Wiping The Hard Drive
Once all necessary files are safely tucked away on external storage, it's almost time to reformat the hard drive. But first, it's good practice to grab the make and model numbers for as many of the target system's hardware components as possible. At the very least, be sure to record which network and display adapters are present. This ensures that if those components are not properly configured by the Windows 7 install, the system won't be visually crippled and/or unable to connect to the Internet for long. Boot your Windows 7 disc or ISO image and follow the prompts to the selection screen for installation type (shown). Select Custom Install. Attempts to "Upgrade" will fail. Continue to follow prompts and enter information as requested. Once a fresh Windows 7 boots, restoring data comes next.