25 December 2009

Create Recovery Discs For Your HP Mini 311

There are 3 Setup sheets, 3 Mini booklets - English, Thai, and Bahasa Indonesia included with my HP Mini 311 which I recently bought by swiping my credit card, the very act which, by the way, I'd vowed to myself not to do again at least before the year 2009 ended. But I did, and now I spend my Christmas with my beloved Mini 311 that I will pay with my own hard earned dough like I did my other 2 netbooks.

Back to the main point; I was lucky enough to have gotten a slightly better configuration last Monday. The Mini 311, when it first came out in the Philippine market sometime in late October I think sold for Php 28,944 with these specs:

  • 1.66 GHz Intel Atom N280
  • 160 GB SATA 5400 RPM Hard Drive
  • Windows XP SP3 Home
Now, my HP Mini 311-1002TU (I don't know but I seem to get "TU" labelled Mini's - my HP Mini 1000 is technically a 1001TU) I got at Php 29,948 and 0% installment for 12 months @ 2,495.66:

  • 1.66 GHz Intel Atom N280
  • 250 GB SATA 5400 RPM Hard Drive
  • Windows 7 Starter 32-bit
Imagine for just an additional Php 1,004, I get twice the memory, almost 50% increase in storage capacity and license for newer version of Windows.

And speaking of Windows 7, as I've mentioned earlier, the box contains 3 sets of manuals for 3 different languages but to my utter disappointment, HP was lazy enough so they didn't include recovery discs for the HP Mini 311; the consumer would have to burn those discs themselves. My opinion is that even though the unit comes with an external DVD burner (which is nice and spiffed up fancy itself), the recovery discs should've been made readily available starting day 1.

But they are not so here's what you do to create them:

What you need: 3 DVD-R's or DVD+R's or upto 20 CD-R's - though the bundled DVD drive can burn DVD-RW's, DVD-RAM, Dual-Layer DVD, the recovery disc creator program cannot handle these other formats so stick to the aforementioned formats.

All you have to do is, once you've set up your computer for first use and with your external DVD drive plugged in with a blank optical media inside, go to Start (which is actually just a glowing Windows orb where the normal old "Start" button on Win XP below was) > Recovery Manager.

Then progress through the dialogue windows that will appear in the ff. progression below:

In "I'd like to take precautions" column, choose "Recovery Disc Creation"

Click on "Next"

This will take a while, be patient

And if you can only do this procedure ONCE. In case you attempt to create another set (if you're like me who wants to get a proof of concept of sorts, or for just the fun of trying) you'll be shunned immediately and get this message:

But if let's say, for some reason, you weren't able to finish burning the entire set of discs - you ran out of DVD-R's and had to get some more, the application is smart enough to remember that you haven't really finished the last 2 discs so, technically, you haven't burned "one set", it'll automatically resume from when you last stopped.
These discs are what you use to restore your HP Mini 311 back to factory settings. Keep them safe - I suggest creating ISO images of these discs so in case something happens to the ones you've just created (optical media deteriorate over time), you can burn another set using your preferred burner application even if HP's Recovery Manager refuses to accommodate you.

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