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How to restore Windows 7 Ultimate - no CD

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January 22, 2013 6:49:59 AM

Hey everyone,

I have a home built Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit SP1 computer that I am in the process of selling. I bought this computer from someone who had built it themselves and so they fresh installed windows 7 ultimate 64 bit SP1 and provided me with a working product key.

I am wondering if there is any way that I can restore the machine without having to do a fresh install of windows 7 because I have lost the product key, I don't have an install disc, and I have lost contact with the original owner.

I have seen some threads and videos where you go to Control Panel > System and Security > Backup and Restore and there is an option to restore to factory but for me it says I require an install disc.

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If, however, there is no way to restore the computer to factory settings what would be the NEXT best thing I can do. As far as a program or some steps that I can take to wipe personal data and files from the computer so I don't have to worry about my personal information having the possibility of being "dug-up," by the next owner.

I encourage any and all advice, what would you do in my situation if you had no install disc and did not have the 25 digit product key.

Thank you! :bounce: 

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a b B Homebuilt system
a b $ Windows 7
January 22, 2013 7:31:46 AM

Quote:
I encourage any and all advice, what would you do in my situation if you had no install disc and did not have the 25 digit product key.


Uninstall the hard drive with your data.
Purchase and install a new hard drive.
Purchase and install a new operating system.

Your data is secure and you have a fully operational (and 100% legitimate) system to sell.

-Wolf sends
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January 22, 2013 7:51:45 AM

Wolfshadw said:
Quote:
I encourage any and all advice, what would you do in my situation if you had no install disc and did not have the 25 digit product key.


Uninstall the hard drive with your data.
Purchase and install a new hard drive.
Purchase and install a new operating system.

Your data is secure and you have a fully operational (and 100% legitimate) system to sell.

-Wolf sends


Thank you for the response wolf,

I am currently in the process of moving places and am tight on money so for me taking those steps would set me back more than I like. My personal information, yes important, however not abundant or serious enough where I would REALLY be worried about someone digging it up.

I guess I am looking for a preferably free, online, download a program sort of fix which will delete the majority of the junk files, registry related things or anything else which would bring the computer as close to "factory" settings as possible without going out to buy more stuff.
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January 22, 2013 8:09:20 AM

Yeah, I think you are out of luck. I have never heard of a program that does that exactly. Uninstall all programs and run Crap Cleaner

http://www.piriform.com/ccleaner

It will clean the reg and get some of the old files out. Won't be factory, but should be good enough.
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a b B Homebuilt system
a b $ Windows 7
January 22, 2013 8:19:59 AM

Control Panel ---> Add/Remove Programs will get rid of installed programs.
A Registry Cleaner will clean up the registry, but I don't know which ones are any good anymore.
As for removing junk/abandoned files, I don't know of any program that will do that.

-Wolf sends
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a b B Homebuilt system
a c 395 $ Windows 7
January 22, 2013 8:32:47 AM




Piracy

When someone installs and uses commercial software without paying for the program, it is called "pirating" the software. This name comes from the traditional meaning of the word "pirate," which is a sea-faring criminal that steals and loots belongings from others. But far from the stereotypical sea pirate, a software pirate can be anyone who owns a computer. Software piracy is committed by simply downloading or copying a program that a user has not paid for.

Since computer programs are stored in a digital format, they are easy to copy and reproduce. For example, a game may be burned to a CD and transferred to the computer of an individual who has not paid for the program. Software programs can also be illegally downloaded from the Internet from unauthorized sources. Since pirating software does not require many resources, it has grown into a major problem for the computer industry.

While it may seem like an innocuous act, pirating software is the same as stealing. Software companies often invest thousands or even millions of dollars into creating the programs they sell. The income from selling these programs is what allows companies to produce the software and to continue improving the programs we use. Just because it is possible to copy a software program does not mean it is OK. Installing a commercial program from an illegal copy is the same thing as walking out of a store with the program and not paying for it.

While there are some programs that are free to use (such as shareware and freeware programs), it is important to pay for commercial software. You can avoid software piracy by only downloading software from authorized sources and making sure that you have valid software licenses for all the programs you use. Remember that paying for software programs supports the software industry, which is good for all of us!


techterms.com
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a b B Homebuilt system
a c 395 $ Windows 7
January 22, 2013 8:33:13 AM

This topic has been closed by SR-71 Blackbird
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a b B Homebuilt system
a c 395 $ Windows 7
January 22, 2013 8:33:22 AM

Best answer selected by SR-71 Blackbird.
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