View Full Version : XP restore question

09-02-2010, 4:24 PM
I am attempting to clean out and fix my girlfriends computor. She has a HP Pavilion with a 3200 Athlon processor, 80 gig HD, and 960 gig of RAM. Unfortunatly, there is so much stuff in it, it can't run. Defrag couldn't run, since it only had 11% free space.
This morning, I burned about 4 gig worth of photos to DVD, and that freed up enough space to allow Defrag to run. It then had about 16% available space. But, it says there are fragmented files, and if I can believe the bar graph, LOTS of fragmented files. I still have about another 14 gigs of photos to burn and remove. But that still leaves about 40 gigs of stuff, probably her daughter's games, on the computor.
Her computor is extremely slow and freezes. I think she needs to reformat and restore, since I have been told that Windows OS should have that done about once every 1 1/2 - 2 years. Because Windows becomes unstable over time and her computor is about 6 years old.
She is leary of having that done, since she has paid quite a bit of money at least twice to have "files cleaned". I am not sure if that means restoring or what.
Is there anything that you can think of that I need to do, or can do to fix or speed up her computor. We are getting ready to delete about everything we can think of.

09-02-2010, 5:38 PM
XP is fine, its more the users than anything and the cluttler or programs and games they down load and then never use. It just keeps piling up and slowing the PC down. You cant install a game / software these days without getting a few additional programs bundled in with it. A lot of times you can check to install them or uncheck the box to not install them...most people install them thinking they are fine. In reality they are bloatware and are just going to be running at start up...sucking up the PCs resources.

Let me guess, you have 70+ process running.

Anyway, back up to disc what you can, download CCleaner and run the cleaner on the windows and applications tab, then have it anylize the registry and fix all issues. May want to run a virus scan also, make sure your AV is up to date to and also do a defrag.

Best option is to back up the data and do a clean install. Depending on your skill lvl, i would not do a restore because its not cleaning the drive and removing all the garbage thats accumulated. A restore is an option if your not comfortable doing a clean install.

Step by step Clean install:

09-02-2010, 10:04 PM
i would reinstall windows xp. for me i have done it a gazillion times that i could time it down to like 1.5 hours.


1. do you have original windows xp disk that is proper to the license. ie, you can cant use an upgrade cd on an OEM license (the sticker on the side of the machine). dont ask me why i know. and same thing for home vs professional flavor of xp. lucky there are only 2, minus the xp-64 bit version.

2. can you buy a bigger HD? now, problem with an older machine is that it cant use all of the space. for example, i had an older sony box that came with a 80 gb hd. it was partition from the factory as 15 gb boot and the rest as D: drive. well i thought i would buy, then like 100+ gb drive. nope... cant recognize all 100+ gigs... sigh.

3. back up, back up, back up her data. confirm on another machine that IT IS readable. ask her to open her MOST important files. again... dont ask why i tell you this...

4. print out the DEVICE DRIVER listing. in the HARDWARE -> DEVICE MANAGER, there is an option to print the listing. careful, it's like 10+ pages. then DOWNLOAD all drivers from HP's site. most important is the video driver. slap this puppy on its own CD if you have to. next is network adapter. with those 2, you can connect to the internet and download/upgrade drivers.

did i mention to back up?????

have fun and good lucjk... lol...

09-03-2010, 8:56 AM
Well, I have done clean installs on my computors many times. However, my GF is very hesitant about doing it. Even though I have told her that it appears that it is probably her only option, since her files are so messed up.
I have never predownloaded the drivers before. But, since we have HP computors, we get the pleasure of making our own program discs from the special programing on the comnputor, something I did for her last year.
Right now, it is just a matter of getting the pictures burned then deleted off her HD. Biggest problem, is that the DVD burner doesn't want to comply. When I hit the "Burn" button, the tray kicks open with the command to install a disc.........................even when a blank disc is already in the tray. I am working on that issue.
I did download and install CCleaner, and removed 985 mb of stuff from her HD. So, I am making some headway.

09-03-2010, 11:45 AM
Sounds like you have to many programs running at once. This is any easy fix. Also using CCleaner, go to the start up tab and uncheck all the stuff that is pointless, like java, adobe reader, etc.

09-03-2010, 1:28 PM
Get an external hard drive and backup her pictures, movies, music, etc. to that. It will be much quicker than making DVD's.

If there's no AntiVirus protection on there download and install AVG Free Edition and run a scan and see if there are any viruses on the computer.

I would also run a sypware/malware scan also. If the computer is infected with spyware/malware it can slow the computer down also. You can download SpyBot Search and Destroy or Malwarebytes and use both the run a scan and get rid of spyware/malware.

I stopped using Window's built in defrag. I use Auslogic's Disk Defrag. Does a much better job at it.

All of the programs I've mentioned above you can go to cnet's website and download for free.

Since your girlfriend is hesistante about doing a restore I would try these steps first and see if there's a improvement before reformatting the HD.

Also how much RAM is on the computer? Based on my experience if the computers are at least 5 or 6 years old running XP it probably has only 512mb or 1gig of RAM on there. If that's the case I would upgrade the RAM to at least 2gig or more. You should see an increase in performance with just a RAM upgrade also.