I was with a Friend today fixing her PC. It wouldn’t boot up and the “Repair your computer” options under the F8 menu couldn’t help solve the issue. The manufacturer had provided her with a factory Image to restore do but you can only start the restore from in Windows. (not from the recovery options that said “restore from a system image that you’ve created”). Why are manufacturers going down this route? Disks are they only full proof way to reinstall Windows, why should we pay 100’s or 1000’s for PC’s and not get disks. :o
You wouldn’t ever want to buy a copy of office have it installed on your system and then find you couldn’t have a disk.
They’ve been doing that for years now. I couldn’t believe it when it was my time to re-format my brother’s PC 88). The manufacturer basically said the all the necessary drivers and restore files are on the other partition…
Well, it certainly didn’t help before I remember wiping all partitions with the previous reformat 88). I don’t remember exactly, but I think I had to grab an XP CD from a co-worker or something like that.
All the major PC makers like HP, Dell, Acer, Gateway, Emachines, etc., who provide computers to retail outlets, do not give you Windows disks. This has been the case for more than 5 years now. Some don’t even give you recovery disks, you have to make them yourself. They will include a recovery partition on the HD that in many cases can exceed 20gb in size and includes the OS and all necessary drivers as well as whatever bundled software they provide. When you encounter a problem with Windows, there really is no way to repair the OS that works reliably so you usually have to use the manufacturer’s recovery option that wipes the machine clean and restores it to the condition it was when you bought it. These PC makers don’t have a seperate Windows disk for every machine they produce. They use a master disk set with unlimited license capabilities and they pay MS for each copy they install and license for the end users. In essence, they can’t give you what they themselves do not have.
That’s why it is imperative to make the recovery disk set if it is not provided. If you later have a problem, you are provided with two recovery options, to recover from the recovery partition on the HD or when that is not possible, to use the recovery disk set which in most cases you have had to create yourself. The manufacturers will also provide you with a recovery set but usually at a cost. You may even get the option to try to repair Windows but in my experience, that usually doesn’t work and you have to do a destructive recovery which resets the machine back to the state it was in when it left the factory. You get the OS without all the updates since you bought the machine, plus the default drivers and all the preinstalled software that you probably will uninstall 90% of like you did the first time. You will lose all data so you’d better have backups on line or on other media. You should not have to get a Windows disk from anywhere else unless you want to (as I did) install the OS without all the bloatware and wasted HD space taken by the recovery partition. If you do that though, you will have to obtain the drivers for all the hardware yourself or let Windows find them for you which it can’t always do. Laptops especially may have problems getting the drivers to make everything work correctly.
I think that no one should ever buy a computer with a hidden restore partition or, similar, a “master boot cd”, and i never did.
You can still find computers with oem windows version on a cd, but even in such a situation, such computers often have a proprietary bios forbidding you to format them or to change some hardware device and to install the os of your choice.
One should have, if he can’t manage to get one with a new computer, his own windows cd bought wherever he wants (remember that krosoft also cheats, and that buying a keyboard is enough to be entitled for oem), and that he shall be able to install in the future to another computer if the first one fails.
Or no windows cd at all: the user should be entitled to install on a new computer whatever he wants, and why not Linux and not Windows?
The two last computers i bought had for one only Caldera Dos loaded (resulting from a mistake from the vendor, i had said “nothing at all”) and for the other…nothing at all:
it is always better to get a computer manufactured according to your own directives, as it shall have only the hardware and software YOU need, and thus be more performant and less expensive.
This being said, these ■■■■■ “restore partitions” allow you to make a cd from the said partition, and one is very inconsequent if it was not the first thing he did when powering the computer.
Another issue is like with my acer on Vista before getting a Windows 7 Disc and upgrading it is that the system image is around 22GB, thats a lot of DVD’s :o, And it only prompted me once at the first start up, and never again. Also all the manufacturers that have provided me with discs I think it was only Dell, did give me a Drivers media too.
Even if it doesn’t prompt you, you can still find the program to create the disks in your all programs list but you can only do it once. The latest machine bought for this home, a basic Emachines from Best Buy, came with a defective recovery creation package. I contacted them through live chat and they directed me to a patch that did not fix the problem. I contacted them again and they said because it was a known problem, they would send me a recovery set at no charge instead of the $20 they would normally get. They did so very quickly.
Some manufacturers will provide the recovery set in the box when you buy the machine but that is becoming more and more rare. Some have provided the drivers on a seperate disk but that it also rare.
My next PC will probably come from a company like Cyberpower or IbuyPower who give you a machine with only the OS and drivers preinstalled (or even nothing installed if you prefer) and give you the necessary media to reinstall if necessary. No recovery partitions or bloatware you will probably never use and the actual Windows media used to set things up. Their prices are also very reasonable. In many cases, you can’t build the machine yourself for any less, especially if you buy it on Newegg. They also use high quality components and not the generic stuff most of the major companies put in their products.