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What things should I backup before reinstalling Windows 7 off my hard disk?

What things should I backup before reinstalling Windows 7 off my hard disk?

I'm using Windows 7 Ultimate version for a month. I was wondering what files/folders should I backup off my hard disk before I reinstall Windows 7. With Windows XP (the version that I was using last 8 years), I would need to reinstall XP once every 3/4 months. Of course, I backup files/folders of the partition which I uses as system drive before formatting it. Beside that, encrypted files/folders in other partitions should be backed up in unencrypted format. Is there anything else that should be backed up off hard disk?

Asked by: Guest | Views: 89
Total answers/comments: 2
Guest [Entry]

"I'm a big fan of imaging the whole hard drive so you can't forget anything. If the new install goes horribly wrong (hardware incompatability, etc), you can just re-apply your old system back from the backup (fast). When you install the new operating system, mount the image as a virtual drive and start copying your documents, etc.

Some data is more difficult to recover from a backup so you should consider these ahead of time:

A list of software on your system and where you can reinstall from (web site, CD (with keys), etc)
Configuration settings for specific programs
Registration keys
Drivers
Email
Web favorites/bookmarks

Essentially, I run through each program installed on my system one at a time and note any possible customizations or specific data I need to recover when I do a fresh install."
Guest [Entry]

"You don't have to back anything up. If you do a full ""clean"" install of Windows 7, it will keep everything on your hard drive, except for:

C:\Users
C:\Program Files
C:\ProgramData
C:\Windows

which get moved to:

C:\Windows.old\Users
C:\Windows.old\Program Files
C:\Windows.old\ProgramData
C:\Windows.old\Windows

to make way for the new clean versions of those folders. Vista did the same thing during full install - it leaves everything in place, except for tucking away those four folders out of the way.

But if you insist on backing something up to external storage, then backup

C:\Users\Donotalo

All your documents, files, torrents, downloads, e-mails, favorites, rss feeds, Skype conversations, Messenger pics, porn, and application data are stored in there."