These guides assume you want to reformat your existing hard drive, on which you have already got windows, and that you have original copies of:
All discs for hardware
All discs for your software
It is a good idea to not all your hardware components and configurations. In particular what driver versions are needed for motherboards, sound, video, network and other cards.
The guide does not apply if you are using recovery software, where your windows and other software are stored in a hidden partition on your hard disk and activated by a single recovery disk supplied by your PC manufacturer.
Before reformatting, ensure you have secure backups of all your data, and that these backups are not on another part of your hard disks in the same PC.
For Windows 95/98
First of all you will need to boot your PC into Windows. Once you have done this, you need to go Start then shut down and select from the drop down menu "Restart in MS-DOS Mode."
Once you have done this, type cd\ and press enter. Then type format c: with a space in between the format and c. It will then ask you if you want to continue, just type y and then press enter.
Once this is done i always type c:\dir this is to make sure there is nothing on the drive.
For the next stage you MUST HAVE MS-DOS on floppy disks.
Staying in MS-DOS place in your floppy drive your MS-DOS disks to reinstall DOS on your system. Once the disk is in the drive press ctrl alt and del all at the same time. Once your computer restarts it should read the disk that is in the floppy drive and start to install MS-DOS. You will get a few prompts and then just let it install. After installation of DOS take the disk out the floppy drive and open your CD Rom drive and place your Windows CD in. then i usually type D:\ and then return but obiously substitute the letter for your drive. You will then get D:\ .
during the instal from floppy you MAY need to install your CD rom drivers. Make sure you have copies of these on another floppy disk, before you start the formatting process.
After this you will type setup. So you will have something that looks like this.
Setup for Windows 95/98 will then start and then just follow the on screen prompts.
For Windows ME
Just do the above again but with in Windows 95/98 open your CD-Rom drive and place the Windows ME disk in. You will then get and auto run box appear. Choose "install Windows ME."
Follow on screen prompts to set it up. Once installation is complete you WILL need to install all your applications and software for your hardware.
For Windows 2000
Within Windows 95/98/ME place your Windows 2000 in your CD Rom drive and follow on screen prompts to install Windows 2000.
For Windows XP Home/Professional
If you have the upgrade version just do the same when within Windows 95/98/ME/2000.
If you have the full version you will need to reformat your hard drive (Follow the part labelled Windows 95/98). After you have done this place your Windows XP CD in your CD Rom drive and press ctrl alt and del all at the same time and your cd rom drive should read the XP CD and start to install. Just follow the on screen prompts to install. For Windows XP you may find it best if your hard drives file system is NTFS. But dont worry if it is not.
Once you have your PC up and running, make sure that you promptly install and update your antivirus system, and any windows patches.
Originally posted by MadGamer
---------- Post added at 21:48 ---------- Previous post was at 21:24 ----------
The above guide may need a lot of editing / updating!