Windows is a very complicated system, so there is bound to be a complication waiting to happen that could jeopardize system integrity, forcing you to reinstall the operating system. Most of us have been there, experiencing the inexplicable blue screen of death (BSOD) whenever attempting to boot a computer. This kind of thing might even happen in safe mode, giving you no other option than to throw everything away and start from scratch. As gruesome as the process is, it’s sometimes necessary and we’re here to give you some tips on the subject!
1. Did You Check Everything?
Make sure you’re not reinstalling Windows for a reason you can easily fix. If your computer is experiencing blue screens left and right, but you have no idea what’s happening, reinstalling your operating system might not solve the problem. First, check if your RAM has problems. For this, you can use memtest, a freeware application that allows you to test all of your RAM. If you get errors, try replacing the RAM and see if you have problems now. In such a case, reinstalling your operating system would have been a horrible waste of time and a mistake that could cost you some of your precious data, if not all of it.
Can you boot in safe mode? If you can, fix the problem there! This usually means that you have a service or program that starts up with your system that causes it to go kaput the moment you turn it on in a normal boot. Safe mode loads only the bare essentials. Try disabling services and programs using msconfig. Joshua Price already covered this in previous articles, just FYI.
2. Use a Cloud Backup Service
If you don’t have a spare hard drive, there’s no need to worry. Besides creating another logical partition from free space that remains on your hard drive, you can also use a Cloud backup service. The prices are relatively cheap and you could store a very hefty amount of data in them. You don’t need to shovel money at them to store data. In fact, some of them offer you up to 200 GB of free cloud storage as long as you contribute an equal amount to their networks. Remember to take at least a few hours looking through your drive to find things to back up. You might forget something and regret it later if you hurry. If your drive is inaccessible because of the problems you’re experiencing, use a live CD/DVD operating system like Ubuntu to recover the data.
3. Try to Fix the Problem
If you’re not getting a BSOD, but you’re getting tons of errors and/or weird behavior, you’re probably infected. Run a virus scan on your computer, just for the sake of hopefully finding something that you can actually fight against. If you don’t have a fighting chance, try System Restore. For future reference, create a restore point on your computer every time you install a program or execute something new. This helps prevent lots of headaches like these.
Calling All Experts!
If you have something to add to this, kindly add to the comments on how to deal with this particular situation so they don’t end up having to reinstall Windows every year.