Clean Install XP
For Home Computer Users

Clean Install XP is the 4th and final part of the Windows XP Home Edition installation tutorial series.

Windows XP continues to be popular with home computer users who have not yet moved to Microsoft Windows 7 or later.

This part of the tutorial looks at the finishing steps of the installation process and some recommended post-installation steps before application install.

IMPORTANT NOTICE

Windows XP has gone End of Life (EOL) on April 8th 2014. This means no further security patches or Service Packs for this Operating System!

Microsoft recently announced the continuation of advisories for newly discovered vulnerabilities, and the continuation of updates for things like Windows Defender only.

My advice is to move to Windows 7 (assuming you wish to stay on a Windows platform) as soon as possible.

I also advise not moving to Windows 8 or Windows 8.1. At the time of writing it appears this Operating System is experiencing numerous issues.

Windows 10 is to be released on the 29th July 2015. After moving to Windows 7 it is worth waiting to see what Windows 10 brings before deciding to move to this latest version.



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Part 1 looks at the initial pre-requisite steps of the installation process.

Part 2 walks you through the next batch of choices required during the installation process.

Part 3 walks you through further choices to be made during the installation process, such as selecting your region and input languages.

This tutorial gives you the opportunity to share your views on all things Windows XP related.

Write your own personal web page by completing the Tools And Utilities Form at the bottom of this page.

Do you use any tools or utilities to help keep your Windows XP Computer running smoothly? What do these tools do and in what circumstances did you last use it?

You can also read What Other Visitors Have Said about the tools and utilities they use.

The Table of Contents enables you to go to the part of the process that you are interested in.


Table of Contents

  1. Setting Up Your Computer
  2. Post Implementation Tasks
  3. Clean Install XP Final Thoughts


Setting Up Your Computer

Quick Recap: Part 3 discusses the final installation steps such as whether to connect your home PC to a workgroup or a domain, and the auto-tuning of your monitor settings.


Clean Install XP
Workgroup Or Domain

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Workgroup Or Domain


Clean Install XP
Monitor Settings

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Monitor Settings


After you accept (or reject) the monitor settings, your new operating system applies those settings, then takes you through the following setup process.

  • At the Welcome To Microsoft Windows screen, click the green Next arrow to continue.

Welcome To Microsoft Windows
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Welcome To Microsoft Windows

  • At the How will this computer connect to the Internet prompt, select the Digital Subscriber line (DSL) or Cable Modem option, or click the green Skip button to go onto the next question. 

    If you decide to connect your computer to the Internet at this time, you are asked another question with regards to how your computer is to connect online. 

    Yes is the standard default answer. 

Remember Do not connect to the Internet until you have at least Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP3 installed (SP3 applies to all Editions of XP)


  • Connecting to the Internet without XP SP3 installed subjects your machine to lots of Malware attacks

Internet Connection
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Internet Connection

  • Ready To activate Windows? You receive this screen when you configure your Internet connection. However, select the No, remind me every few days option. 

    Select the No option especially if you do not have a Windows XP install CD without Service Pack 3 incorporated. You can activate later as Microsoft gives you 30 days to do this.

Ready to Activate Windows
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Ready to Activate Windows XP

  • Who Will Use This Computer? This is where you can setup multiple accounts for each family member. Here they can set their own operating system customisations, such as how information is displayed. 

    You can create up to 5 users accounts. When you boot up your computer you are prompted to select your user account, and to enter your password if one is setup. 

    You can always change these setting and add or remove user accounts from the Control Panel.

Who Will Use This Computer?
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Who Will Use This Computer?

  • Click Next then Finish. You are prompted to log in to one of the accounts you have setup. If you create no accounts you log in automatically as local administrator. 

    This is not advised as lots of Microsoft Vulnerabilities are exploited by local administrator rights.

Windows XP Login Screen
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Windows XP Login Screen

Return to the Table of Contents



Post Implementation Tasks

This section of the tutorial touches on some of the things you should consider doing before starting to install your main applications.

  • Take The XP Tour if you feel the need to, otherwise Left Click the balloon in the System Tray and click Cancel button.

Windows XP Tour
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Windows XP Tour

Windows XP Tour Options
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  • Review your Device Manager and install the latest version of the device drivers you downloaded. See Part 1 for a reminder. 

    Double check your devices (Printers, Scanners, CD/DVD drive, etc.) are working properly before continuing.

  • Install Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP3 (Also for Home Edition) if your install CD included an earlier Service Pack. This vastly improves the security of your PC

  • Install your Anti-Virus program. Update the pattern file to protect against the latest viruses when you go online (provide quick protection).

  • Connect to the Internet and Activate Windows XP. This should now be possible due to the valid Windows XP Activation Code you entered earlier in the installation process.

Windows XP Activation
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  • Ensure Microsoft Windows XP Updates (Automatic Updates) is setup so your computer downloads and installs any additional patches released by Microsoft since the release of Service Pack 3. 

    This takes some time as SP3 was released in June 2008! That's around 6 years worth of additional updates to apply!

  • Consider using the Windows Classic theme with no wallpaper. Clunky XP Themes and large sized wallpapers all take up computing resource, impacting your computers performance. 

    A minimalist approach here pays dividends in the long run! Take a look at the Speed Up My PC page for lots of ways to improve your computers performance.

  • Open Windows ExplorerRight Click your C:\ Drive, select Properties, then the Tools tab, and select:

    The Check Now... Button under the Error-Checking heading (Scan Disk) 

    The Defragment Now... Button under the Defragmentation heading

Clean Install XP
Local Disk Properties

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Local Disk Properties

  • Finally, start installing your applications!

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Clean Install XP
Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial series, and more importantly, it enabled you to take the brave step and install an Operating System yourself.

eHow (Opens New Window) provides a good overview of the XP Home Edition installation process.

PC Windows Tips (Opens New Window) present an excellently detailed installation process.




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