Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Windows 8.1 recovery image

File corruption is something that happens to all systems. With a lot of operating systems, the only course of action is a re-install. With windows 8, Microsoft introduced a method to "refresh" your install. The problem is, that you need something to refresh from. If you purchased a PC installed with Windows 8, or purchased a Windows 8 upgrade when Microsoft was practically giving them away then you may have a slight problem. If your media is Windows 8.1 you're fine, and can just use that, but it's still not ideal. If you're most likely running Windows 8.1, and your installation media is Windows 8. You won't be able to do a refresh at all as the media doesn't match. There is a great right up on how to create a "recovery partition" and a USB recovery drive from your current install.

However, that is still not enough. Once you have created your recovery image, find it, rename it to INSTALL.WIM and then the following:

reagentc /SetOSImage /Path "D:\refreshimage\INSTALL.WIM" /Index 1

Change your path to wherever you created your recovery image from the linked post. Then use your recovery partition checkbox in the create recovery dialog should be available.

The advantage of doing a refresh image, is that it will include all the drivers and settings and core software installs for you. For your actual files either use file history or skydrive backups.

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