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  1. #1
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    Fresh install plus image restore

    I image my refurbished Win7 Pro computer (The HDD is only 120GB) on a monthly basis using Win7's built in utility to my external 1TB hard drive
    --- I like to keep the 2 latest images available so I rename each one from the default name WindowsImageBackup
    --- I fully tested my first image through the appropriate System Restore:System point and everything restored just fine
    I have read posts where someone reinstalls their OS once a year or some schedule that suits them
    I'm not saying I'm concerned about doing that but if it's beneficial I certainly wouldn't mind doing so
    What I don't know is, does that mean that after a fresh re-install, then using the latest backup image should take place
    Does this make sense?
    I do not have an original install disc but I do have a System Repair disc

    Well I do have a concern though for an infected computer
    Many of the volunteers at the non-profit organization I volunteer at seem to be related to many infections out there
    I have read that doing a fresh install cleans out the hard drive and there isn't any need to go about cleaning up the system first
    Is this true?
    How about rook kit infections? It sounds to me like it's a good idea to determine whether or not a root kit infection is involved
    I'm just paranoid about trying to do a fresh install or re-install onto an infected computer
    Oh another thought: what about the install media, DVD or flash drive, can't they be affected by an infection?

  2. #2
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    A root kit infection can only be removed by deleting all partitions on the hard disk and starting from scratch, either by using the OS install CD or by re-imaging the entire disk, not just a single partition.
    Note: malware scanners can also remove root kits, but who would want to trust them when you have an image to restore.

    cheers, Paul

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    cmptrgy (2015-01-09)

  4. #3
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    Question: Doesn't an image backup-restore replace all the junk that you just cleaned out with a system reinstall?

  5. #4
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    On the main drive yes, but if you do indeed have a rootkit, there is the potential of it spreading/securing itself on other internal, or external drives too.
    *If your image does not include ALL of the partitions on the main drive, then yes, you will be potentially at risk for re-infection.

    I have read that doing a fresh install cleans out the hard drive and there isn't any need to go about cleaning up the system first
    Is this true?
    For the most part YES, as long as the entire drive has been formatted, including "other" partitions as Paul mentioned.
    It need not be a full format, just as long as you check to see that it was actually done prior to installation of the OS.


    Oh another thought: what about the install media, DVD or flash drive, can't they be affected by an infection?
    Flash drives, yes potentially, if they are not write protected or you have been careless with them.
    Install media: unlikely if they are manufacture created.
    DVD's you've made: potentially so if you where not careful in their creation.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

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    cmptrgy (2015-01-09)

  7. #5
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    Hi Clint,

    I think you tried to answer my question and then cmptrguy's question. Maybe only cmptrgus. Anyway, my question was unrelated to having an infection. I just want to re-install WIN8.1 as maintenance. I thought I had to reinstall everything from scratch. If I can re-install and then do a disk image restore that would be great. So, my question above.

    Thanks so much for your input.

  8. #6
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Question: Doesn't an image backup-restore replace all the junk that you just cleaned out with a system reinstall?
    Apologies...
    A total system reinstall is the best imo (technically), but if you have a fresh and known good image,
    you'll also get everything on that image at the time you made it. It depends on how fastidious you are about cleaning.

    An image made "as close to" the actual clean install is better than one in which has been made after multiple Windows updates, or
    multiple program installs and uninstalls. I'm thinking the registry & the WinSxS folder never completely gets cleaned out,
    and it may be totally irrelevant too, but it may be a factor to those that are obsessive/compulsive about these things.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

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    cmptrgy (2015-01-09)

  10. #7
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    Thanks everyone; it gives me confidence to know that I'll be ok on my own pc since I keep it secure and very well maintained.

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