SMITTY wrote:By reformatting do you mean wiping out the whole disc & reloading the OS? I've always heard of doing this but sounds like a MAJOR pain in the ass. Every single computer I have had probably needed this.
It is to some degree but if you keep organized to begin with then it's not much of an issue. The biggest issue becomes custom files, for example suppose you install font and use it in a video project. If the font is not installed after you reformat then it uses default.... For that reason I keep a copy of all the fonts I install in My documents and apply the same thing to other pieces of software. Bookmarks on your browser and email is another example. Fortunately you can either set custom locations for them in My documents or export them before reformatting.
I'm still on XP and still do this every 2 or 3 years, actually the first thing I did when I got my first winXP computer was to reformat and wipe out the factory restore partition to gain some space as it was easiest way to wipe out all the crap installed at factory. Note I have full copy of XP so I don't need the factory restore partition, you may need it.
First copy everything you need to an external drive, preferably two of them so you have two copies. Be sure to have a copy for the display drivers for your video card.
Full reformat and install Windows. Be aware if you have a USB mouse/keyboard you *may* need a regular mouse/keyboard.
Install the drivers for the video card and set the display so your eyes don't bug out of your head.
Run Windows update.
Download and install any drivers you may need like for printers etc.
Install all your software.
Run CC cleaner to get rid of the crap, there is especially a lot of files generated from windows update that can be GB's.
Defragment even if it tells you that it's not needed.
Lastly copy your personal files to your computer.