Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 16
  1. #1
    4 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    412
    Thanks
    232
    Thanked 27 Times in 26 Posts

    Dell factory restore

    I just picked up Dell Dimension E521 Vista Home Premium SP2 desktop computer and I'd like to find out how to do a factory image restore as I've never done one before.
    I couldn't find the instructions in the manual so I tried this:
    Computer > Recovery (D > Explore > Tools > PCRestore > Run as administrator
    --- The program starts to format the hard disk but about 40% of the way it stops and an Error box shows up without any information in it so I cannot go any further from there
    At that time I was using the user administrator account
    --- So then I activated the Vista Administrator account using net user administrator /active:yes and the same thing happened.
    --- If I'm doing a wrong procedure, can you help me figure out how to do that the right way?
    --- I also went to the Dell website and used the service tag number all the computer does is churn even after an full hour
    --- I did run Malwarebytes Free in Full Scan to ensure the computer is clean

    My intent is to upgrade the OS to Windows 7 Home Premium but I thought it would be a good idea to have a clean Vista system until I get the Windows 7 Home Premium in

    On the bottom of the tower, there is a red label that reads Refurbished
    --- Is it possible that's why I can't do the factory image restore?

    The computer did come with with OS & Drivers and Utility discs so I can switch over to using them but I was to learn how a factory restore works

  2. #2
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    California & Arizona
    Posts
    5,484
    Thanks
    130
    Thanked 499 Times in 459 Posts
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Windows 8.1, 64 bit
    Motherboard: DX58SO2*Chipset: X58 Express/Intel ICH10*BIOS: SOX5820J.86A.0888.2012.0129.2203*Processor: Intel Core i7 CPU X 990
    GPU: Nvidia GTX 580*Memory: Corsair 12 GB, 4x3@1600*PSU: Corsair HX1000*Hard drives: REVO X2 160GB*OCZ VERT X3 120GB*5 mechanical storage drives (12 TB) total.

  3. #3
    Administrator
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    St Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    20,623
    Thanks
    2
    Thanked 627 Times in 560 Posts
    You need to invoke the restore when you are booting the system. See if Need to restore factory settings on dell dimension e521? helps.

    Joe

  4. #4
    Silver Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    2,133
    Thanks
    12
    Thanked 248 Times in 241 Posts
    If the hard drive was the problem and reason for refurbishment and it was not handled by the OEM then it is possible only a "refurbish" license disc was used for the install and no system recovery partition exists.

  5. #5
    4 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    412
    Thanks
    232
    Thanked 27 Times in 26 Posts
    The computer doesn't have the Dell PC Restore by Symantec
    Then I thought of pressing F1 for help and it gave instructions on how to get into the System Recovery options
    In my case here's what worked: Boot into Safe Mode > Select Advanced Boot Options > Select Repair your computer > follow the prompts to get to Dell Factory Image Restore
    --- Note: If the Repair your computer option isn't available, the computer does not include the System Recovery Options menu as a preinstalled recovery option
    --- In which case the instructions state the install disc is needed
    I am presently installing all of the Windows Updates
    When I'm done, I'll create a clean backup image
    --- Where did I learn that? From you guys naturally

  6. #6
    2 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    191
    Thanks
    8
    Thanked 43 Times in 37 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by cmptrgy View Post
    The computer doesn't have the Dell PC Restore by Symantec
    That's correct--the Dell/Symantec PC Restore only applied to systems that shipped with XP. Dell's Vista and Win7 recovery systems are fundamentally different. (The link Clint and Joe pointed you to is for the XP type of recovery system.)

    FTR, I documented the Dell/Symantec PC Restore system in all its gory detail here, and Dell's Vista layout briefly here. It sounds like in your case Dell's Plan A worked, but if it hadn't there was also a Plan B and my own Plan C.


    Dan
    Last edited by dg1261; 2014-03-06 at 17:11.

  7. The Following User Says Thank You to dg1261 For This Useful Post:

    cmptrgy (2014-03-16)

  8. #7
    4 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    412
    Thanks
    232
    Thanked 27 Times in 26 Posts
    Yesterday when I had completed the Vista install, a bunch of Windows Updates started downloading immediately.
    --- I do not like to install a bunch of them at once
    ------ When I know there are many Windows Updates to do, I like to install them in blocks
    --- I don't remember seeing anything informing me it was going to do so
    --- I would have liked to cancel the process but I don't know if it would have created any problems
    Would it have been safe to cancel the process?

  9. #8
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    California & Arizona
    Posts
    5,484
    Thanks
    130
    Thanked 499 Times in 459 Posts
    If I ever have to do a clean install, the very first thing I do is get a handle on WU among other things, and that means
    changing WU settings to a manual setting of "look but don't download".

    When WU is set to automatic it will not inform you prior to the downloads. You might only see a tray icon display
    while it is occurring.
    You could cancel the process, but you're still likely to get a few of the updates installed. (been there and done that too)
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Windows 8.1, 64 bit
    Motherboard: DX58SO2*Chipset: X58 Express/Intel ICH10*BIOS: SOX5820J.86A.0888.2012.0129.2203*Processor: Intel Core i7 CPU X 990
    GPU: Nvidia GTX 580*Memory: Corsair 12 GB, 4x3@1600*PSU: Corsair HX1000*Hard drives: REVO X2 160GB*OCZ VERT X3 120GB*5 mechanical storage drives (12 TB) total.

  10. The Following User Says Thank You to CLiNT For This Useful Post:

    cmptrgy (2014-03-07)

  11. #9
    Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    79
    Thanks
    5
    Thanked 11 Times in 10 Posts
    I believe that it is generally safe to cancel any download midstream.
    Consider that the writers of most SW know that you can have a power loss at any moment.
    You may have to clean up the shrapnel afterword but it won't fry the HW.

  12. #10
    4 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    412
    Thanks
    232
    Thanked 27 Times in 26 Posts
    I have seen some posts in which someone shut their computer off in the middle of WU's going on resulting in serious problems
    Cancelling WU's while in process came to my mind so that is why I had asked the question
    Thanks for your answers at it makes sense cancelling them is ok, I'll just make sure I do not shut the computer off until the cancellation process is completed

  13. #11
    Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    52
    Thanks
    3
    Thanked 6 Times in 6 Posts
    If you are planning to put Win 7 and you haven't really used it, why bother with all the Factory Image? Just do a clean install of Win 7 and have it format the drive in the process. If you just got this computer, there is nothing to save.

  14. #12
    4 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    412
    Thanks
    232
    Thanked 27 Times in 26 Posts
    miztrniceguy "If you are planning to put Win 7 and you haven't really used it, why bother with all the Factory Image? Just do a clean install of Win 7 and have it format the drive in the process. If you just got this computer, there is nothing to save"
    --- That's exactly what I would have done if it was only about me and my computer
    However, I have some friends who have Vista's that need to be Factory Imaged. They do not want to update to Windows 7 yet but want to have their computers back to new condition. Then I have a son and a cousin who want to have their Vista's eventually upgraded to Windows 7. So I am using this Vista computer to experiment on and that's why I mentioned "I'd like to find out how to do a factory image restore as I've never done one before" and I want it to be clean without everything that's been accumulated by the previous owner. On future Vista computers that come my way I will not have to go through what I'm doing on this one and I won't be "fudging" what I will need to do
    --- I volunteer at a non-profit organization and we get computers donated to us so we can provide families we help with good used/refurbished computers

  15. #13
    3 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    289
    Thanks
    2
    Thanked 27 Times in 27 Posts
    If you wish to avoid Windows Update at the beginning, simply unplug the network cable on the rear panel of the computer, or remove the wireless adapter if it's a USB plug-in, or temporarily turn off the router or internet modem until you have a chance to adjust the Windows Automatic Updates settings to your liking. This will avoid all those unwanted downlaods.

  16. #14
    4 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    London
    Posts
    531
    Thanks
    196
    Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
    With regard to installing the Windows updates on a new installation all at once or in batches, I have always opted for the former, knowing that certain updates need to be installed before later ones, and I have no idea which is which.

    Presumably Windows takes care of this, and anyway it quicker and easier to leave it to Windows. But then, I am no technician.

  17. #15
    4 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    412
    Thanks
    232
    Thanked 27 Times in 26 Posts
    As Clint had pointed out to me, I should have set my WU's preference ahead of time
    --- When I know there are "umpteen updates" to do, I like to do them in groups
    --- Granted "umpteen updates" is a subjective call but I like to know ahead of time what's due

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •