Never wanted to do this again - Windows Reinstall

Discussion in 'macOS' started by eAspenwood, May 3, 2006.

  1. eAspenwood macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #1
    After switching to Mac a couple a years ago, I hadn't really thought about one of the big benefits of the Mac platform until last night. The OS reinstall.

    My girlfriends dell laptop windows was struggling - thirty minutes to open up MS Word, networking going in and out, everthings slow. So I took on the windows reinstall, and even though everything went relatively smooth, it took 5 hours to get it running. A lot of time was spent on getting all the latest windows/office updates and finding the dell drivers for the laptop. Also, I had an issue where installing a wireless pc card was conflicting with the already installed ethernet port.

    So anyways, i'd forgotten about the hell that is a windows reinstall. Its not that this is Microsofts fault neccessarily. Its just the inherent entropy incurred when the hardware and the OS are not coming from the same source. Now, as for whether it is Microsofts fault that frequent reinstalls are needed to begin with - thats another issue.

    Anyways, nothing ground breaking here. Just needed a little venting and thought I'd give another shout out to this mac platform benefit.

    -- J.
     
  2. laidbackliam macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2006
    #2
    i reinstalled XP on my brothers desktop (my old computer, gave it to him when i bought my macbook), and my lord. 3 hours for an install, an hour and a half of which was trying to format the drive to allow it an install.


    it was ridiculous.
     
  3. Glen Quagmire macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #3
    Symantec Ghost is your friend. It takes me fifteen minutes for a full installation, including XP + SP2, Office 2003, SQL 2005 and Visual Studio 2005.

    XP does take a ridiculous amount of time to install and configure. Windows Vista is supposed to be much better in this regard (assuming it's ever released, that is).
     
  4. plinden macrumors 68040

    plinden

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2004
    #4
    Right now, before you or your gf does anything else with that computer, create a slipstreamed SP2 install disk. You are going to have to reinstall again, sooner or later, so do this now.

    Download nliteos and follow the instructions there.

    With SP2, you generally don't have to worry about drivers, so you'll be left with Windows updates. You can download the standalone hotfixes/updates and integrate them into the install disk using nliteos, but it can be hard to find them on the MS website.
     
  5. AlmostThere macrumors 6502a

    #5
    Why didn't Dell supply you with the drivers on CD when you bought the computer? :eek:

    And to defeat the pain of re-installing when this next happens, keep all your downloads! You can streamline drivers, patches and service packs onto a Windows install CD. Probably easiest way is found here http://www.nliteos.com/. If you are re-installing Windows on a machine regularly, it is well worth a little bit of effort.
     
  6. fuzzwud macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2004
    Location:
    Houston
  7. fuzzwud macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2004
    Location:
    Houston
    #7
    i can say that this was one reason i switched to the Mac several years ago. Problems with the PC were unbelievable. I wasted so much time and lost precious hours of sleep when I was in college. I also had a lot of problems with failing hardware components. One day, the floppy diskette drive failed but i couldn't figure out how to get to the screw that held it. It was blocked by the motherboard frame. So I had to figure that part out ... grief grief ...

    And then Apple came out with the G4 powermac towers with the easy open and close door. I was in awe and got one. I've upgraded that to a 1 Ghz G4 and it's still being used in our office. That computer is 7 yrs old, runs Panther and still works great.
     
  8. eAspenwood thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #8
    It was a laptop that had been through four owners: dad->mom->sister->girlfriend. The Dell install CD's had disappeared long ago. Even if I did have them, it would have been a good idea to get the updated version and fixes from the dell website anyways.

    Ghosting the computer is a good idea too, but in this case not applicable since I didn't manage the computer. These people aren't geeks like me and maybe you. They just use a computer for its features (word, email); don't spend any extra time tooling around on it. Crazy, I know.

    Both these issues point back to the fact that its simple to do the install with Apple. The onus is not as much on the end user to manage this aspect of computer ownership.

    Anyways, this should all be resolved soon cuz my plan is to get the gf a macbook whenever they come out, and live happily ever after. :)

    -- J.
     
  9. mmmcheese macrumors 6502a

    mmmcheese

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    #9
    I've had to reinstall OSX a few times...but not nearly as often as Windows, and even then, the process doesn't seem to take quite as long. I find there's a lot more tweaking I have to do with Windows than on OSX.
     
  10. plinkoman macrumors 65816

    plinkoman

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2003
    Location:
    New York
    #10
    just to play devils advocate for a second here.

    have you ever heard of a little utility in windows called msconfig? 9 times out of 10, when everything is bogged down as you described, it's because windows loads way more then it needs to on startup. just about every program you ever used on windows puts itself into it and it adds up. just hit start/run and type in msconfig, and then select 'selective startup', then go to the startup items tab, and start unchecking boxes(nothing crucial is in here aside from maybe an anti-virus program or something, so you don't need to worry about f***ing things up)

    it is completely retarded that everything gets added to the startup like that, and it's even more retarded that they don't put msconfig anywhere where its likely to be found, but thats windows for you.
     
  11. plinden macrumors 68040

    plinden

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2004
    #11
    Actually, I'd recommend not using msconfig. You can make your Windows unbootable if you don't know what you're doing.

    Use services.msc instead, and follow a guide like this.

    For example, you can disable all services in msconfig, but not in services.msc. If you disable the RPC service, you're screwed. services.msc doesn't allow that.
     
  12. eAspenwood thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #12
    Yeah, I thought about spending some time trying to diagnose all the issues, but given that it was a windows box being used out in the wild by non-techies for a couple years, I wasn't sure what kind of silly stuff could be going on (spy ware, bots, viruses, etc). A fresh install seemed like the best route cuz I could be sure after 5 hours I'd have a clean running machine.
     
  13. plinkoman macrumors 65816

    plinkoman

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2003
    Location:
    New York
    #13
    umm, if you only disable things in the startup tab on msconfig, you'll be fine. things in the startup tab aren't part of windows and aren't crucial; you can literally disable everything in the startup tab with no worries whatsoever.
     
  14. contoursvt macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2005
    #14
    XP SP 1a basic install takes about 20 minutes on my box, then about 10 mins to install SP2 and about 10 minutes to install a few drivers and a couple reboots. So basically I have a usable, stable and somewhat secure windows (minus the latest updates and fixes) in under an hour.

    I dont think this is any different than doing a proper OSX install, if anything, its a tad faster.
     
  15. contoursvt macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2005
    #15
    Actually disabling windows services could cause more problems than using msconfig and disabling startup items. Nothing in the startup folder is tied to things that can stop a computer from booting up or functioning where as services could have more critical items that can be disabled by accident - if a user doesnt know what they are really doing.
     

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