 2008

Hi folks,I borrowed a friends windows xp disc and I've managed to do a fresh clean install.However there was 2 partions,one(E)size 1.95gb which I initially installed windows on.That left the C drive size=35.3gb which had a lot of malware and old data on it.I thought I would be able to wipe it clean but I've now got windows on this too.Would I be better keeping it on E or C?And what's the best way to do it?This is my first bash at installing windows.Thanks.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 18:35 21 Apr 2008

E: would have been the restore partition and
C: the first XP installation with the malware.

If you formatted E: before installing window sthen you have lost the restore info.

BEST bet then is to start again from scratch.

Boot from the CD format both partitions.

Install XP to C: using the number on the PC case

  hiwatt 18:48 21 Apr 2008

The recovery had been deleted anyway.What I was trying to do was install xp on the E partion but then just format and wipe completelty drice C and keep that for all my data.Would it be ok to just wipe C clean and do it that way?Thanks.P.s I've used the number on the case to install and it's worked but it's saying I have 30 days to activate windows?

  Terry Brown 19:30 21 Apr 2008

What it is saying is you are not the registered owner of the software and after 30 days it will not work. You may be able to change it to the number on the CD you 'borrowed' by using this method. click here
however there are no guarrantees.

  hiwatt 19:44 21 Apr 2008

I was given the computer by a family friend and the product key is on the side of the pc case.I was told that I could borrow an xp cd and it'd be ok as long as I used the key number on the computer case?Would it not be the same if I entered my friends computer key number,because he'll have it installed on his computer?Thanks.

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