How To Format & Reinstall Windows ME:
Note: The instructions below are for users who have a Microsoft Windows ME installation disk. If you don't have a real Windows CD but some sort of recovery disk set instead you should contact your PC makers web site or technical support phone line for correct reinstallation instructions. Instructions for reinstallation vary depending on make and model so its important you locate make-model specific instructions.
Note: For all other operating systems check this out :
CyberWalkers Reformat and Reinstall FAQ
1. First thing to do is Check out this Microsoft Knowledge Base Article (MSKB). It explains how to use the format and FDISK tool. http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;q255867
2. Next step is to locate and read this file on your Windows ME PC. It will explain how to install windows on a clean HD. c:/windows/options/install/cleanhd.txt
3. Finally you should check out http://www.windowsreinstall.com This site has step-by-step screen shots for reinstalling various Windows operating systems. I suggest printing out the pages so you can refer to them during install.
1. Your Windows ME installation CD. You will need a full version copy of Windows ME or an upgrade version of Windows ME + a previous version of windows 9X for use as qualifying software.
2. A Windows ME start up disk (also known as boot disk). If you don't have one create one with the instructions below or download one from w0rm @ http://dos.li5.org/.
Creating A Windows ME Startup Disk:
1. Insert a blank 3.5 disk into your floppy drive.
2. Open Add/Remove Programs properties in Control Panel.
3. Click the Startup Disk tab, and then click Create Disk.
4. Follow the instructions on the screen.
Downloading A Boot Disk:
1. Browse to http://dos.li5.org/.
2. Look under the "BootDisks" Header and click the WINME.EXE - Bootdisk for Windows Millenium link. Download it to your desktop.
3. Insert a formatted 3.5 floppy and double click the WINME.EXE file you just downloaded. This executable file will write the disk and create a windows me boot disk for you.
Special thanks to BootDisk.Com for making me aware of w0rm and his excellent boot disks.
3. Valid Windows ME product key. This can be found on back of the plastic case your windows CD came in. If you cant locate the case or key you can find it in the registry, be sure to Write it down after you locate it.
Locate windows product key in the registry:
1. Click start/run/type in regedit and click OK.
2. Select edit then find from the menu.
3. Type in Product Key. Once the search stops you should see it on the right.
Note : If your not comfortable with browsing the registry you can download this program to your desktop and double click it. Your product key will be displayed automatically.
Note: Be sure to backup all data to removable disk (zip,cd-r,floppy etc.) before format. Files, setup.exe's for software, favorites folder, E-mail & address books, drivers for hardware and anything else you have added and wish to save since purchasing your PC. All of these files will be deleted from the HD (lost) during format. Once windows is reinstalled you can restore the data from your backups.
1. Insert your startup floppy & your Windows ME CD, Restart the computer.
2. Choose option 2 "start windows with CD-ROM support" when prompted.
3. Take note of your CD-ROM's drive letter. It will be displayed in the text on the screen. "Your CD-ROM driver letter is _"
4. At the A:\prompt type in format C: and press enter.
5. Choose YES when asked to proceed with format by pressing the letter Y and then pressing enter. Format will run.
6. After format is complete Enter a volume label then press enter or just press enter for none.An A:\ prompt will appear.
Note: Your not required to enter a volume label, you may leave this empty and simply press enter to continue.
7. At the A:\prompt type in E:\setup and press enter. Change the letter E in my example to your CD-ROM's drive letter.
8. Press enter to continue so windows can run some tests. A blue screen should appear. Press the letter X to exit and begin installation.
Note: After pressing X Windows install GUI will begin. At this point you should be able to finish the install via point and click. Follow on screen instructions to install Windows ME. If your having trouble understanding something you can refer to the screen shots you printed out at http://www.windowsreinstall.com. After installation restore you data from the backups you made and reinstall your software and drivers. Check out this link for information about installing and trouble shooting hardware drivers. http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;q296060