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Possible Duplicate:
Reinstalling Windows XP - Reinstall Everything?

I am experiencing frequent freezes in XP on a machine where the only solution is to do a manual hard power off and on.

I have run hardward diagnostic tests and all pass so I believe it is a software problem.

I would not like to have to format the hard-drive.

Can I just delete the WINDOWS folder and then boot from the XP installation disk and then install XP from there?

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marked as duplicate by Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007, Nifle, random Jun 8 '12 at 2:02

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

Yes. You can.

BACKUP & Delete programs files, windows and documents and settings folders somehow(may be through linux live CD). Boot from Windows XP installation disc. After you select the drive, select "Leave the partition unchanged" or something similar. Install XP and then edit boot.ini to remove the entry for older installation

I have previously told you to back up those 3 folders because, XP setup might tell you that windows is already installed on that partition.

The safer option is to boot from XP CD and install it on other partition. That way, you will have 2 running installations of Windows XP. Then delete older XP's folders and delete the boot entry from boot.ini.

In either case, you will have to reinstall your drivers/programs. Be ready for that.

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Install XP on the current installation. If you have any software problem it will be fixed and everything including your installed software and user accounts remains intact. Essentially it's a repair when you do this. From the CD run the installation file and follow the wizard. During the installation you have the option to back up the old XP in case something goes wrong. Generally, this is the quickest and safest way to repair XP as far as I know.

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