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Windows 8 To Include Built-in Reset, Refresh

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the control-z dept.

Microsoft 441

MrSeb writes "Microsoft, in its infinite wisdom, will provide push-button Reset and Refresh in Windows 8. Reset will restore a Windows 8 PC to its stock, fresh-from-the-factory state; Refresh will reinstall Windows 8, but keep your documents and installed Metro apps in tact. For the power users, Windows 8 will include a new tool called recimg.exe, which allows you to create a hard drive image that Refresh will use (you can install all of your Desktop apps, tweak all your settings, run recimg.exe... and then, when you Refresh, you'll be handed a clean, ready-to-go computer). Reset and Refresh are obviously tablety features that Windows 8 will need to compete against iOS and Android — but considering Windows' malware magnetism and the number of times I've had to schlep over to my mother's house with a Windows CD... these features should be very welcome on the desktop, too."

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Next step... (5, Funny)

Kenja (541830) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599054)

Next step is to have Windows 8.5 just auto-refresh every few months since Microsoft seems to assume you'll be doing it any how.

Re:Next step... (3, Insightful)

MogNuts (97512) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599462)

I think your problem might be a case of simple PEBKAC.

I have a Vista install since 2007 still running as fast as when I installed it, with no errors or problems. Want to know how I achieved this amazing feat?

I didn't click on "punch the monkey" ads, blindly click through installers which would install 5,000 toolbars in my web browser, click on random emails, or install software from that nice russian/nigerian person in the email.

Wow, that was so hard.

As a side note, I wonder how the companies who install pre-loaded crapware will like this. I mean, one could always reformat from the manufacturers recovery cd, but how many people did that? Here, it's so gosh darn easy, EVERY tech site will recomend it to grandma and it'll be the first thing everyone does upon arrival.

Re:Next step... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599576)

The companies that pre-load all that garbage will make sure that it all gets on the recovery image too. You'll still have to uninstall all that crap once.

Re:Next step... (3, Informative)

atlasdropperofworlds (888683) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599588)

I agree. I've been setting up Win7 systems for various people, and with the exception of just one (who had a habit of collecting applications from around the internet), all those systems are still stable and solid. Mine, in particular, hasn't been turned off, and only restarted due to some patching, and it's still stable and solid.

However, I do like the idea of a built-in reset, especially if you can use it to rid yourself of 'crapware' on a new system with minimal effort.

Re:Next step... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599666)

Same here, I had to stop posting with my account any time I praised Windows 7 though... Got modded way the fuck down to troll real fast.

Re:Next step... (5, Insightful)

rsborg (111459) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599686)

I think your problem might be a case of simple PEBKAC.

It's attitudes like yours that explain why Android and iOS are the future for many computer users. Blaming the user for an easily exploitable system will drive them fully into the arms of walled gardens and locked bootloaders. Perhaps that's where they want to be - and maybe that's good for the sanity of geeks like you and me. However, I think in the long run, defaulting users to locked systems is a bad thing for software freedom and the availability of general purpose computing devices.

Re:Next step... (5, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599586)

Next step is to have Windows 8.5 just auto-refresh every few months since Microsoft seems to assume you'll be doing it any how.

Good, because MS has been making it increasingly difficult to be able to do a reinstall even if you have a licensed copy.

Between "upgrade" disks which only work if you have a working install, and the trend to get rid of recovery disks ... it's about time Microsoft realized that the only way to maintain a system over a period of time is to rebuild the OS periodically.

Microsoft recently sued [computerworld.com] a computer reseller for piracy because they made recovery disks available to users.

In my experience, the recovery software installed by OEMs is complete shit .. the process for creating it on my wife's HP laptop failed, and then said you were only allowed to do it once, leaving us without one. So, Microsoft hopes when your system crashes you'll go buy a new copy ... but if you've already paid for a copy, you might as well pirate it.

I know the last few PCs I've bought I've insisted I receive a full boxed install media ... not the OEM, but the retail one, and I pay for it. Because if you don't have this, when your Windows system needs to be rebuilt, you're probably hosed.

The trend to not give people install media (in order to prevent piracy) has largely left people with systems they can't repair, and an incentive to pirate what they've already bought.

If a crashed/hosed computer means you lose your data and you'll have to spend as much money as a new computer costs ... something has gone seriously wrong.

Re:Next step... (3, Informative)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599716)

First thing I do when I get a new windows PC is make an image of the hard drive and put it somewhere safe. Windows 7 makes this pretty easy with the built in tools, and all you need is a recovery disk to boot into the mode to apply the update so the machine doesn't have to be bootable.

Re:Next step... (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599664)

Next step is to have Windows 8.5 just auto-refresh every few months since Microsoft seems to assume you'll be doing it any how.

Yeah, once a worm has messed it up, you pretty much have to.

Repairs to XP after a worm leaves you with a rather brain-damaged and stupid mess of a system, which keeps losing track of drivers or having two drivers (I can't find the source of the phantom one) running concurrently and interferring with each other.

May I suggest Microsoft follow in the footsteps of Apple and start planning a future departure from these stupid Windows systems and start looking at building a whole new environment on a bsd or Linux kernal? For the best, really.

Just an excuse (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599072)

It's just an excuse to trash grub ( linux) installations over and over.

Re:Just an excuse (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599140)

I have an idea. It's a little complicated, so stay with me now: if you use GRUB, don't hit the fucking button.

Re:Just an excuse (1)

jampola (1994582) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599282)

Mod up. You made me LOL!

Re:Just an excuse (0)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599340)

I know you're joking, but it's worse than that. MS has chosen to use a system of profiles that's both byzantine and difficult to work with. A button like that on Linux probably wouldn't be that big of a deal as it could just work on all the partitions except for /home.

With Windows due to incompetent architecture it's a PITA to properly separate the user profile from the install and by default it's there on the same partition with no particularly convenient way of moving it from one computer to another other than the authorized tools. Suffice it to say that the tools are imperfect and are easily corrupted.

Re:Just an excuse (1)

Pieroxy (222434) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599436)

A button like that on Linux probably wouldn't be that big of a deal as it could just work on all the partitions except for /home.

You mean to say that everything in /var is meaningless in a typical Linux install? Mysql, svn, apache, etc. All to the trash can. Yeah!

While I am all in favor of the separation of concerns and while I also agree that Linux is better than Windows in that regard, it is nowhere as clear cut as you'd like it to be.

Re:Just an excuse (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599566)

You mean to say that everything in /var is meaningless in a typical Linux install? Mysql, svn, apache, etc.

While that's true, I doubt that more than 1% of Linux desktop users run MySQL, SVN servers or web servers on their machines.

I'd be rather surprised to see a Windows server admin risk pressing the 'reset OS' button.

Re:Just an excuse (2)

erroneus (253617) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599732)

Yeah, I was going to say /var but also /etc and /usr/local and /opt...

I'm a Linux user. I'm a Linux fan. I'm a Linux supporter. I'm a Linux enthusiast. But I saw it too.

What's worse, I have seen where some apps want to install into /usr and places like that. And how does it work when you want to add and remove services and programs from your original distro?

One area or means of implementation that would make sense would be to essentially make a "live cd" of the OS layout and be done with it because that's what we're talking about. The OS can look for "updated configs" in certain places, but "if !(exist(config_file)) config_file=default_config_file" you know? Also, at boot time, "load default_configuration_database -> system_ram_disk; if (exist(updated_configuration_database)) merge updated_configuration_database, system_ram_disk.default_configuration_database;"

To make these things work, architectural changes would have to be made. But Linux is FAR more capable to those changes than Windows. Windows is getting better at that, but ... not yet. WinPE works though right?

Re:Just an excuse (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599438)

Even Microsoft is inconsistant in it. For example, Windows Movie Makes saves project parts to a Local Settings subfolder.... so if you take your project files elsewhere, or even try to just log on to another computer on the network that maps the same My Documents folder, your projects mysteriously fail to open.

Re:Just an excuse (1)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599468)

PITA? Only if you are truly a putz of a programmer.

Everything that would be in "Home/" for a normal *nix install is in "Documents and Settings" or "Users" folder, depending on Windows version.

I've had quite a few Linux/BSD installs not put Home/ in it's own partition, however, traversing a directory tree, and getting which files/directories (and their corresponding disk nodes/table-entries) might take a couple extra minutes, but I wouldn't describe it as particularly challenging code.

Re:Just an excuse (4, Informative)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599598)

Everything that would be in "Home/" for a normal *nix install is in "Documents and Settings" or "Users" folder, depending on Windows version.

Except all the crap in the registry and in 'Program Files' and in... well, every other weird place Windows apps stuff their data.

Re:Just an excuse (2)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599502)

A button like that on Linux probably wouldn't be that big of a deal as it could just work on all the partitions except for /home.

Indeed. Reinstalling Ubuntu on my home systems means installing from the DVD, installing any updates and then copying over about a dozen plain-text config files... job done.

When my laptop drive started getting bad sectors and I replaced it, reinstalling Ubuntu and getting it back to the pre-failure state took about half an hour, whereas reinstalling Windows took three hours just to get to the bare-bones state _before_ I could install all the updates and reinstall all the applications.

Re:Just an excuse (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599632)

Oh, yeah, I forgot the extra couple of hours of trying to understand arcane Windows error messages and hunting around on Google for an explanation before I discovered that the Windows installer was barfing because I'd replaced a 640GB laptop drive with a 750GB laptop drive and found out how to fix that.

Re:Just an excuse (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599660)

That's fine for likely users here, or for any other users likely to be installing a Linux partition, but you underestimate the difficulty regular users have following simple instructions about not hitting dangerous buttons. I'm sure there will be innumerable support calls saying "Where did all my files go?"

Don't hand users a "Go back to start / the way things were" button without ensuring users have a decent understanding of what they are doing. Otherwise the moment anything goes wrong they'll be pressing it desperately in the hopes that the worm will go away or their deleted and/or misplaced files will magically come back. This button better be labeled "Nuke from orbit" with an appropriate icon and 3 levels of "Are you REALLY sure you want to do this?"

Re:Just an excuse (1)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599288)

Assuming that people who run Linux will be stupid enough to dual-boot Windows 8.

The Reset / refresh idea, along with the current crop of American presidential candidates, is proof that we have gone full-retard. They try to take a cute mobile idea, flashing the(OS), ignoring the decades of instances of their own corrupted OS images. Then they say, you can keep your files, which also may be infected with malware causing the problem in the first place.

Good idea, guys. It keeps my PC safe and secure, like UAC. Bra-vo.

Oblig. Troll (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599650)

Ah... The perfect dream of Linux on every device. When Windows is marginalized, there will be no more viruses, no more malware, no incompatibilities, no driver issues, no crashes, just eternal harmony and goodness. Everything will be perfect because our religious views will have been vindicated and all will accept the One True OS. Only then will users suddenly all become geniuses that never fall prey to social engineering, laziness, or ignorance when operating a computer.

The important thing to remember, so that we can hasten the Linux rapture, is to always speak of Micro$oft/Windoze in outrageous hyperbole, so that the unwashed, disinterested masses just trying to accomplish something with their computers, will have their eyes opened to humanity's greatest struggle and join the cause.

Tux be praised! Amen.

Re:Just an excuse (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599516)

Yeah, Microsoft desperately wants to crush the 0.1% of the market that uses Linux on the desktop.

Re:Just an excuse (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599684)

look again... its the 21st century

(oh. bummer :-P)

Interesting, but.... (5, Insightful)

KazW (1136177) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599080)

How long until viruses inject themselves into this recovery image and get "refreshed" onto the new install?

Re:Interesting, but.... (2)

ALeader71 (687693) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599222)

How true, how true. I'm more interested in corporate/government applications for refreshing machines across the enterprise, but we all know it'll take 3-5 years just top upgrade everyone to Windows 7, much less Windows 8.

Re:Interesting, but.... (2)

KazW (1136177) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599296)

I forgot to add that the reason for re-installing is because you're installing from a known-to-be-clean source. Once viruses get into the image, what's the point?

It's not mentioned, but it'd be nice if you could save the image on an external drive that you could unplug from the system to keep the image safe. Before I switched to using Linux on my desktop, I did much the same thing with a Clonezilla image.

Re:Interesting, but.... (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599318)

I was thinking have it be on an encrypted partition that you said the password for on the initial install or first boot... that way you don't have to worry about your grandmother losing the external drive its saved on.

Re:Interesting, but.... (1)

Pieroxy (222434) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599464)

If you give an external drive to your grandma and expect her to keep it safe, the problem is you ;-)

Leave with the drive after the install!

Re:Interesting, but.... (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599484)

Even if you store the image on a clean source, what if the restoring application itself is infected? You simply can't trust anything that boots from he same hard drive.

Re:Interesting, but.... (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599734)

Even if you store the image on a clean source, what if the restoring application itself is infected? You simply can't trust anything that boots from he same hard drive.

Well, you think it through a bit.

First, the recovery image has to be "safe". There are very few admin tasks you can do that won't trigger some sort of UAC thing or other task, and users run as low priviledge by default. Thus standard OS permissoins can keep the recovery image safe (priviledge escalation bugs notwithstanding). Next you sign the images - the private key of which requires a password), but verification of which can be done with the public key.

Finally - Windows 8 can boot from a VHD disk image - guess what? The recovery image is the boot source. The image can be verified using the public key, if it fails, the recovery fails.

Not foolproof, but a lot can be accomplished using standard OS protections and security.

And most malware these days don't bother trying to get admin because it triggers alarms. So they just infect the local user profile and perform botnet duties.

Re:Interesting, but.... (1)

atlasdropperofworlds (888683) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599722)

Win8 is going to be a tablet and desktop OS. The reset feature is just like a mobile device "reset to factory" feature. It's a consistent feature, really. Obviously, you still have the option to install from a clean source.

Re:Interesting, but.... (1)

nman64 (912054) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599354)

Why bother injecting themselves into the image when they can almost certainly disable the feature altogether.

Re:Interesting, but.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599670)

Why? Because if a virus creator (hacker) can reinstall the virus when you refresh the OS, he can be sure that the virus survives a refresh/reinstall. Power users might not be fooled by a virus injecting itself into the image (by using an image known to be clean) but the average "Joe Sixpack" that knows about and uses this feature will be fooled into thinking he got rid of the virus.

Re:Interesting, but.... (1)

jack the ex-cynic (978760) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599412)

Perhaps Microsoft anticipated this and the images will be digitally signed.

Re:Interesting, but.... (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599624)

Perhaps Microsoft anticipated this and the images will be digitally signed.

They almost certainly are, otherwise this would be almost pointless. The problem is, how do you know it's actually been applied correctly? If I was a virus writer, I'd replace the real reset button with a fake one that did appear to clear everything but in reality gave you an empty, rooted box. To do this properly you don't only need a signed file but also a secure environment, like in the BIOS or something like that which hopefully hasn't been compromised.

Re:Interesting, but.... (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599694)

Perhaps Microsoft anticipated this and the images will be digitally signed.

That could work for the initial install image, but not for a backup the user created; the backup app would need the key to sign the image, so you're toast.

Also, checking the image signature on a multi-gigabyte file could add a few minutes to the reinstall time. Though if it takes as long to install as Windows 7 no-one would notice.

Re:Interesting, but.... (5, Interesting)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599518)

Finally, a valid complaint on this topic, instead of an "It is made by MS, so I'm gonna bitch!"

My first thought reading the article was "If I were writing malware, my first goal would to be infect those files!"

Actually, I've had the same issue with install partitions that many vendors use on their computers - what will keep malware vendors from mucking those up, and screwing up future installs?

Re:Interesting, but.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599520)

This feature come preinstalled.

Re:Interesting, but.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599534)

I would think an MD5 checksum check or something similar should help with that problem...

Re:Interesting, but.... (1)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599690)

An MD5 that you then store on disk along with the refresh image? Not so helpful. You could sign the MD5 hash, but then where do you put the public key to verify the signature. (At that point, at least, you've made it incrementally harder for malware to pull this off, since a fair bit of stuff has to be changed.)

Good luck! (2, Interesting)

MachineShedFred (621896) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599088)

"these features should be very welcome on the desktop, too."

Yeah, until someone writes a malware which cracks open the stored image file and inserts itself. You can reset your infection with the rest of Windows!

Re:Good luck! (5, Insightful)

Overly Critical Guy (663429) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599246)

Well, you can say that about any backup. With all due respect, your post is a bit of a karma whore...

Re:Good luck! (0)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599388)

You're right, that is Overly Critical. Consider: the image file (as with most other things Microsoft) gives the malware authors a single attack vector.

Re:Good luck! (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599418)

Well, you can say that about any backup.

How's malware going to insert itself into my Ubuntu DVD before I use that to reinstall?

If the image is writable, then malware can infect it so that it's reinstalled whenever you 'reset' the OS.

Re:Good luck! (1)

rev0lt (1950662) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599674)

Don't worry, when Ubuntu is attractive enough to be a target to desktop malware, they will find a way. Considering the somewhat recent debian repository incident, I wouldn't be overly confident about the purity of both your DVD and the subsequent GB of updates it will download after install.

Re:Good luck! (1)

nman64 (912054) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599424)

In general, backups should be stored separately from the system. Backups at rest should not be at risk of attack from the infected system. It has already been suggested elsewhere in this discussion that Windows should allow the baseline image to be stored on removable media, and that is definitely a good idea. Without that, the baseline image is subject to much of the same risk as the running system.

Re:Good luck! (-1, Flamebait)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599458)

I could crack open your momma's ass and insert myself, but that would make her the whore, not me.

But seriously, if you were gonna attack somebody for adding meaningless fluff to this discussion, you should attack this this [slashdot.org] totally unfunny guy, who is now at +4, or the guy who responded to him saying nothing but "mod up, made me LOL."

LOL.

Re:Good luck! (1)

Pieroxy (222434) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599482)

Today, you reinstall from a CD / DVD. Go get a virus that can inject itself into that !

The point of the GP is that it is as meaningless as a backup.

Re:Good luck! (1)

rev0lt (1950662) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599710)

There have been some BIOS virus proof-of-concept over the years, and EFI boot will present a brand new attack vector for persistent malware. So, reinstalling from a CD/DVD may not be enough to prevent infection.

Re:Good luck! (1)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599616)

This is already possible with System Restore.

The current solution to this is to deny all users access to the System Restore files and only allow the SYSTEM "user" access. The same methods will likely be used for the reset/refresh functionality.

Re:Good luck! (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599654)

The current solution to this is to deny all users access to the System Restore files and only allow the SYSTEM "user" access.

Because malware could never get system access.

Until the malware get smart (4, Insightful)

NiteMair (309303) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599100)

Once malware developers get their hands on this, they'll be sure to find a way to infect the process such that their stuff gets "reset" and "refreshed" along with everything else.

I doubt it will be that useful to evade the really nasty malware, but at least it will provide an easy way for someone to "go back to step 1" with their computer after they ruined it all by themselves... or even someone who wishes to give it to a friend/family member/goodwill for recycling.

I suspect one of the main reason people throw away computers after they buy a new one, rather than recycle it, is because they're afraid someone else will see all their porn and/or "sensitive documents" that might still be hidden on the machine.

Re:Until the malware get smart (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599184)

Once malware developers...

Are you perhaps referring to HP, Asus, Dell, ect?

Re:Until the malware get smart (2)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599260)

All they will have to do is appear as a Metro app to windows

Re:Until the malware get smart (1)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599672)

As I stated elsewhere this is already possible with System Restore, except ACLs block it for at least minimal protection. Of course refresh/reset is NOT a security feature, it strikes me more as a maintenance feature, for when various registry settings get messed up or otherwise things break mysteriously in Windows, you can just go back and have it fixed. It sounds like System Restore but it would avoid trouncing user data (unless you tell it to) and it would backup more than just program binaries and the registry.

Editing (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599108)

"Metro apps in tact" should be "Metro apps intact".

timothy really ought to be able to spot an error like that.

this kinda says something.... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599118)

...about the innate instability of an OS, that they need buttons to reset everything back to bare metal

Re:this kinda says something.... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599312)

...about the innate instability of an OS, that they need buttons to reset everything back to bare metal

Or perhaps it says something about incompetence of its users, being unable to fix problems they have caused? Many I've seen posts by users about "reinstalled (Linux distro) n-times and it's still not working!". Kind of reminds me of users that "reinstall windows applications" despite windows not having a problem with DLL hell for over a decade (SxS versioning) or even inability to write crap all over the OS directories for about half a decade.

PS. Wasn't it apple that came up with their "timemachine" OS snapshots first? You may also want to read the last line of the summary.

Re:this kinda says something.... (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599556)

The key problem with Windows isn't windows itself but the legacy of old apps that need admin access to install and run (Who have their roots back in DOS, Windows 3.1 and Windows 95-ME). Meaning for most home users their normal account is an Admin Account because that is the one that works.

Linux and Unix based systems doesn't usually have that issue as much as files can be placed and linked in ones home directory, and most programs have been programmed to be be ran by non-root users.

However when I was kid first Learning Linux, back in 1994 I almost always used root and hosed up my system to a point where I needed to re install because I have no idea what I did. So I needed to do a clean re-install to get it back to normal... (And get crazy devices like my monitor to work again). As I grew up and know much more I don't tend to need to re install my systems as much... Because I know what to do. That includes Windows, Linux, Unixs, and Mac

Re:this kinda says something.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599416)

This. Why include a button like this when they could once and for all fix the scaling (registry, logging, services, crash dump) problems Windows has always had? WinRot is a serious issue that has never been addressed beyond "well, just reinstall the OS."

My iPhone has this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599128)

What's up with one touch factory reset? Is it good or is it whack?

Re:My iPhone has this (1)

NiteMair (309303) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599200)

I found it pretty useful when my company gave me a used iPhone from a previous employee...

ONE TOUCH FACTORY RESET IS ON TEH SPOKE (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599242)

 

So basically. (1)

toddmbloom (1625689) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599172)

They're just doing the same thing Dell and other distributors have been doing for the past couple of years?

Re:So basically. (1)

SimonTheSoundMan (1012395) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599460)

99% of them reformat the drive.

Not quite "refresh" like in TFA, or like OS X's archive and install. Windows never works well after a reinstall, usually ends up with a ton of error messages and apps crashing. Let's hope it works for Windows 8.

drill a hole in a watermellon for peace (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599176)

Windows 8, how long till I can put my pee pee into it?

Familiar from somewhere (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599180)

Oh yeah. [apple.com]

You don't get it (1)

FunkyLich (2533348) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599186)

... you insensitive clod. It is part of increased stability in Win8. "Look, I have managed to reset this 6 times in just 5 minutes and it is still working." What I want to see is a big button, right next to the windows logo labeled: "Convert to DRM"

Snark (2, Informative)

Overly Critical Guy (663429) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599188)

Could the submission be any snarkier? Malware is already a big problem on Android. I also think people underestimate Windows 8--as Google starts offering its own phones and tablets, angered Android licensees may be swayed toward putting Windows 8 on their devices. I just think you should never dismiss Microsoft.

Re:Snark (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599294)

So aside from the secondary markets (not installed by default), please point me to all this "Malware" on android.

Re:Snark (1)

Riceballsan (816702) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599568)

There have been a couple malware issues in the official market. Admitted the issues are still ridiculously small for the hype they get. Oh yeah it's as bad as a PC... Even in windows 7 days, I would bet at the least, 1 in 5 windows 7 users have had a virus infection. While I would estimate the android numbers to be 1 in 5,000 or so, and the majority of those stem from people attempting to pirate apps via shady chinese marketplaces. Androids policies are done intelligently, they have a location that is safe and basic for the dumb users to go to, but freedom to the outside world. The windows 8 phone does most of this pretty well, but I do wonder if they will be vulnerable to attacks due to, 1. Being a very large target (cross-platform malware that works on your PC and tablet) and 2. Dumb users are used to going to random webpages to get applications on windows, and just by nature will be more inclined to do it on a windows phone than on an android.

Old feature, new name (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599190)

You can already restore Windows to a previous state.

Re:Old feature, new name (1)

tunapez (1161697) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599676)

Yes, and if you're trying to solve a malware problem the result is an infected version of a previous state.

I give the new implementation 3 months from RC release until it's rendered obsolete, let alone a liability.

slashdot needs this feature too... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599208)

...to reset it back to a time when it wasn't shitty and packed full of hiveminded me-too motherfuckers.

Re:slashdot needs this feature too... (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599314)

An ignore feature would be sufficient for that. It should also include an option to ignore dups.

I've already got that... (5, Interesting)

Livius (318358) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599232)

...with one line of bash script. On my XP machine, there are three partitions: for Windows, software, and documents (Think /bin, /usr, /home) The Linux side has a zip archive of the windows partition. When I want to restore WIndows, I boot into Linux and run unzip and just overwrite the whole partition.

Re:I've already got that... (1)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599542)

Wow, that is an excellent idea. I am going to try that next time.

Re:I've already got that... (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599582)

Fortunately this idea is sufficiently obscure that malware doesn't know about it. So your zip file, and the Linux system that holds it, are safe. If this catches on, malware writers might figure it out. I do something similar, but being overly paranoid I have the partition sector image file saved (compressed with xz which gets it tighter) on a DVD that can also boot its own Linux. I also have the Linux system saved the same way on another DVD. And lately to support my netbooks more conveniently, I have a SDHC memory card set up the same way. I went with SDHC since USB doesn't have a read-only switch.

Re:I've already got that... (1)

nospmiS remoH (714998) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599704)

... and then spend hours waiting for Windows Update to update ... reboot ... update ... reboot ... while hoping that there isn't some horrible worm that will take over your machine while your waiting to get the critical patch that was published 20 "Patch Tuesdays" after your zip archive.

Re:I've already got that... (1)

Tyr07 (2300912) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599728)

Yeah but all the files that install components into your windows folder etc. That software is borked and needs to be reinstalled. Still lose your registry entries too.

Ultimately no matter than reinstalling from a disc or any other format. Normal user puts in a disc, clicks a few buttons, it's done. Someone has a linux partition, boots into it, clicks a few things (Or types if you don't bother with a gui) and done. Same problems either way. Nothing new here.

The thing about this that is nice, is the OS is designed to account for this, and you don't have to configure squat to do it. Just push a button.

features ? (2)

Torvac (691504) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599262)

instead of fixing the relevant issue it gets built in backup/snapshot ?

Where, EXACTLY where they be putting these (1, Insightful)

tmosley (996283) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599302)

disastrously destructive buttons? Yeah, that's what we all need, a button you can push that destroys all your data. Sort of like having the big red button to launch the nukes right next to the big red light switch button.

Re:Where, EXACTLY where they be putting these (1)

nman64 (912054) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599546)

Don't worry, the nuke button is actually blue [etsy.com] to prevent exactly this kind of problem.

"keep your installed Metro apps in tact" (5, Funny)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599316)

<sigh>

Sounds useful, as I currently keep them in old mayonnaise jars.

This fixes my biggest problem. (2)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599326)

will reinstall Windows 8, but keep your documents and installed Metro apps in tact

I've traced almost all of my Windows desktop performance problems back to the registry getting out of tact.

Are there any actual human editors involved in the publishing process, here?

Two on-chip solutions would be nice (3, Interesting)

Tyr07 (2300912) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599328)

What I'd like to see is OS on a chip.

Two stages - Core OS chip so is need to absolutely 100% load a factory image, that is it. No ability to write to this chip at all.

Secondary chip - More like a bios chip. Can be modified to load patches kernels etc. So if you've "updated" windows, it flashes it with the updates which load ontop of the core chip. Still could be very fast.

Then your hard drive loads all third party software / addons / documents.

I think it'd be exceptionally fast, not perfect but a much more secure setup (As you can flash the modded update chip or reset it to factor using the core chip)
and a marvel in technology.

It's a bad sign... (3, Insightful)

Theaetetus (590071) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599356)

... when you design your OS to require frequent re-installation.

No way (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599382)

Of course there will be no way that malware could ever alter the saved images ... no way ... right? ... uh ... right? ... oh wait! There it is, it just popped up a message and said I don't need to insert the DVD afterall.

Why not Fix the Real Problem? (1)

strick1226 (62434) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599410)

At first, I thought, "Perfect! This is exactly what Windows has needed for years--especially since the introduction of the registry and the 'cruft' that builds up over 1-2 years of use on the average PC."

Then, after a bit, it hit me how these features really are only necessary due to an antiquated, OS model that would be better served with a complete and total overhaul. OS X might not be for everyone, but the reliance on .plist files seems to work much better in the long run than a complicated mess like the registry often becomes.

external storage (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599420)

Microsoft should force you to burn the image onto DVD's or format then load onto a USB flash drive. The reset image should never be stored locally. PERIOD.

Won't this cost PC hardware makers big-time? (3, Insightful)

tkrotchko (124118) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599432)

After all, the only reason people buy a new PC these days is when the old one runs so slow from bloatware, adware, and crapware the user usually installs?

You might argue that Microsoft is set to destroy the entire tech industry if people won't buy new PC's.

Wipes out extra margin for retailers? (1)

SeanDS (1039000) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599456)

Selling recovery discs for retail-bought machines (either pre-made discs from the manufacturer or discs produced from the recovery partition on the customer's machine before they take it home) is a way retailers and OEMs add value to their low margin hardware sales. Some discs from manufacturers cost up to £30, with a similar cost for the burning-the-recovery-partition-to-DVDs service from retailers in the UK like PC World and Comet. Having a reset/refresh button in Windows 8 will all but eliminate this extra margin stream. It'll be interesting to see what retailers do to make up for this loss.

Wait for the support calls... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38599492)

"I had a problem with my PC so I hit the Reset option and Windows is working again but I can't find any of my documents..."

Same Issues as Imaging? (1)

syntap (242090) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599536)

When storing off images of "fresh" installs, a few hardware changes here and seventy-two Windows security updates there still make recovery a long process. Blowing away to factory works well on a tablet or phone because the hardware doesn't change, and the reset bases itself on the currently-installed version of the OS.

If Reset and Refresh incorporates security patches as they are applied I suppose things would be a little easier.

If its on a harddrive (3, Insightful)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599550)

Then its subject to corruption/infection. Also when your drive dies, you are still up the creek without recovery disks.

So Microsoft has no confidence in ITSELF? (1)

SuhlScroll (925963) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599622)

Effectively this means Microsoft has no confidence in its own engineering capabilities or its processes that guide third-party software developers. Everyone who's surprised, get out of your office chair right now and break dance on your head in the aisle.

refresh to a new OS (2)

Anon-Admin (443764) | more than 2 years ago | (#38599636)

It would be cool if Linux could read the restore partition, identify the hardware from the stored data, configure it self with the parameters that windows has stored in the refresh image, then build a custom refresh image from the data.

Then we have one button refresh to a Linux based system! No muss, no fuss, simple install at the push of a button.

But I bet Microsoft designs the image in such a way as to encrypt it so that Linux can not do it.

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