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Recovering the System after the Hard Drive Is Replaced (Windows Vista)

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This document applies to HP and Compaq desktop computers with Windows Vista.
This document describes how to reinstall all system and program files on an HP computer after the main hard drive has been replaced.

Before you begin

  • To avoid problems, install a hard drive as large or larger than the replaced hard drive.
  • To recover the computer after the hard drive has been replaced, you need a recovery disc set. You can use a set of discs that were made from your PC or a set that was ordered from HP.
    NOTE:Most HP computers with Windows Vista do not come with recovery discs in the box. To recover the computer, you must use recovery discs. If you do not have a set of recovery discs for your computer that came with Windows Vista, you need to: Obtain a recovery CD or DVD set and then Perform a full System Recovery in Windows Vista .

Step 1: Verify hard drive detection

Perform the following steps to determine if the hard drive is detected by the BIOS:
  1. Disconnect all devices from the computer except for the monitor, mouse, and keyboard.
  2. Remove all media, such as CDs, DVDs, Personal Media Drives, and flash memory cards, from the drives.
  3. Turn on the computer and press the F10 key repeatedly at the first screen to enter the BIOS Setup Utility.
  4. From the first screen (labeled Main), use the Up and Down Arrows and the Enter key to find and select 1st Drive or 2nd Drive or a similarly labeled menu item.
  5. Verify a hard drive name is listed next to 1st Drive or 2nd Drive:
    • If the text None is listed next to 1st Drive and 2nd Drive, the hard drive is not set up properly or is defective. Make sure the hard drive is correctly installed per the manufacturer's instructions.
    • If a hard drive name is listed, continue to the next step.

Step 2: Installing the original files from the recovery disc

Perform the following steps to restore the original files to the new hard drive.
  1. Place the first recovery disc in the top CD or DVD drive and turn on the computer.
    Recovery Manager opens.
  2. Follow the directions on each screen to recover the hard drive.
    The recovery process may take a long time to complete, over an hour. Stay near the computer while the recovery process runs.
  3. If you have more than one recovery disc, remove and insert discs when prompted.
  4. When the recovery process is finished, remove the disc(s) and answer any questions that appear. Read all screens carefully.
  5. Restart the computer when prompted.
    Windows setup can take a long time. Be patient while setup completes.
  6. After System Recovery is complete, refer to the following HP support document for more important tasks that need to be done: Windows Vista: Things You Should Do When Setting Up Your PC .

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