Noah asked in Computers & InternetSoftware · 7 months ago

Need some help changing my OS. Any advice?

Hello, I recently acquired an HP model Windows 7 tower computer, but before I had started using it, the previous owner installed Linux Mint 18.3, this is not really the operating system I wanted to be using. So if anyone knows how I can restore it to Windows 7, or at least XP or Vista, I'd love to know.

7 Answers

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  • John
    Lv 4
    7 months ago

    You'll need the HP software disks that come with the computer if you want to reinstall Windows you get those from hp if you don't have them. But you shouldn't need to do that.

    Unless windows was uninstalled prior to installing mint mint will have installed a dual boot system which allows you to pick which operating system to boot.

    If your not seeing that most likely the interface was disabled somehow either manually or by setting the timer too short.

    You want to go to /etc and look for the boot system to find which is being used then look up instructions for it on that boot systems site.

    Basically it's relitively simple you set up windows as the default to boot then set your timer to ten seconds or less but greater than three seconds.

    Then the system will boot windows automatically.

  • 7 months ago

    You can google how to restore an HP computer back to factory. Usually during boot up there are messages, such as press "delete" to enter setup/bios or press some "F" key to enter restore mode. If you don't see a message like that, sometime you can google what key to press during bootup to enter the restore partition. If all else fails, you could simply find a Windows 7 OEM to download and install where the key may be stored in the bios to reactivate.

  • 7 months ago

    Since Linux Mint is already installed....you should give it an honest attempt to learn it a little. I assure you its much easier to use than win. But in the end if you just want windows....then what Discrete and Anom said is best bet.

  • 7 months ago

    The post/advice from the Anonymous user is the best. The machine may very well be configured to dual boot. Before attempting to go through hassle of acquiring media and redeploying OS make sure it is not already there.

    If you are not familiar with Linux or any command line system administration, it may be easier and less frustrating for you to simply press F11 or F12 or F2 or F10 or DEL or whatever function key combination lets you get into the BIOS/UEFI during POST. Right when you turn on machine there will likely be an HP logo flash and possibly some text that says something like "Press F2 to enter Setup". Quickly press the key indicated. If it says nothing just mash em all till the machine boots differently (if it gets into linux then you need to reboot and mash again). Once inside setup your options will be fairly limited since OEM's like HP rip out all the options to cut down on support calls. There should be something along the line of "Boot Order" or "Boot Partition". If both OSs are still installed it may just be configured to use the Linux Partition as default, if so you can just make the windows partition higher priority by putting it above linux in the list.

    hope that helps.

    might not. I'm speculating now because it is late and memory is fuzzy; but if is an MBR drive both partitions would be seen during post as bootable since it would need to be in boot record. I kind of recall typically seeing dual boot machines give me the option of which partition to choose as it completed POST. That was years ago though. It is likely a GPT disk and using UEFI which I know far less about.

    Good luck

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  • keerok
    Lv 7
    7 months ago

    Get a Windows installer and start from scratch. AFAIK, Win7 computers have no Reset utility.

  • Anonymous
    7 months ago

    Well, this is a many part question. And I really don't feel like going into details. Get into the terminal and type lsblk (look the command up if you like)... if you have more than one partition you might have windows 7 or the recovery drive still availiable.

    Try downloading the ISO from microsoft, burn and such... your activation license is stored in the bios so even though the software is gone it should still be activated.

    You can also try seeing if you can find the OS Recovery Image off of HP's webpage.

    Honestly, you might just be better paying someone else to do it; I wouldn't recommend these type things for people who don't know what they're doing or how to recover from an issue they made.

  • Adrian
    Lv 7
    7 months ago

    You would have to obtain a license for the OS you want (or use an existing license you have), get the media for it, and install a fresh copy of it. There is no other way to "restore" to any Windows versions

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