Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

jmt356
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Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by jmt356 »

I have a Windows Vista Home computer that I am trying to restore to factory settings. I thought there was a way to do this in the Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center, but that only gives me the option to restore to Oct. 21 or Oct. 22 settings. I never made a factory-based restored point. I also did not make a recovery cd. Does this mean I cannot restore to the factory settings?
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JMT

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HansV
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by HansV »

Do you have the original installation CD?
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Hans

jmt356
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by jmt356 »

No. It didn't come with one.
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JMT

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HansV
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by HansV »

I can't help you then, perhaps someone else will have a suggestion.

Next time, make sure to create that recovery CD or DVD.
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Hans

jmt356
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by jmt356 »

This computer is 4 or 5 years old. Back then, I didn't even know what a recovery CD was. But now I do, and I make them.
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JMT

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viking33
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by viking33 »

jmt356 wrote:This computer is 4 or 5 years old. Back then, I didn't even know what a recovery CD was. But now I do, and I make them.
You didn't get an installation CD with the machine?
Is this an OEM machine like a Dell or HP?
If it is, isn't there a Recovery partition on the HD, so you can put it back to original shape with all of the junk included?
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agibsonsw
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by agibsonsw »

A lot of computers have a recovery partition pre-configured, although I'm not certain this stretches back five years - I think it does. If you're able to start the computer you may see this partition in Windows Explorer. Although, the partition might be hidden(?).

Sometimes this option appears very soon after starting up. Otherwise, start the computer and, after about (say) 10 seconds, keeping pressing the F8 function key to get into the settings area. It's F8 on most computers, but might be a different key for yours - possibly F9 or F12.

Sometimes you can just press the Escape key during the boot, but a message normally confirms that you can do this.

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DaveA
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by DaveA »

Post the Make and model of this machine, then we MAY be of more help?
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by jmt356 »

I don't think this was an OEM model. I bought it from BestBuy. I think I bought it in 2007.

Here are the specs:

Aspire 3680 - 2022
P/N: LX.AZL06.012
Model No.: ZR1
HDD: 80 GB
Wireless: 802.11 B/G
Softload: Vista Home Basic
Processor: Intel Celeron M420

There is a D drive partition. I know I store a lot of files on the D partition because the C partition isn't big enough. But if I recall correctly, there is a restore file on the D drive. I’m not sure. I attach an image of the files on the D drive in case anyone can recognize a restore file.

This computer originally came with 512 MB RAM, and I later upgraded to 2048 MB. If I restore it, will the computer recognize all of the new RAM?

D Drive.jpg
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
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JMT

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viking33
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by viking33 »

That is an ACER computer and would be considered an OEM machine.
There should be a Restore Partition on it if it was never reformatted.
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Argus
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by Argus »

jmt356 wrote:I don't think this was an OEM model. I bought it from BestBuy. I think I bought it in 2007.

Here are the specs:

Aspire 3680 - 2022
As Dave said, it's always good (read essential) to know what kind of computer we are talking about (and in this case it also happened to be a laptop, such things can also be interesting to know).

Acer has some disk to disk (D2D) recovery technology, and they use some different software with that, such as Acer eRecovery Management etc. I think, and one can use it for recovery and perhaps backups etc.

Acer often had several partitions, even though on those that I have seen the "D" wasn't used for recovery. (It wasn't used for My Docs either, just a large chunk of empty space, a bit odd :smile: Could perhaps be used as an extra, not only, backup since the recovery software will erase the "C" partition, but I would not trust it.) Instead they had a small ca 5 GB, hidden partition (EISA, Extended Industry Standard Architecture) at the beginning of the HDD, only seen in Disk Management (but that was during the XP era, and this is a Vista machine so they may have changed some things, but they still use recovery techniques, D2D).

So, some came with recovery CDs (as mentioned above) and a recovery partition using D2D, others came only with a recovery partition, which could be used to create recovery CDs etc.

The Acer eRecovery Management has some different features, and of most interest for you now is the recovery tool; Image/data recovery tools:

Recover from a hidden partition (factory defaults).
Recover from the HDD (most recent user-defined recovery point).
Recover from CD/DVD.

With that said, you have already got most of the info you need, in the other replies here, just need a partition, and hit the right key (if everything is set in the software/BIOS). So, your mission (after having created back ups etc., but I guess you know that) is to find out if there is a recovery partition.

Just for fun you could start by having a look (but don't touch :smile:) from inside Windows in the Disk Management (it's part of the Computer Management console).
Simply run: diskmgmt.msc
Or right-click Computer and choose Manage and select Disk Management in the console tree.

It could be interesting to know if you see more than two partitions, i.e. C and D, before you move on.

The recovery process, if it works, should be started during start-up, as mentioned earlier, one usually press some F key.

Ah yes,
jmt356 wrote:If I restore it, will the computer recognize all of the new RAM?
Yes, it will. It supports up to 2 GB, I guess you had 2x256 MB at the beginning, but it can be changed any time.

From the manual for you laptop, I think, (see this support page) but the F10 is often used. Remember to check the settings in the BIOS before you begin.
Acer support wrote:I want to restore my computer to its original settings without recovery CDs.

Note: If your system is the multilingual version, the operating system and language you choose when you first turn on the system will be the only option for future recovery operations.

This recovery process helps you restore the C: drive with the original software content that is installed when you purchase your notebook. Follow the steps below to rebuild your C: drive. (Your C: drive will be reformatted and all data will be erased.) It is important to back up all data files before using this option.

Before performing a restore operation, please check the BIOS settings.

1 Check to see if Acer disk-to-disk recovery is enabled or not.
2 Make sure the D2D Recovery setting in Main is Enabled.
3 Exit the BIOS utility and save changes. The system will reboot.

Note: To activate the BIOS utility, press <F2> during POST.

To start the recovery process:

1 Restart the system.
2 While the Acer logo is showing, press <Alt> + <F10> at the same time to enter the recovery process.
3 Refer to the onscreen instructions to perform system recovery.

Important! This feature occupies 4 to 5 GB in a hidden partition on your hard disk.
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Argus
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by Argus »

viking33 wrote:That is an ACER computer and would be considered an OEM machine.
There should be a Restore Partition on it if it was never reformatted.
Hi Bob,
I think that should be repartitioned, don't you? They are often hidden and not easily reached, so a reformat of C (1) or D (2) doesn't touch a hidden partition 0. It's almost impossible from within Windows, and I've experienced that the OS Setup software (run from the CD) doesn't see the hidden partition, so a complete removal of all partitions, under Advanced in Setup, doesn't work.
Some other tools must be used, in the case of the EISA partition see:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/242168" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
http://www.mydigitallife.info/delete-an ... -in-vista/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Ah, yes, for goodness' sake, not you, JMT; whatever you do, don't try the above. :laugh:
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jmt356
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by jmt356 »

Indeed, this computer had Acer eRecovery Management and I was able to easily restore the factory settings using it.

I thought OEM referred to a part that was manufactured by a company other than that whose brand appears on the item, as in an OEM battery for an HP laptop that is manufactured by a company other than HP.
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JMT

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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by jmt356 »

The restored settings recognize the 2 GB RAM, not the factory default 512 MB.
Regards,

JMT

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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by jmt356 »

Argus wrote:Ah, yes, for goodness' sake, not you, JMT; whatever you do, don't try the above. :laugh:
I may be computer-challenged, but there is hope for us all. I used to know almost nothing about Word, but after a few years following Hans around various Lounges, I know my way around Word well enough that my firm's IT department started calling me a Word "power user," which means I know Word better than they do.
Regards,

JMT

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Argus
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by Argus »

I was just joking. (Since the links in that post was completely anti, off, topic.)

Good to hear that you have achieved whatever you wanted to do, with the help of things written in this thread or elsewhere.

(Perhaps the subject should have been 'restore to factory settings', or something similar, but I guess there is enough keywords in the thread for future search results.)
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Re: Windows Vista Backup and Restore Center

Post by StuartR »

jmt356 wrote:...I thought OEM referred to a part that was manufactured by a company other than that whose brand appears on the item, as in an OEM battery for an HP laptop that is manufactured by a company other than HP.
OEM is an acronym for Original Equipment Manufacturer.
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