Microsoft Windows -- we use it every day, but not everyone knows what to do when it gives you problems or simply stops working. Thereís nothing worse than pressing the power button on your computer and waiting for what seems like forever, only to realize itís failing to boot for one reason or another. Maybe thereís a hardware issue, maybe itís not plugged in, maybe the monitor isnít turned on, or maybe your operating system decided to crap out on you. If youíre lucky, the problem doesnít stop the system from booting, merely causing some performance hiccups or issues with peripherals instead. Whatever ails you, you can avoid spending endless hours trying to troubleshoot the thing by doing what most enthusiasts have almost made a routine out of: reformatting the hard drive and/or reinstalling Windows.
Short of getting yourself a whole new system, a fresh installation of Windows is the closest you can get to your computer having a clean slate. Sure, youíll have to reconfigure all your settings and reinstall some or all of your games and programs, but thatís a small price to pay for fixing whatever software problems were plaguing you before. Now, before you shut down and dig your Windows DVD out of that preposterous pile of junk over there, here are a few things you should consider (aside from memorizing or printing this article for offline reference):
- Is there anything on your hard drive you want to keep and need to back up first?
- Are you sure your problem was not caused by a virus that may still reside on your hard drive?
- If you bought your computer from a manufacturer like Dell or HP, did they give you a restore disc?
- Do you have System Restore turned on?
- Have you tried fixing the problem with Windows self-repair?