Wipe Clean and Start Over for Beginning User

I need to completely wipe clean (re-format?) my Gateway PC and then re-install the very basics (Outlook, IE). This laptop is going to a extreme novice user for just the basics. Currently I have a ton of web developing tools and web designing tools loaded. I have run Belarc for a list of software licenses (for my new pc) and made a copy of all executables. Please advice what steps I need to insure a bare as minimum pc for the novice and what I need to make copies of for a clean start on my winderful new laptop.

Thanks in advance.
katiewebster7Asked:
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WakeupConnect With a Mentor Commented:
As stated already by 97WideGlide, executables wont necessarily get you going.  You will have missed a lot of files. IE: Microsoft Office, or Word if you will...just coping word.exe does not guarantee you that it is going to run on the new computer.  That being said you should as stated by 97, is to copy your Data....Etc... I wont go into any more detail on that as it has already been said by 97.  
What I will say is that if your System is a Windows TABLET PC.....make sure you have RECOVERY disks or Reinstall Disks to wipe the drive and reinstall.
Otherwise if you do not, You may lose use of the Tablet portion of the laptop.  The Tablet PC may have a recovery partition on the hard drive, which you may be able to use to reimage the drive that way.  You will want to consult your manual and such to make sure that this is true etc.
Also if you have no recovery partition and  no Media to recover or reimage the drive, you will need to find replacement Tablet PC installation disks.  Of which are Very rare and hard to come by.
Ebay is about the best source these days.  And usually cost you as much for the disks as it would cost you to pay for the license and disks.
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97WideGlideConnect With a Mentor Commented:
You should use the original media CD to completely reinstall Windows by booting from the CD and formatting the hard drive.  
Regarding your new laptop.  I wouldn't bother copying executables.  Save only your user data, i.e. text documents, database files, web sites you have designed, etc and then reinstall whatever programs you had using the respective software's installation program.

Most programs require registry entries, etc and trying to move these to a new computer or expecting the executables to work without them would be difficult.
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nobusConnect With a Mentor Commented:
you can find all your drivers here, for your laptop :  http://support.gateway.com/s/Mobile/Q106/Viper/5945nv.shtml
put them on a cd, so you can install them back, if you wide your disk and do a fresh install.
you will need all the application cd's, as said above.
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nobusCommented:
The other way to go, is uninstalling everything that is not needed from add/remove programs, and do a complete disk and registry cleanout
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24playCommented:
Sys restore? See how far it goes back it may go all the way to day 1 and you can just restoe it like that
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WakeupCommented:
System restore wont wipe out data.  Nor will it wipe out programs or viruses and spyware etc.

So you can go that route...But dont think it will have day 1 settings...all that would really do anyway is take it back to day one as far as updates and such goes...and you might lose the use of some programs due to those updates etc.
If you are going that route, do as Nobus says remove and uninstall progs and data that is not needed....and go from there.

Also realize with todays day and age of ID Theft, if you are giving the laptop to a family member or a trust worthy friend etc, then you might be fine doing the uninstall method and such....
If you plan to sell the laptop...you might just replace the drive and reinstall (as this would assure you that the drive is clean from any info.)  Not to mention even if you erase/formatt and 0 wipe a drive, I have tools that I know that are available on the internet to undo what some of the formatting 0 wipeing and erasing can cause.  
So be careful!
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Fred MarshallPrincipalCommented:
Why bother to reformat at all if the only issue is simplicity?

Hide everything that's on the computer and be done with it.

Delete all the icons on the desktop except IE and Outlook.

Set up the Start folder to start them at boot so they are running from scratch.

That said: Why complicated Outlook and not Outlook Express??

etc. etc.
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WakeupCommented:
fmarshall:
Some people think outlook is the same thing as outlook express.  Anyway, hiding everything is not always optimal.  Depends on what the end user is going to be doing, also it depends on who the user is.  The asker did not state that this was to simplify.  Only asked what to do because the laptop is going to be transfering hands.  So some more questions: Does the asker trust the person that this laptop is going to?  If the asker has personal or secretive or secure data that is confidential, just Hiding it is not being responsible with their own data.  IE: would you leave your car unlocked in a public parking lot?  Would you leave your house's front door open and unlocked?  Grant it 20 years ago for the doors to be open and unlocked was not uncommon, and car doors 25-30 years ago was not uncommon, but today's day and age, we should be responsible and know better.  I know that it is not necessarily the askers fault or whoever leaves data lying about or car doors unlocked etc, and your car gets stolen or cleaned out and same for the house.  But you are also asking for trouble when you leave an expensive laptop sitting on the front seat....it's called temptation.  Just like holding a beer up in front of an alcoholic...grant it it's his choice to take the beer from you, but it was your doing my dangling it in front of him.

Anyway really just depends on what the asker wants.  Also drive space.  If the asker has it full of data from web design and client web data and such, then that is another good reason to clean it up.
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Fred MarshallPrincipalCommented:
The objectives weren't clear - so I offered an alternative.
The point about privacy, etc. had already been made.
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katiewebster7Author Commented:
Dear Wakeup,

Excellent point. For example why do I have my full name still as my member id. Now there's a "wakeup call".

The point is that I am handing over my laptop to my mother (whom I trust explicitly) - the goal was to have the laptop as simplified as possible as she  has never even looked at a pc. In addition, I have totally maxed out both drives with only 1 gb unused.

I bought a sizeable external hard drive for the transfer. I'll just remove as many programs as I can and go from there. Is Outlook the best email program out there for the novice of all novices?
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97WideGlideCommented:
Gosh, I don't get this discussion.  What's the resistance to just reinstalling XP ?  That is clearly the way to go for many reasons.  Just do it.  

Boot, click, click, give your mom the computer, and you're done.

Add/Remove  programs ??? Please ...

Hide all the garbage that's been put on the system by cleaning up the desktop ?  Come on ...

Personally, I'd put Ubuntu on there, but that's a whole nother discussion...
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katiewebster7Author Commented:
the point -97wideglide is that the operating system came on the system only (no discs).

Hiding garbage is not the answer to anything. it still smells.
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nobusCommented:
hey katie, i think i have a good solution for you :  http://www.jetico.com/
use BCWipe to clear and wipe any folders, files or free space of your disk, so it can't be recovered
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WakeupCommented:
I agree with 97 that reinstalling OS...and I am sure Katie agree's too.  Unfortunately w/out the restore disks or recovery disks, it would be hard to do.

So as I said earlier as well the hiding of data is just not smart.  Even if you trust your mom, you might have issues of the laptop falling into the wrong hands....stolen....if the data is there...It's there.  And as Katie's stated there's not much room on the drive anymore.  
Again programs will be hard to retrieve.  Data however should be fairly easy.  
Before you give your laptop to your mom and remove the DATA (anyway), make sure you are HAPPY with your backups and that you have access to everything you need.  Once you remove the data and programs, obviously it makes it hard if you forgot something.  So be careful!  Good luck!
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97WideGlideCommented:
What's the OS ?  I've probably got a dozen or so disks lying around with your OS or another on it or its easy to legally download them.  If you're not on dialup it shouldn't take too long.   Use the key that is on the POL/COA on your case and you're good to go.

Also, I made the first suggestion on this thread to just reinstall.  That's what you should do and not waste time trying to manually clean up the hard drive and registry or worse yet hide stuff.  

And, I'll repeat, load Ubuntu on there and your mom will love it.
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WakeupCommented:
I agree that Ubuntu may be a nice option however this is a Tablet PC.  
There may not be drivers available.  So 97, katie would need the Tablet PC version.  
I actually own a copy of it myself.
W/out it, you have NO tablet features.
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Fred MarshallPrincipalCommented:
Use Windows because plenty of people can help her.

Use Outlook Express because it's simpler than Outlook for just email and it's quite good at doing that.
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nobusCommented:
>>    however this is a Tablet PC.    <<   you're wrrong here wakeup, it  is a laptop (posted as TABLE PC
   
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WakeupCommented:
I am?  here's a link to the cx2618 model.  I used to work on this model at work....
http://support.gateway.com/s/Mobile/Q106/Viper/5945mv.shtml
Which is basically from the SAME Link YOU Provide.  The description says convertible laptop.  Butttttt the Laptop works and functions like a TABLET PC.  has a 14.
It has a stylus and digitized screen for tablet features (So you can write on top of the screen)...the screen swivels JUST LIKE  A Tablet....Comes with a Pen, and has Tablet Control (http://support.gateway.com/s/Mobile/Gateway/M280/1008547ivr61.shtml)  Buttons Sooo....are you SURE I am wrong?  also this COMES WITH WINDOWS TABLET EDITION 2005 Version....sooooo...verify for yourself...unless the model number posted is incorrect too...and I didn't see a posting that says otherwise?  The only thing is Gateway calls it CONVERTIBLE rather than TABLET....
Also everywhere on the net reviewers and the like review it as a TABLET PC.
http://www.tabletpcreview.com/price/default.asp?productID=17531&display=opinionDetail

Anyway Nobus you are usually on the ball....what happened?! hehe
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WakeupCommented:
oopps the has a 14.  Should say 14" digitizer screen.  
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WakeupCommented:
gahh it's late...been up early...I can't think staight...14" TFT screen.  gahh...
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nobusCommented:
no problem; just trying to help, and clear things up a bit; i can be wrong too (best wait for Katie's confirm..)
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WakeupCommented:
No prob...question is closed anyway...so not a huge deal hehe...
But ya I've worked on a few of these Gateway models....the one above, and a 2310 or something like that...Gateway does not have "Tablet" in the title, however to use the tablet portion you need to have Win XP Tablet, and of course comes with the pen and has the controls on the screen for when you flip it like a tablet to write on it etc.
So....is it a Tablet?  In all practicality and make and design, I say yes....in title?  gateway calls it Convertible.  So whats a convertible?  a car!? hehe.
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