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SecretGardener
1 Copper

Dell Inspiron 531

I am looking to do a factory reset on my Inspiron before it gets sold. All my google searches suggest I hit F8 before the windows screen loads up. I have done this repeatedly with gentle key strokes, repeated key strokes etc etc.

 

Can anyone advise if there is an alternative way to do a factory reset?

 

Many thanks

Brian

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6 Replies
8 Platinum

RE: Dell Inspiron 531

I am looking to do a factory reset on my Inspiron before it gets sold. All my google searches suggest I hit F8 before the windows screen loads up. I have done this repeatedly with gentle key strokes, repeated key strokes etc etc.

 

Can anyone advise if there is an alternative way to do a factory reset?

 

Many thanks

Brian

It's always handy to include the version of windows that is installed in a post.

Best to wipe the hard drive clean using an eraser utility.

 I've found DBAN, very effective for erasing all the data from a hard drive. Go HERE for more information.

Bev.

 


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Mary G
6 Indium

RE: Dell Inspiron 531

What operating system? The Dell manual that you can read at Dell Support is a better source for info, but factory resets cannot be performed if the recovery partition is damaged or missing or if windows has been updated to a diff operating system. Factory reset is not usually available on older computers because of one those reasons. You can boot to your reinstall disk to do a custom install, delete the windows partition and reinstall windows.

SecretGardener
1 Copper

RE: Dell Inspiron 531

Thanks for your reply Bev. New to the forum so advice gladly accepted. I had found DBAN via a Google search recommendation so will give that ago. It is Windows Vista home premium. Have read the manual and it is saying the following Windows Vista: Dell Factory Image Restore Turn on the computer. When the Dell logo appears, press several times to access the Vista Advanced Boot Options Window. Select Repair Your Computer. The System Recovery Options window appears. Select a keyboard layout and click Next. To access the recovery options, log on as a local user. To access the command prompt, type administrator in the User name field, then click OK. Click Dell Factory Image Restore. NOTE: Depending upon your configuration, you may need to select Dell Factory Tools, then Dell Factory Image Restore. The Dell Factory Image Restore welcome screen appears. Click Next. The Confirm Data Deletion screen appears. NOTICE: If you do not want to proceed with Factory Image Restore, click Cancel. Click the checkbox to confirm that you want to continue reformatting the hard drive and restoring the system software to the factory condition, then click Next. The restore process begins and may take five or more minutes to complete. A message appears when the operating system and factory-installed applications have been restored to factory condition. Click Finish to reboot the system. Troubleshooting Tools So shall carry hitting F8, possibly with a hammer
8 Platinum

RE: Dell Inspiron 531

SecretGardener

The Dell 'Factory Image Restore' feature can become corrupted.

If your system was purchased after April 22, 2009, check out the following document.

http://www.dell.com/support/article/us/en/19/DSN_336966?c=us&s=dhs&cs=19&l=en

Bev.

 


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SecretGardener
1 Copper

RE: Dell Inspiron 531

Thanks once more Bev for the advice. The link takes me to the same suggestion of the repeated F8 pressing and this is just not happening. Have even tried an alternative keyboard. Moving onto a large mallet next for the F8 process.

Brian

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Philip_Yip
6 Indium

RE: Dell Inspiron 531

First follow the instructions here to install the latest version of Dell Backup and Recovery:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7yOz10Y8GCE&list=PL1RkaknDn7v88-b9HVWAauoWSHDQhoe4w&index=2

It may fix your recovery partition or inform you whether or not its corrupted. If it is fixed, then you can make a recovery USB and restore from it or the internal recovery partition. As your intent is to sell the system use DBAN after you have made the Recovery USB (remove the Recovery USB while using DBAN). DBAN will of course securely wipe the drive including the recovery partition. These will be remade when you install with the Recovery USB 

If Dell Backup doesn't work you will need to clean install Windows Vista. See my guide here for details which will instruct you with downloading and preparing media, updating Windows fully, driver installation in the correct order and the creation of a new recovery partition with Dell Backup and Recovery:

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/a-clean-install-of-windows/

Dr Philip Yip
Tech Enthusiast and Author of the Unofficial Dell Windows Reinstallation Guide

Windows FAQs and OEM Downloads


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