After a good solid week of headaches related to Win 7, system restore, and corrupted USB port drivers, after completing a repair install yesterday all seems to be back to normal.

This morning when I turned on the machine I found four restore points – the test one I made late last night and three others that were created during the repair install. So… it seems like the problems are gone… Fingers still crossed, but for now, okay.

My Windows 7 saga may be coming to a close.

During last night’s tech support call with Microsoft, I was instructed to do a repair install, an in-place upgrade of Windows 7 using the Win7 DVD. I didn’t even know I could do this.

I tried this four times. The first two times, it got halfway through (that’s about an hour) and never rebooted as it was supposed to. I rebooted it manually; that did not work and it took a while to get back into Win7.

The third time, I thought to turn off the firewall because it was giving me permissions messages when the install started. The tech support person neglected to mention this to me). This time, when it got to the point where it was hanging, it actually did reboot – but not all the way. It took me into the boot menu among other places and again failed to restart where it left off.

Then I found this excellent Windows 7 repair install tutorial on the Windows 7 forums.  I tried it the process once more with both the firewall and antivirus turned off. Same thing – it rebooted, but not all the way.  Frustrated (to say the least) I gave up and turned off the machine.

So this morning, when I turned it on, right after the ‘Starting Windows’ screen I see an ‘Upgrading Windows’ screen. 10 seconds later I’m back where it left off last night. I have no idea why it worked, but I’m certainly not complaining.

Once it finished up, I went back to the tutorial and followed the steps listed. Everything appeared to be fine, I just had to redo my settings for monitors, type, etc., nothing major.

And then the first big test – did the external hard drive, which Win7 has failed to recognize since last Sunday, actually work?

It DID! So something good is definitely happening.

I’m imaging the main internal drive right now before I do step 18 in the tutorial – disk cleanup. Hopefully that will go fine, and then perhaps I will peek at System Restore (the cause of all this trouble) to see if it’s working. I’m not quite mentally ready to do that yet, and I have a lot of work to do this weekend after missing a few days due to the Windows issues. But I’m cautiously optimistic about the prospect.