Restore programs, settings and data
Once Windows is reinstalled, open Windows Update to bring Windows fully up to date – don’t be surprised if there are hundreds of updates still to apply in the case of Windows 7 and 8.1. Once it’s fully up to date, consider reinstalling Macrium Reflect Free (www. macrium.com/reflectfree) and taking your first drive image – a vanilla backup you can restore in future instead of reinstalling Windows itself.
If you followed the advice in our ‘Reinstall Windows’ feature from issue 139, you should now be able to reinstall your core apps using CloneApp (www. mirinsoft.com) from your data drive. If you click the Restore button, every single program setting you backed up will be restored – if there are any backup settings you don’t want to restore, select Options to locate the backup folder, then open it and move any program folders you want to ignore out of the folder temporarily before clicking the Restore button. Now take your second Macrium Reflect Free backup.
Finally, open File History or the Windows Backup and Restore tool and take steps to restore any data you backed up, then make sure the tool is configured to carry on backing up going forward.