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  • Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

    By Fred Langa..
    Microsoft won’t tell you this, but you can do a fast, nondestructive, in-place, total reinstall of Windows 7 without damaging your user accounts, data, installed programs, or system drivers.
    That means you may never have to do a full, from-scratch reinstall again, even when your system is misbehaving so badly that a full reformat-and-reinstall seems the only answer!
    http://windowssecrets.com/top-story/...ive-reinstall/












    Ok I have posted all of the important images from the Link by Fred Langa. Attached is a Word Document with all of the instructions taken from the Link. No Pictures. This works as I have done it many , many times. It is a great deal easier if you have a DVD with SP1 slip streamed into it. One draw back is that you have to re install every update from Windows Update but that is far easier than re installing all of your programs. It will remove Third Party Icons but it will leave your Themes intact. You may have to re-install the Kit and/or TRC. The entire process takes about 2.5 hours and you do not have to babysit it. Only at the beginning and end.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by HammerJack; 20-10-2013, 20:33.

  • #2
    Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

    Nice find Gary, Did not know this little secret was out there.
    This will come in handy for many including myself. We all know that fresh installs from scratch can days or even weeks to get all your apps and settings back in order. This looks like another must have for any Windows enthusiast.

    I strongly urge anyone running this to completely read the entire website to be sure you do not miss anything, like the following for instance..

    So, if you’re attempting to repair Win7 SP1 with a pre-SP1 DVD, you need to remove SP1 from the target PC before proceeding. Fortunately, that’s easy, as Figure 1 shows.
    W20110714-TS-Uninstall.jpg

    Might add that I may just try this. It seems that Windows has out grown my partition I originally started with. All of a sudden I'm noticing the red progress bar on my C drive telling me I'm down to 30MB free space. When I say out grown I mean that I started with a 500GB (not MB) partition and know dang well I had plenty of space left over at the beginning of this fresh install. So now I'm miffed about how Windows has grown and used all my free space??? On a side note I only keeps the apps I really need and delete the rest. So I don't think it's the apps taking up the free space???
    Last edited by HammerJack; 20-10-2013, 20:45.


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    • #3
      Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

      So I don't think it's the apps taking up the free space???
      Have you checked your pagefile? Could be system restore as well....and hibernation. They all will chew up some space.

      Nice post as well :good2:

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      • #4
        Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

        Very interesting stuff @Gary: and @HammerJack: thanks for the share.

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        • #5
          Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

          I do not use system restore or hibernation. I do a Windows 7 Image about every other day. SR slows down your PC and does not always work and Hibernation uses a great deal of disk space roughly the equivalent to the amount of Ram you have installed.
          Yes Jack I have known about this for awhile just thought I would share it here. I always look for stuff like this. I used to subscribe to the Langa Letter in the 90's until he moved to Windows Secrets and started to charge for it. I just thought that most Geeks would know most of the tricks. I know a few more and I will post them here.

          Oh and @HammerJack: , if you do not have a slip streamed Dvd wit SP1 , I would make one ASAP. Saves a great deal of time.
          Last edited by Gary; 21-10-2013, 01:14.

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          • #6
            Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

            Originally posted by chevy350 View Post
            Have you checked your pagefile? Could be system restore as well....and hibernation. They all will chew up some space.
            Thanks for this tip also, and will get to searching around for some more info about these. From what I remember pagefile can be set on a specific amount but it never can take more than your installed ram??? But not sure how that can grow if that's what your implying?
            Shoot me some links if ya have some handy, I'd be interested in your angle as well.

            Originally posted by Gary View Post
            Oh and HammerJack , if you do not have a slip streamed Dvd wit SP1 , I would make one ASAP. Saves a great deal of time.
            Thanks for the feedback again Gary, and ya I've experimented with an older Vista disk once so maybe I could take the time to fool with my 7 disk also.
            I see your new thread now so I'm off to check out some more links, lol..


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            • #7
              Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

              http://www.sevenforums.com/

              The above forum was an affiliate at the busted Theme forum, I have been a member there since 2009. It has many knowledgeable users. I only started posted there about 6 or 7 months ago though.

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              • #8
                Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

                chevy350,
                Did some snooping round and after trying a few things I'm back to normal on that C drive free space issue.
                I ran disk cleanup again and this time I noticed an entry for Windows update files, and also ran the option to delete old restore's. Update files were showing over 5gb though and after running the tool the drive stats went back to normal showing 385gb free of 500gb. In other words I just picked up over 300bg of space after running disk cleanup.??? If update files were suppose to be 5bg, was windows really using that much space for old restores, ( No file size is listed in th UI for the restore data) or was there some kind of glitch in reporting my free space on that drive. Might also note that after a restart the 'busy updating don't shut off computer' message was there both at shut down & restart.

                Only other thing I did was unchecked Windows automatically managing pagefile.
                Anyways thanks for adding your help on the thread, maybe someone else might benefit in the future.


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                • #9
                  Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

                  Good to hear Jack, I have 16Gb of ram and quite a few would say to just disable the pagefile but some apps will need it so I set mine from 2-4Gb. I don't use hibernation so it's disabled through cmd. System restore is off as well as I leave back-up's to anything but windows lol since it usually doesn't like to overwrite itself. Sorry for hijacking the thread Gary

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                  • #10
                    Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

                    Great thread guys thanks for all info

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                    • #11
                      Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

                      Originally posted by chevy350 View Post
                      Good to hear Jack, I have 16Gb of ram and quite a few would say to just disable the pagefile but some apps will need it so I set mine from 2-4Gb. I don't use hibernation so it's disabled through cmd. System restore is off as well as I leave back-up's to anything but windows lol since it usually doesn't like to overwrite itself. Sorry for hijacking the thread Gary
                      That tip you posted will really help those with SSD's as space is at a premium.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

                        i follow your step,but after i click "Install Now",my laptop freeze,i must put off the battrey T_T
                        can you help me

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                        • #13
                          Re: Win7′s no-reformat, nondestructive reinstall

                          Originally posted by skarm View Post
                          i follow your step,but after i click "Install Now",my laptop freeze,i must put off the battrey T_T
                          can you help me
                          Disable antivirus/try another disk.

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