Formatting a computer is a simple process which can be taken regularly to ensure a “healthy” computer. A “healthy” computer is a machine that is free of viruses, malware, and any other unwanted programs. Once a hard drive has been erased, it is impossible to retrieve any of the information that was present on it, so it is very important to try all other possibilities and to try to save as much of your data as possible.
First of all, you need to analyse the state that your computer is in. Many different types of malware can cause different functional problems, or your computer may be in a regular operating condition. If you computer shows signs of viruses or programs that cannot be removed, a few steps can be taken before the inevitable happens.
Step one involves a simple tool that comes with any of windows operating systems: system restore. Its function is to restore your computer to automatically saved checkpoints before any change happens to the system. Different versions of windows contain it in different locations, but since this article focuses on XP, the directions will always use its format. Anyhow- start menu- all programs-accessories-system tools-system restore.
Follow the simple instructions on the wizard to select a date to restore to. The description of what happened on that date will be given. Note- early checkpoints are periodically erased and are replaced by newer ones. It is important to keep track of your checkpoints.
Once you have selected the date, your machine will perform the restore and restart. If the problem continues, try restoring to an earlier date. If the problem still continues after performing multiple restores, follow the instructions on the next article- How to format a computer (Windows XP)-First steps-safe mode