Questions

How often do you reformat your personal computer?

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How often do you reformat your personal computer?

Paper_boy558
Personally in the past i often formatted my laptop every two months or so because i often experimented with the operating system and broke something or just trying out a new setup. Currently i haven't formatted for almost year because 1: I don't see the need right now. 2: I don't have enough backup space to backup everything that is on my machine. What is your reason for reformatting (or not) your personal machine?
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    0 Votes
    dogknees

    I've never needed to re-install Windows on my home PC. Even after 6 years my last one ran well and was stable.

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    0 Votes
    Paper_boy558

    WOW u should get a medal! lol

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    1 Votes
    UMzY

    Format is not required if you really understand OS very well
    Please follow following few tips
    Keeping system upto date.
    Defrag File System every week or once in fortnight.
    At least run scandisk once in 6 month
    Frequently clear temporary files by running System cleanup utility
    Before install any driver ensure you are 100% what you are installing
    Same hold true for any non standard software
    Try to use default application As far as possible
    Always log on to system using standard user account rather than Admin account
    Make single partition rather than multiple unless reason to do so

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    1 Votes
    Stephen Wheeler

    Reformatting the OS disc is a huge job, so I avoid it like the plague! Re-installing the OS means:
    - Cleaning up (e.g. deleting outdated and duplicate files), then backing up user(s) data (>1 hr. per user)
    - Backing up application data (e.g. browser settings and bookmarks - 1/2 hr. per user, not including the time taken to persuade other users to get on with it. Thankfully this activity is becoming obsolete as the price and capacity of laptops has improved so much and application writers have made backing up simpler)
    - Cataloging all frequently used applications and extensions - then making sure you have the latest versions on removable media (6 to 8 hrs.) - or licence information and download locations if you want to download
    - Cataloging all drivers and making sure you have the latest versions on removable media. The last time I did a OS re-install I assumed that a printer driver would be available on-line. Wrong! The manufacturer had withdrawn support for the printer and I could not find a replacement - cost: 1 new printer! (5 to 6 hrs)
    - Re-format disc and partition if wanted (highly variable depending on size and speed of disc(s), but lets say 2 hrs)
    - Install operating system (>2 hrs last time I tried)
    - Configure OS (>2 hrs last time).
    - Instal security apps. (Firewall, Anti-V, Anti-S,) and configure (1 to 2 hrs).
    - Instal major apps. (Browser, Office Automation, Media Player, programming tools, mail extension, softphone, Adobe readers / players, etc. (again highly variable but the last time I had to do this it took at least 3 hrs)
    - Launch each major application and re-install extensions and settings (last time this took me, on a single user system, about 4 1/2 hrs).
    - Instal frequently used minor applications and drivers such as printers, external drives, Scanner, MP3 player, Dig. Camera, etc. and test all hardware (about another 5 hours).
    - Put back data (about an hour per user).
    - Optional: Scan & Defrag - another 6 to 8 hours.

    I therefore, conservatively, estimate that it will take me 40 hours to re-instal my OS. Some people will say that this can be reduced by good housekeeping - which is true, but not by much in the overall scheme of things.

    As my last re-instal demonstrates, it must be done properly or you can find yourself shelling out for some serious costs (lost printer driver = new printer and ink).

    Some of my times may seem a little long to some people - I think my HD may be underpowered for the number of apps I ask it to run, but otherwise I stand by them.

    Also, like most people, I don't always fully document and re-instal every setting and application. Usually this is because time is too short. I (therefore) always end up losing productivity (or leisure) time in addition to the above. This lost time later - when you have to try and remember how you did it before - sometimes means finding and re-installing some obscure minor app.. These are particularly bothersome because they take so long and you always find out when you have a deadline!

    If you keep your security software up-to-date, and scan and defrag your media on a regular basis re-installing the OS should really only be necessary for tech guys who need to experiment with OSs, and people recovering from virusi or cack-handed users.

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    0 Votes
    spcecil

    Really? 40 hours? I can completly reformat and install my system in maybe 3. its easy, buy an external HDD, and automatically backup as you go. then when you feel its time to reformat, do it; and when your done you have a clean OS and all your docs/data are still where you left them.

    If you dont want to buy and external, just partition off however much space you need in your current HDD, when you reformat your OS it will not effect this space; only your primary partiton (or whatever partition you select actually)

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    0 Votes
    sarah

    My windows 7 pc has been as good as gold, so...but I do regular maintenance and keep it up to date. I spend so much time rebuilding the families pc's because they manage to get them infected, fill up the hard drive or install so much rubbish software on them they become so slow they are almost unusable.

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    0 Votes
    oldbaritone

    When intermittent bugs start slowing the system down noticeably, it's time for a reinstall. Don't need to fully format, but a periodic "full reinstall" without format makes Windows easier to tolerate. Nuke the C:\WINDOWS directory, boot from CD/DVD and install. Then just move the data like (My Documents, etc.) to the newly-created user directory.

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    1 Votes
    corporategeek

    With modern operating systems & hardware - the need to re-format appears so rarely. Maybe maximum once per year - in case I managed to screw up the whole system. Windows 7 is very solid and can take almost anything. Same with the other operating systems.

    Anyone remembers the days of Windows 98? :)

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    1 Votes
    josesche

    I take pride in keeping my PCs sweet running with just some TLC. Even malware can be removed without needing to reformat... just google the symptoms... has never let me down.

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    0 Votes
    bigjude

    It's close to 15 years since I've reformatted any of our home computers, probably because they've always had regular maintenance. These days the family all run Norton 360 automatically configured which cuts out most of the work.

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    1 Votes
    timk63

    In the past I would normally format my windows computer every six months or so. Now that my wife uses the computer more then I do, and I use my Linux box I have not needed to format the windows or the Linux computer. For a windows computer it a good rule to format it every year at least.

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    0 Votes
    dayen

    I format only new drives when I re-install windows I put in a new drive that way I DON'T LOSE ANYTHING THE CLIENT HAS. If they say it missing I put in the old drive and say were is the file, want to bet it was never on the local machine (if the old drive bad I recover what I can and keep drive safe all recover data goes on different drive) lost data = lost client
    Forgot to add I do this for my personal computers as well I have 5

  • +
    0 Votes
    dogknees

    I've never needed to re-install Windows on my home PC. Even after 6 years my last one ran well and was stable.

    +
    0 Votes
    Paper_boy558

    WOW u should get a medal! lol

    +
    1 Votes
    UMzY

    Format is not required if you really understand OS very well
    Please follow following few tips
    Keeping system upto date.
    Defrag File System every week or once in fortnight.
    At least run scandisk once in 6 month
    Frequently clear temporary files by running System cleanup utility
    Before install any driver ensure you are 100% what you are installing
    Same hold true for any non standard software
    Try to use default application As far as possible
    Always log on to system using standard user account rather than Admin account
    Make single partition rather than multiple unless reason to do so

    +
    1 Votes
    Stephen Wheeler

    Reformatting the OS disc is a huge job, so I avoid it like the plague! Re-installing the OS means:
    - Cleaning up (e.g. deleting outdated and duplicate files), then backing up user(s) data (>1 hr. per user)
    - Backing up application data (e.g. browser settings and bookmarks - 1/2 hr. per user, not including the time taken to persuade other users to get on with it. Thankfully this activity is becoming obsolete as the price and capacity of laptops has improved so much and application writers have made backing up simpler)
    - Cataloging all frequently used applications and extensions - then making sure you have the latest versions on removable media (6 to 8 hrs.) - or licence information and download locations if you want to download
    - Cataloging all drivers and making sure you have the latest versions on removable media. The last time I did a OS re-install I assumed that a printer driver would be available on-line. Wrong! The manufacturer had withdrawn support for the printer and I could not find a replacement - cost: 1 new printer! (5 to 6 hrs)
    - Re-format disc and partition if wanted (highly variable depending on size and speed of disc(s), but lets say 2 hrs)
    - Install operating system (>2 hrs last time I tried)
    - Configure OS (>2 hrs last time).
    - Instal security apps. (Firewall, Anti-V, Anti-S,) and configure (1 to 2 hrs).
    - Instal major apps. (Browser, Office Automation, Media Player, programming tools, mail extension, softphone, Adobe readers / players, etc. (again highly variable but the last time I had to do this it took at least 3 hrs)
    - Launch each major application and re-install extensions and settings (last time this took me, on a single user system, about 4 1/2 hrs).
    - Instal frequently used minor applications and drivers such as printers, external drives, Scanner, MP3 player, Dig. Camera, etc. and test all hardware (about another 5 hours).
    - Put back data (about an hour per user).
    - Optional: Scan & Defrag - another 6 to 8 hours.

    I therefore, conservatively, estimate that it will take me 40 hours to re-instal my OS. Some people will say that this can be reduced by good housekeeping - which is true, but not by much in the overall scheme of things.

    As my last re-instal demonstrates, it must be done properly or you can find yourself shelling out for some serious costs (lost printer driver = new printer and ink).

    Some of my times may seem a little long to some people - I think my HD may be underpowered for the number of apps I ask it to run, but otherwise I stand by them.

    Also, like most people, I don't always fully document and re-instal every setting and application. Usually this is because time is too short. I (therefore) always end up losing productivity (or leisure) time in addition to the above. This lost time later - when you have to try and remember how you did it before - sometimes means finding and re-installing some obscure minor app.. These are particularly bothersome because they take so long and you always find out when you have a deadline!

    If you keep your security software up-to-date, and scan and defrag your media on a regular basis re-installing the OS should really only be necessary for tech guys who need to experiment with OSs, and people recovering from virusi or cack-handed users.

    +
    0 Votes
    spcecil

    Really? 40 hours? I can completly reformat and install my system in maybe 3. its easy, buy an external HDD, and automatically backup as you go. then when you feel its time to reformat, do it; and when your done you have a clean OS and all your docs/data are still where you left them.

    If you dont want to buy and external, just partition off however much space you need in your current HDD, when you reformat your OS it will not effect this space; only your primary partiton (or whatever partition you select actually)

    +
    0 Votes
    sarah

    My windows 7 pc has been as good as gold, so...but I do regular maintenance and keep it up to date. I spend so much time rebuilding the families pc's because they manage to get them infected, fill up the hard drive or install so much rubbish software on them they become so slow they are almost unusable.

    +
    0 Votes
    oldbaritone

    When intermittent bugs start slowing the system down noticeably, it's time for a reinstall. Don't need to fully format, but a periodic "full reinstall" without format makes Windows easier to tolerate. Nuke the C:\WINDOWS directory, boot from CD/DVD and install. Then just move the data like (My Documents, etc.) to the newly-created user directory.

    +
    1 Votes
    corporategeek

    With modern operating systems & hardware - the need to re-format appears so rarely. Maybe maximum once per year - in case I managed to screw up the whole system. Windows 7 is very solid and can take almost anything. Same with the other operating systems.

    Anyone remembers the days of Windows 98? :)

    +
    1 Votes
    josesche

    I take pride in keeping my PCs sweet running with just some TLC. Even malware can be removed without needing to reformat... just google the symptoms... has never let me down.

    +
    0 Votes
    bigjude

    It's close to 15 years since I've reformatted any of our home computers, probably because they've always had regular maintenance. These days the family all run Norton 360 automatically configured which cuts out most of the work.

    +
    1 Votes
    timk63

    In the past I would normally format my windows computer every six months or so. Now that my wife uses the computer more then I do, and I use my Linux box I have not needed to format the windows or the Linux computer. For a windows computer it a good rule to format it every year at least.

    +
    0 Votes
    dayen

    I format only new drives when I re-install windows I put in a new drive that way I DON'T LOSE ANYTHING THE CLIENT HAS. If they say it missing I put in the old drive and say were is the file, want to bet it was never on the local machine (if the old drive bad I recover what I can and keep drive safe all recover data goes on different drive) lost data = lost client
    Forgot to add I do this for my personal computers as well I have 5