How do we restore a laptop with no restore disc?
November 9, 2009 8:36 AM   Subscribe

My son who is away at college in his freshman year suffered a hard drive crash on a 6 month old Sony Vaio laptop. He has returned it to Best Buy under the service contract and they are replacing the hard drive, but... he never created a system restore disc. What next?

Luckily he has his data backed up, but Best Buy have told him he will have to reinstall everything from the restore disc which of course he doesn't have. He can buy a copy of Windows 7 from the school bookstore at the student price and says he will just load it up with Windows 7, but my concern is with the drivers for the DVD drive, Wi-fi, etc. Would Sony supply us with a basic restore disc if we give them the laptop serial number or is there a better way to get it back to its out-of-the-box configuration?
posted by 543DoublePlay to Computers & Internet (3 answers total)
Best answer: He can find all the drivers he needs on Sony's website.

Hopefully he can call Sony and explain that he doesn't have a restore disk, and they'll mail him a copy of what he needs. I don't think they'll force him to purchase a copy of Windows since he's already purchased a valid license when he bought the computer. He just needs a copy of the media, which an understanding customer service rep should send out right away.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 8:45 AM on November 9, 2009

Best answer: Sony sells recovery CD's here.
posted by rsclark at 9:11 AM on November 9, 2009

I wouldn't sweat the recovery disk too much. Most of the time, they are made at the time the laptop is designed and so the drivers, OS, apps and whatnot will be very out of date even a few months after purchase.

By and large, windows 7 should have the drivers he needs - I've been impressed with 7's ability to locate drivers for funky hardware. That said, he'll be able to get the rest from sony's website - although, truth told, it can be tricky. But it is totally doable.

Personally, whenever I buy a new machine I throw out the recovery disk and format the drive and install the OS, drivers, and apps myself. It's the best way to avoid the crapware that gets included in the default install, and the drivers are guaranteed to be the latest and greatest.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 9:20 AM on November 9, 2009

« Older Help a smart but inexperienced young man manage my...   |   I've narrowed it down to fancier than jeans less... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.