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Near "fool proof" procedure for repairing XP Operating System.

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As the cliche poverty-stricken writer, I do not have much in the way of money...


So over the years I have taught myself, and designed a system for avoiding having to spend considerable money on repairs! In fact, because my computer is often on from 7am ish to late... I used to pay out £100's of each year on these! Additionally, I found 4/5 technicians were not actually that good, and you are better usually doing it yourself in any case!


Nevertheless with a computer that is around 8 years old, and only cost around £120 originally - I have not had to take my computer to a technician, for around 4/5 years I expect. Over the years, I have developed the following system (which as now I am getting a new comp, may become unneccessary for myself - hopefully!) in any case, each one of these steps are placed in priority order, and take a path of commencing with the least invasive - to through experience I have found most promising results:


Hope they help, I just thought rather than dismissing these entirely, they may just help someone!!!


Obviously the last resort is fully reinstalling the entire software, but I do believe the steps will not only save money, but have proven to save much time.



Steps to Troubleshoot and Resolve Comp Issues

and Avoid Full Reinstall:

From the least Invasive to larger More Comprehensive Steps.


1) Run Correction Programmes:


i) Anti – Spyware

ii) Anti – Virus

iii) Reg Fixes.

iv) Run Malware Bytes. Particularly good free programme, able to download from Hippo


2) Fixes problems on the whole on Re – start, if selected:



My Computer



Check Now

Tick both boxes

Then Start


3) Disk Defragment.

My Computer



Check the second box here – Disk Defragment.


4) Run Progs fix: (Put in Window’s XP Disc!)




SFC (leave one space here)/SCANNOW (do not forget forward/slash before SCANNOW)


5) System Restore to an earlier date:



All Programmes


System Tools

System Restore - (choose a date, that is the most recent first – before the change you believe caused the problems!)


6) Possibly turn off system restore, and do a virus scan.


Beware you will lose your restore points, if you follow this course of action, but virus have been know to be caught up in this mechnism, so as a last resort - it is worth turning it off perhaps and scanning.


7) Windows XP – Repair:


Backup & save all My Documents and Word Prog’s to memory sticks.

Save any Documents on the desktop, such as maps and info.

Save AOL PFC & Favourites if necessary.

Save all Drivers on Driver Max if possible for easy reinstall.


See instructions but select the 2nd repair option - on placing the Windows disc in, and switching to safe F5 mode.


7) Full reinstall of windows XP… see instructions.

Edited by SebastianWhite
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  • 2 weeks later...

Nice write up Sebastian, but XP has been rode hard and put away wet.

How about something for Windows7 ?

Lot of folks still using XP Joe. Leave the Windows 7 tips for the next guy... ;) -kd5-

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  • 4 months later...

Full install is always faster and guaranteed to fix the issues. I can get 7 installed and configured in about an hour for my customers...2 hours if they get data backed up.

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