In some cases, the installation of a program or driver in Windows can cause certain failures in the computer. Normally, to solve the problem, it is enough to uninstall the software that is causing the problem. However, on many occasions the error persists.
Problems can arise from updates that are not compatible with the Windows operating system, because the drivers do not work properly, or because of the presence of computer malware that corrupts important files on computers.
To avoid headaches, and a malfunction of Windows, it is necessary to perform a system restore . However, if the situation is very serious, and the computer is slow, a total format is best . Here’s how to do it in Windows 7 .
What are the main differences of doing system restore and formatting it?
Users often confuse restoring with formatting, and come to believe that it is the same thing. However, in the computer world both terms refer to totally different functions. In layman’s terms, restore is a reboot, while formatting is a total cleanup . Although, to understand their differences, you have to define the functionality of each one.
The restoration of the system will allow you to return to an earlier time to restore the proper functioning of the files that have the fault. It is used to get rid of changes made on your computer, without affecting your personal files such as documents, photos and emails.
Likewise, it is possible to create restore points, which serve the function of storing the information of the registry settings and other data necessary for Windows. This returns the system to a state before the problem.
On the other hand, formatting refers to the total cleaning of the hard drive . In other words, it consists of the elimination of the files and programs contained in the storage unit. The goal of formatting is to return the computer to its factory state.
On certain occasions, based on the user’s requirements, it is necessary to create a backup of the information to avoid its loss. The process may take some time, and it is recommended that it be carried out by a computer professional. Although the work is very simple, if you have the necessary knowledge.
When is restoration convenient?
Restoring is convenient for troubleshooting operation, performance, and compatibility issues. Periodically and automatically, Windows takes care of creating restore points, which is why it stores important information about the system.
For that reason, when a problem occurs when installing a hardware driver, or after installing a program that causes crashes, it is necessary to restore the operating system to a previous version.
When is formatting convenient?
Formatting, on the other hand, is only recommended when the system takes a long time to run, due to the massive presence of temporary files, residual files and installed programs, which generates slowness and a saturation of the RAM memory .
In the same way, it is necessary to format the computer when there is little space available on the hard disk, or to eliminate the presence of viruses ( Trojans ) that have infected the system files, and that the antivirus cannot eliminate easily, since it could impair operation.
Steps to restore Windows 7 so you don’t lose important files and programs
Before restoring the Windows 7 operating system, it is necessary to save the open files and close the programs that are running, since the restoration will restart the computer.
Although the restoration does not affect personal files such as multimedia content and other documents, it does affect the configuration of system files, Windows registries, scripts and installed programs. For added security, make a critical software backup.
To restore to a previous version of Windows 7, there are two ways to do it:
- First, click on the start button (Windows Logo).
- Go to “All programs” .
- Select “Accessories . “
- Click on “System Tools . “
- Click on “System Restore . ” It will likely require a confirmation or password from the administrator in order to perform the restore.
Another route available to access this function is the following:
- Press the start button .
- Select “Control Panel . “
- Click on “System and Security . ” Then select “System” .
- In the menu on the left, click on “System Protection . ” It may require administrator permissions to continue.
- Press the “System Restore” button . By default, it is set to “Recommended Restore” . It means that it will take the last created restore point as the starting point.
- Click “Next” and then “Finish . ” The system will throw a notification. To start with the restoration, press “Yes” . When the process is complete, the computer will restart.
In case you want to return to the factory version on your computer, you need to follow the following steps:
- Access “Control Panel” and select “System and Security . ” Then click on “Backup and Restore” .
- Make sure backups are configured on your computer. Press “Recover system or computer configuration” . Then press “Advanced recovery methods” .
- Click “Reinstall Windows . ” It is necessary to have the installation disc to carry out the task. The system will give you the option to make a backup of your important files. In the case that you already did, press “skip” and then “restart” .
- After the restart, the system recovery options will appear on the screen. In the list of recovery tools, you must select “Restory management” .
- Finally, click on “Restore the operating system to factory defaults . ” Follow the steps indicated to complete the installation of Windows 7.
From a restore point
Restore points are created automatically by the system, just before the installation of a driver or program . These are responsible for gathering information prior to that moment.
They are stored in a hard disk space and as new ones are created, old restore points are deleted . These can be created manually. To do this, go to the search bar on the start button.
Then follow the steps below:
- Enter the term “Create” in the program and file browser.
- In the list, select the option to “Create a restore point . ” A “System Protection” window will open .
- At the bottom, click “Create . “
- After creating the new restore point, click “OK” and then close the window.
- To restore a version other than the one recommended by the system, you must manually select the restore point. To do this, go back to the “System Protection” window .
- Click on “System Restore . ” In the new window, click “next” . Select the restore point you want to return to.
- If none appear, check the “Show more restore points” box . Make your selection and press “Next” .
- Finally, click on “Finish” so that the computer will restart.
Windows 7 is no longer supported by Microsoft. What am I risking if I keep using it?
On January 14, 2020, Microsoft stopped supporting Windows 7 . This brings a series of implications that could affect the performance of your computer. Although the operating system will continue to work, Microsoft will not be able to offer you:
- Technical support to solve problems, failures or system errors .
- Regular software updates .
- Security updates .
Therefore, by not receiving free software and security updates, your computer will be left unprotected, increasing its vulnerability against malware and viruses .
Also, by not having protection, Windows 7 will be more prone to cyber attackers. In addition, the operating system will progressively lose more functions and applications. Thus, it is necessary that you take the following precautions:
- Make a backup of all your files . In this way, in the event of a technical problem or failure caused by a virus, you will not lose your important information.
- You can also create a share in the cloud. Be it Google Drive , OneDrive , Dropbox , or any other tool, to protect your photos and other multimedia content.
- Some older computers are compatible with versions of Windows 10. In the case of an older model, you can try to install the latest operating system . On the other hand, you can choose to use Linux.
- A new computer may need to be purchased . Take some time to review the many modern computer options that are available on the market. These come with the latest version of Windows 10. The operating system takes care of providing you with free software and security updates.
- Keep your antivirus activated and perform frequent checks to detect possible threats that could compromise the security of the computer. Similarly, avoid using the Internet Explorer browser, since its performance will be considerably lower.
- As a last piece of information, make sure you have your network devices updated to continue working on your computer.