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Windows 7 64 Bit and Lessons Learned From H.D. Crash


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Years ago I bought my Dell Computer, i7 2.8 8g ram, AMD Radeon upgrade on the video card 1T SATA H.D. , all at the time, a pretty high end computer, not the highest but again, at that time, above average. So, I know an H.D. will only last so long. I installed another drive as a back up drive. As the years went by I waited on the year end sales and loaded up on addons! Luckily, I back most of them up to the second H.D. Sure enough , I just got some really great scenery and a week later the H.D. gave me the blue screen and a few days later it was gone!


So, I took the computer to the local repair guy and asked him to upgrade me to a 2T drive. He didn't have anything but 1T's so I went to Best Buy and found they had a sale going, 2T Seagates for $149 BUT....3T for $109......well no brainer there, go for the big one! After all, I managed to fill a 1T , why not!


Well, lesson 1. My BIOS, will only support 2 T and due to the type of Motherboard, the BIOS cannot be changed. Well, no big deal, I still got the original 2T of space I wanted for $50 less than the actual 2T drive. And if I decided to update the motherboard, cpu later it will cost less than a new computer, and I will have 3T of space. After the repair was done I was anxious to start restoring my FSX.


I decided to do some research, and see what the best way to install FSX was. Well, I found NUMEROUS, strings about installing it to the root folder instead of Program Files (X86) file. So, I did that. I tested FSX all along the way, had a few issues installing things that wanted to go to the other folder, but in the end I got it! Keep in mind , I was testing all along the way.


So, after three days of rebuilding FSX, I started it up after my final install. CRASH TO DESKTOP! No matter what I did, remove addons, system restore, NOTHING would fix it. More research, and nothing. So , I de-installed it, cleaned everything up in the folders and got ready to try again. This time I started looking other things up before I made the same mistake, whatever that was.


I foudn that, a LOT of people are running FSX in the root folder just fine. But I could not. All my addons , in the auto install program wanted to install to "Programs ( X86 ). So I looked up, "What is the Programs ( X86 ) folder for? The answer I found was to run any of the older 32 bit programs without error messages. Well, as it turns out FSX is not a 64 bit program, and the addons are not either! Will they run, sure, but some wont. Which ones? I dont know. So I reinstalled to "Programs ( X86 )" and am having no issues.


That was Lesson 2.


Now it is time to reload all my addons.....but , guess what? I saved the zip files, and when you open some it wants a key. Even better , some of the do not tell you what the addon is until you enter the Key! The only thing it told me was I got it from Flightsim.com. Worse yet, I discovered those that I did not save to my back up drive, and decided to just down load again from Flightshop , had expired! So, it costs $5 to reactivate the link. But thats not all. I got about 60% from the Flightshop, maybe 30% from Just Flight, and the rest from various sites such as Alabeo, Carenado, PC Aviator and a couple of other site. Problem was I could not remember what I got from where, and the zips I saved wanted a Key but I had no idea what site to look for the key!


Lesson 3.....Do not only save your downloads but organize your downloads, use notepad to save the key number, and enter the name of the site you got it from.


So, to sum it up, if this helps anyone else, remember


1. Make sure your computer can actually use the upgrades you buy for it.

2. Back up everything!

3. Organize your back ups. Label things, save the keys so you have it and know where it goes when reloading addons.

4. Dont get fancy with the installation unless you REALLY know what your doing.

5. Test FSX along the way. All it takes is one bad addon to screw the entire installation. If you add all of them in at once, you will have no idea which one is causing the problem when things go wrong.

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