My computers software is completely beyond repair! How do I reformat and reinstall Windows?

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Included in the original package you were sent from Dell there should be a white, cardboard cd-sleeve with 5 CDs in it. These CDs will restore your computer to exactly the state it was in when it was first shipped. You can also have the HelpDesk restore your laptop for you, but it will have to be left at the HelpDesk in Mark Hopkins for at least a few hours.

To get started:

  • Save anything you want to keep to a CD, USB Pen Drive, etc... All of your data will be erased if you do not.
  • Locate the CD-Rom package and insert the first disc in your computer's CD-Rom drive.
  • Shut-off your computer
  • Turn on your computer.
  • Once you see the Dell logo appear on the screen, press F12 to open the boot menu.
  • You should now have the option to select different boot devices. If not, shut the computer off and repeat the last step until the boot menu appears. If Windows begins to load, you can still power off the computer. After all, you will be erasing the drive.
  • Once you have the boot menu, you should select "CD/DVD/CD-RW" and hit enter.
  • Once the computer has booted, you should be prompted to run the "CFI System Restore".
  • Press "M" at the first screen.
  • From the "Recovery Menu" make sure "Restore The System" is highlighted and press your "Enter" key.
  • You will be asked to confirm your selection. NOTE: This is the last point at which you will still be able to recover your files. If you are not sure whether or you have everything you need. STOP!
  • If you are sure that you want to continue, press the "R" key.
  • This process takes about an hour. During the restore process you will be asked to insert each of the five discs in sequence. When prompted, remove the current CD and replace it with the subsequent one. Once the disc is in the drive, press the "Enter" key to continue.
  • After the last disc has completed, you will be able to shut off your computer and boot directly into Windows.