Is there another way to restore factory image from partition

April 18, 2017 at 11:45:43
Specs: Windows Vista
When going into the recovery options after hitting F8 and English keyboard and doing the login as administrator, 'Factory image restore' is not an option I can choose. I don't want to restore a data-safe backup, I want to format the drive and re-install the OS from the utility partition. Are there other steps I can take to manually format the drive (lets say from the command prompt) and then access the drive to manually re-install vista? Maybe there are some software administrator settings that are not activated which would let me access the factory image restore? Hoping someone has some ideas for me to try.

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April 18, 2017 at 13:11:32
You didn't post the make/model of your computer, the specs, or the reason why you want to format/reinstall. If you're going to go to that extreme, why not get rid of Vista & replace it with Windows 7? It's a much better OS with support until 2020. Support for Vista ended about a week ago.

If you insist on sticking with it, please post the make/model of your system so we can determine the proper reinstall procedure. Are you able to boot into Windows? Did you ever make the factory recovery disc set?

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April 18, 2017 at 14:22:54
My apologies, I put that information in boxes below the comments thinking it would show up.

It's a Dell Studio One 1909 with Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 3GHz CPU and 4GB Ram.

This is a workplace machine whose performance is now at the speed of molasses and no longer recognizes installed peripherals such as the printers even after attempts to uninstall/reinstall the needed software. As it is an older machine that has had a multitude of different software installed/deleted over the years, I was hoping a full format and reinstall might help with overall performance and give the computer a couple more years of functionality. This machine is mainly for document editing and workplace email for our shop foreman. The reason for sticking with Vista is all about cutting costs, I have the license and the product does the job...did anyway.

The information I have found for this system indicates there should a boot sequence on a partition that can be accessed. But when following a multitude of steps, do not reach the destination so commonly outlined where I should find a Factory Image restore. Dell no longer services this model so I was reaching out here for possible options without having to spend $ for a new OS. If I were to upgrade I would likely move away from Windows and put in a Linux based OS.

To paraphrase, from I do not have point 6. where I select Factory Image Restore. Am I hooped?

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April 18, 2017 at 14:43:02
The link you posted is my response to a similar question from 4 years ago.

"I do not have point 6. where I select Factory Image Restore"

Does it say "Dell Factory Tools" instead? Did you check to see if the Restore partition still exists? Have a look at the Recovery Options starting on page 37 of 62:

Windows 7 can be found for free if you know how & where to look. We're not allowed to discuss such things in these forums though. As for Linux, if you go that route, I recommend Mint or Zorin.

message edited by riider

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April 18, 2017 at 15:17:51
Thanks for your help, unfortunately there are no factory tools or recovery tools in the option. I am limited to restore a shadow backup and some performance analysis tools. This machine has had a multitude of malware in the past that may have buggered some root files but that just speculation. If I'm unable to get something productive going soon I will go ahead and manually fix/upgrade the system.

Thanks for the linux recommendations. Cheers

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April 18, 2017 at 18:17:26
One last possibility is downloading or borrowing a copy of Vista & doing a clean install using your legal key. Same goes for Windows 7. In fact, Microsoft offers free downloads of Win7 if you enter a legal key:

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