Thomas A. Roll
Computer Training and Service
716 3931071

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DETAILS: Hard Drive Installation or Reload.


Your hard drive has crashed you may need a data recovery service. Backing Data is another issue and must be addressed first!

I take your computer to my bench, hooking up to high speed internet to download drivers and updates.
A complete system reload is indicated after catastrophic loss of data due to hard drive failure, deliberate or accidental erasing (format), or when you are just so sick of your computer running poorly and you have tried everything else to get it running well again.
When the complete system reload is finished, your computer will run you original Windows Program or an upgrade if you choose that option (Upgrade from Windows 98 to Windows XP is about $100.00 fully legal with CD, sticker and activation). 
Your internet service will be re-installed and configured, and you office productivity software will be reloaded. I mm happy to install any software included with your computer. (for example Microsoft Works Suite, Corel WordPerfect Office or Microsoft Office). 
Configuring printers, scanners and other devices are extra. I do not install or support bootlegged software.

If your old files and data was not backed up but is still valid and readable, I can save it to a CD(s) for you, but there will be an extra charge based on $35.00 per hour for search, transfer and recording, but the data will be placed back on your hard drive when the reload is completed..

These are the steps I typically take: I will be happy to teach you to do the same thing.


  1. Start the computer and download or update and run antivirus software to look for viruses and worms. 
    Clean and or delete infected files if possible.

  2. Examine the drive contents and note the location of personal folders, documents,  pictures, email and email settings, internet favorites, music files and other personal data.

  3. Make a copy of your data on a separate hard drive. After the reload is successfully completed, you data will be erased from my equipment.

  4. If not present, a network Interface Card (NIC) is installed in the computer for high speed connection to the internet after Windows or other Operating System is installed all important updates and antivirus downlaods, and also for file transfer on my LAN. 
    You may purchase this card for about 20 dollars if you desire, or I will remove it.

  5. After your files are backed up, the system is then subjected to a low-level format which destroys all existing file directory structures on the computer. 
    In all practicality, the hard drive information is completely lost, and with it, viruses and other problems. Data Recovery

  6. FOR windows 98 machines: Use FDISK to examine and adjust  the hard drive structure and set it for File Allocation Table 32.
    Inside every hard drive, there are clusters. The larger the partition, the bigger the cluster size. Many people resort to partition their hard drive into smaller partitions to reclaim wasted cluster disk space. FAT32 reduces the cluster size so you don't have to partition your hard drive to save disk space.
    FOR Windows XP machines, the choice is clear between FAT32 and NTSF (New Technology File System).
    Unless the computer MUST run older programs incompatible with the NTSF type hard drive format, the faster, stronger, better NTFS partition should be used.

  7. When the hard drive is low-level formatted, the process creates a file system and directory structure where the Operating System, Program files, and data are stored.

  8. The system  is restarted and the BIOS  (Basic Input and Output System) is set so the computer will read from the CD Rom drive so that Windows can be installed.

  9. Next, the Windows or CD is placed in the CD ROM Drive. NOTE: A VALID AND LEGAL COPY OF WINDOWS IS REQUIRED. The computer is started and the CD boot disk provide options for the Windows installation. The Windows operating system files are copied to the hard drive and Windows is installed.

  10. Windows XP gives several options for booting and installation. Follow the  screen directions during the process.

  11. When Windows is finished its installation process, CDs or with drivers for the network card, sound card, modem, video card, and other devices may be required to make these devices function. Without the CD or floppies form the manufacturer, you need to know how to find the drivers on the web. It is usually easy for most devices to go the the manufacturer's web site, click support, and look for drivers and updates, then download the drivers. But this is usually where the cost of the reload is realized. this can be a fustrating process. I have had to get out magnifying glasses to see the numbers on chips inside a computer, but most modern machines have very good recovery cd sets or driver cds included with the computer or on a special recovery partition. Frequently people do not have any idea where to look on the CD for the drivers or how to install them correctly. Aren't you glad it is costing only $100.00? The computer's manufacturer's website is a good source for needed driver files, if you know how to identify the device and driver you need.

  12. The Network card drivers are installed first so the computer can connect to the Internet to download missing driver files and important Windows security updates and patches. Usually the computer must download about 300 MB of files to be brought up to date, and must be restarted about 6 times during the Windows Update process.

  13. The Antivirus software is loaded onto the computer. Norton costs about 50 dollars and McAfee costs about 50 bucks. So take your pick. AOL offers free antiviru with a free account but it does not provide internet access for free. If your antivirus software license subscription is current, I will reload it and update the virus information files. free antivirus software link.

  14. You personal files and data previously saved is transferred to your new Windows installation. AOL or other email accounts are set up again, but might no be complete until a password is supplied.

New Hard Drive:

When a new hard drive is purchased, it is typically faster, bigger and healthier than the old drive in the computer. Therefore it should be configured as the primary drive, the BOOTING drive C:\.

Often a new hard drive should be attached as the sole, primary drive on the system, and the Windows operating system should be installed onto the drive. The old drive can often be connected using an external US adapter.

After all drivers and devises are installed and working, the second, former primary drive is reattached and primary SLAVE and My Documents, etc are copied for the old drive to the new drive.

After all old data is on the new drive, and confirmation saved data is made, the old dive is typically formatted and used for secondary backup of the new primary drive.

Thomas A. Roll
Computer Training and Service