Any Recovery Process starts with the computer in a Powered Off State. In case of desktops that means the tower.
If you still have a functional hard-drive then you can use the recovery partition (If available). This one can be accessed by pressing the function key F11 or F10, these are common on HPs, Lenovos and Sonys. For other computer brands search the internet.
Begin by pressing one of the keys mentioned above while the computer is starting (the first few seconds) you should be presented with a similar screen like the image below.
If you don’t see the recovery screen, then you need to keep trying because you have to press the designated (F10, F11) key while the computer is starting. It is only a small window of time where that feature is active, after that you missed it and you have to restart the computer to try again. Usually if the computer starts beeping continuously, it means that you’ve held the key pressed for too long, so release the key.
*After being presented with the recovery menu
Usually there are multiple options but the best one is the Default factory recovery. This usually recovers the computer to initial state as when you purchased it. So make sure you have all your data backed up. Because you are going to lose anything that is not backed up on an external hard drive, DVDs or something similar.
Perhaps it will ask you if you want to save your data on a USB drive or other repository format of some kind. If you never did it, this is the last chance you have of saving your data. There are a few important folders in Windows® Operating System that you should know about for backing them up.
These are the addresses of those two locations.
In Windows® XP: -> C\documents and settings\yourUserName. If you’re unsure what your user name is, sometimes it could be “owner” that comes with preinstalled computers. But in general if you have any doubts on which is it, save them all.
In Windows® Vista and 7: -> C:\users\yourUserName. Here too, if in doubt about your username save the entire folder. And you should have all your music, pictures, and all documents you use. If all your data is saved already, just continue through the wizard and read attentively to make the right choices. But remember that once you recovered the system the information you had previously gets erased.
So pay attention to what you’re doing. The arrow below points to the recovery partition on the same physical hard drive. So if the Hard- Drive fails, the only way to recover your computer is to buy a new one install it and then use the recovery CDs /DVDs.
Continuing with recovery after backup
You should select the factory default, or custom recovery. I recommend factory default, and just let it format the hard drive and reinstall everything from scratch. You will find an illustrated example recovery for Lenovo.
If for any reason you could not start the recovery process from the recovery partition move on to the next lesson to use the recovery DVDs.