Windows XP Recovery

wee2john

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How do completed wipe out the computers memory and start all over agian on windows xp without a CD-ROM (OS came preinstalled like 5 years ago on a laptop). When I do start from scratch do I have to enter a windows ativation key cause i do not have one - as mentioned before it was preinstalled from the store.
 

berry120

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Most computers should at least come with a recovery disk (or tell you to make your own) - have you not got one of these around?
 

cboucher

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Unless you can get the manufacturer to send you a recovery disk, you'll have to either purchase a full version XP disk or download a Linux distribution ISO and try that out for free (if you're feeling adventurous).
 

berry120

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You can't just delete everything within windows! To start with you won't be able to while windows is running if that's what you mean (windows will be using some files and therefore you won't be able to get rid of them) and secondly as a result it'll most likely just corrupt your windows installation, probably rendering it unbootable.

If you do format your entire hard drive, then you'll just get an "unbootable media, please insert system disk and press enter" message (or similar) when you try and start your computer up, and won't be able to do anything until you install an operating system from a CD. And as said above, you'll need to get a CD with XP on in order to reinstall XP.
 

jmacavali

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You'll need to have a recovery CD or a full version. Of course there's other methods to get a CD than buying it ;)

As long as the computer has a Windows Product Key sticker on it, then you can use any 'copy' and use your Product Key to activate it. It might mean you have to call Microsoft, but it's all automated and as long as you have a legit Product Key (which if you have the sticker still on the laptop) and give them it, they'll let you activate it legally.
 

cboucher

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You'll need to have a recovery CD or a full version. Of course there's other methods to get a CD than buying it ;)

As long as the computer has a Windows Product Key sticker on it, then you can use any 'copy' and use your Product Key to activate it. It might mean you have to call Microsoft, but it's all automated and as long as you have a legit Product Key (which if you have the sticker still on the laptop) and give them it, they'll let you activate it legally.
Just make sure the CD is the same version of XP. (Don't use an XP Professional CD if your key is for XP Home Edition).
 

A True Folder

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Use Magic Jellybean Keyfinder to extract your key from the laptop before you format it

If you have access to an installation disk then boot the laptop via the disk, delete the primary partition and recreate it, then format and install.

If you don't have a disk there is no way to reinstall an operating system, what were you intending to do?
 
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