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Will reinstalling windows make my pc like new?

  1. Aug 15, 2011 #1
    When I got my pc back in 208, it ran like the wind. Its a sager gaming laptop. Years of use and abuse has filled a 150gb harddrive, cluttered every inch of space, and reduced its performance for games like oblivion.

    If I reinstall womdows with a completely clean slate, can I expect old performamce?0
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 15, 2011 #2


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    It's definitely worth a try if you think it's a software problem. If it's a hardware problem, you may have to replace something.

    If the guts are all dusty and cobwebbed and the fans have been plugged, some heat damage might have occurred. Some badly placed, or malicious software can make computer run harder than they need to. Hardware wares out. If it's just your hard drive that has worn out, it's relatively cheap to replace (make sure you know whether you need SATA or IED).

    Three year old computer technology may be cheap to buy nowadays, especially if you put it together yourself.
  4. Aug 16, 2011 #3
    Also check if you can replace the hard drive with an ssd. This way, lots of disk bottleneck will be gone and it will run much faster. Try to upgrade RAM also. If you keep on mechanical disks, reinstalling windows will also help alot, but for something less drastic, you can just defrag and cleanup the disk. I would reinstall though.
  5. Aug 16, 2011 #4


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    Besides reinstalling windows the big headache is to reinstall and reactivate all other software you have, taking backups and restore mailfolders reinstall printers etc. I usually takes weeks until you remember all the small tools and small gadgets that you had on the old installation.

    I suggest first trying the less drastic measures.

    Do a proper defrag. Defraggler is usually better than builting defrag. All kind of crap software and updates tend to also accumulate into your system and slows it down. A good utility to browse your registry and see what you actually have starting up is

    Autoruns - http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb963902

    Use it with care, but you can disable thing by thing and it can make a difference in particular if your system if clogged with crap software. Even if you have a new computer, there are a lot of things that really don't need to be started each time you start windows. These things you can easily disable from the registry from starting up, without uninstallting it.

  6. Aug 16, 2011 #5
    I already did it, I am pretty satisfied with the results. Upgrading is a little trickier on a laptop like this. I know there are a few components that just can't be changed. Now I need a way to stop it from getting so hot.

    Thanks guys.
  7. Aug 21, 2011 #6
    You should also check out the internal parts of the computer, like the fan. The insides usually clog with dust, especially near the fan, which causes sluggishness.
  8. Aug 21, 2011 #7


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    If you have one of the popular OEM systems, such as Dell or HP, there's probably a "hidden" partition that you can use to "restore" your system to it's initial install state (called Recovery Manager for HP).

    You'll need to backup any imporant data or installation files for applications you bought, probably best to do this using an external (USB) hard drive.

    This restore feature is accessed via the BIOS, usually by pressing a combination of keys like <ctrl> + <F11> (Dell) or just <F11> (HP) during a boot. It will then boot you into the menu, where one of the options will be system restore feature, which is really a second instance of an OS used to restore the main partition. Note that doing this will destroy any data or programs you've added to the system. It will restore your system to it's original state, including all of the applications that came with your system.
  9. Aug 23, 2011 #8
    For future installs, it's a good idea to image your system after you have all your software installed, and before you "do anything", and also keep your data files in a specific location that you backup. This way, if you want to start fresh, you can reload the image which returns your computer to it's "new state", and then get your data file backup and copy your files back. A little bit of preperation, for a very easy and painless re-install. MacOS have a TimeMachine application for this, and there's a Norton one for Windows, and probably a million other ones too.

    I should take my own advice, but I have so little extra software installed these days that it's pretty easy to just set it up from scratch again.

    It's nice to give the insides a good clean as well, an air compressor works wonders on fans and things.
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