Recovery Disks For Sony VAIO System Restore

| January 14, 2011 | 131 Comments

As with most computers built by a major brand name manufacturer, your Sony VAIO can be reset to factory condition using Sony VAIO recover disks that you make or via a recovery partition on your computer’s hard drive. You are responsible for making the DVDs that will help you do a factory reset of your PC, so you should do that as soon as possible after purchasing your Sony VAIO computer.

The following instructions will instruct you on how to make those disks and how to use the recovery partition to backup and restore your Sony VAIO computer. Or read our other Sony computer tutorials.

Why Would You Need To Recover Your Sony VAIO Computer?

Revert Sony VAIO Computer To Factory Defaults using sony restore Disks Or Recovery PartitionThere are a lot of reasons why you would need to recover your Sony computer. If your computer becomes unstable and crashes frequently, if it has a bad computer virus, or if your Sony VAIO has simply become unusable. When it gets to this point, you need to revert your computer back to factory setting, which will erase everything, and return your computer to that lightning fast machine you remember and love. You can do this two ways. You can use recovery media you should have already made. Or you can use a recovery partition on the hard drive.

Create Sony VAIO System Restore Media

Use the following method to create your Sony VAIO recovery disks. When done, store these disks in a safe location:

  • Go to Start>All Programs>VAIO Care. Select Recovery and restore, then Recovery. Then click Create Recovery Media.
  • Follow the on-screen instructions to create your media.

Use The Recovery Disks To Restore Your Sony VAIO To Factory Default

If your computer becomes unstable, you need to use the disks you created in the step above to erase and format your computer. To perform a complete recovery perform the following steps:

  • If you are using an external drive, power on a press F11 to enter the boot options menu. From there, select the USB drive.
  • Otherwise, just insert the first recovery disk and reboot the computer. The recovery process will begin when the system reboots.

Use the Recovery Partition To Revert Your Sony VAIO TO Factory Default

While you should have a set of recovery disks for your Sony computer, you can actually use that recovery partition to restore your computer to factory condition.

  • Power on the computer and press F10 several times.
  • Choose Start Recovery Wizard
  • Follow the onscreen prompts.

The restore process should take less than an hour to complete. When finished, the computer will restart and you will be presented with a Sony VAIO that has been reverted back to factory defaults. Be sure to immediately run Windows Update, install an anti-virus (unless there is already one installed) and then reinstall your back-up data and programs. Your Sony computer should now run faster and be more reliable.

If you have questions or comments about the above procedure be sure to let us know.

Category: Sony

Dave

About the Author ()

Dave has been providing free computer repair and tech support advice online since 2002. Join us on our forums and be sure to subscribe to our newsletter for weekly tips and other helpful computer articles. Connect with me on: Google+

Comments (131)

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  1. I would recommend using an imaging program like Acronis to make a disc image. That way you can create an image of exactly what you want, and leave out all the stuff you don’t. For instance, you can delete the worthless trial software that comes with the computer and install your programs. Then you can run all the updates to windows etc. After you have made the image, it will be a clean install that you can perform anytime there is a problem. This is much better than recovery discs. Acronis Home 2011 is actually not expensive, but you may need a computer tech to help you set it up.

    • ian says:

      SONY VPCEH2JFX

      I just got off the phone with a sony rep. I begged SONY for a recovery CD while we were under warranty and they said that the partition recovery would work just fine. The recovery cd made from the computer did not work, the partition recovery also failed. The CD DID NOT work and now they want me to pay for the same Recovery CD I should have had in the first place when my warranty was active.

      IS THIS JUST ANOTHER WAY FOR SONY TO MAKE MONEY?

  2. stephen says:

    when i press f10 several times it doesnt do anything it just goes to the microsoft logo and everything and then gives me the error thing saying msgina.dll failed to load, etc. please help me

  3. Sivakumar says:

    I am need sony-vaio recovery disk how can i downlode..
    regards
    Shiva

  4. Hadi Athar says:

    Hello Sir,

    I have bought my computer about two months back but the windows has some problem, then the IT officer formated the original windows-7 and re-instaled another Windows-7. Currently the computer does not work properly, because the drivers are missing. The resolution is not so good. Is it posible to recover the oreginal windows from net? if so how we can re-instal the original windows. Please help me. Hadi

  5. cindy says:

    I have a sony vaio vgn-a290. I am trying to reset it back to factory settings but have no discs. I have tried numerous times using f-10 (also f-8 and f-11) and no success. I also tried going to the start up menu in order to find Vaio Care and recovery, but it’s not there. What other options do i have or should i just order a disc from Sony?

  6. Keyur says:

    Hello,
    I’ve Sony Vaio VPCEA16FG. I’ve created the recovery discs(4 discs). I got preloaded full softwares like adobe photoshop elements,so will photoshop be deleted if i recover it?

  7. SonyVaio VPCEA16FG says:

    Hi I have a Sony Vaio VPCEA16FG. I dint create a recovery disk and tried using the Recovery partition to restore the entire system back to factory settings. But during the Windows installation, an error occurs which says “”Windows cannot complete installation. To install Windows on this computer, restart the installation” and this occurs every time a start the computer. I tried running the hardware diagnostics and all other possibilites, but the problem persists. Can anybody help me diagnose the problem? Is it possible that the Recovery partition is corrupted?

    @Keyur: I hope you have found the solution to the problem you had posted. Did you get back the preloaded software like Adobe Photoshop Elements when you restored the system?

  8. Laleh says:

    Hi,
    I had created a DVD and a CD media kit 4 years ago, but now I have lost them. I was trying another one, but it gives me an error of please insert a disk. actually it couldn’t recognised the CD, even the CD ROM is ok.
    what’s your suggestion for recovering entire system without the recovery kit??
    Thanks

    • I would try ordering them form the manufacturer (Dell, Hp, etc).

    • Boyd says:

      Hopefully this helps. Recently on a new computer I was having problems in creating the Factory Default Discs because I was trying to use CD discs when it needed DVD discs. In your post you say it couldn’t recognize the CD. Did you mean to say DVD or are you trying to do this with a CD?

  9. dona says:

    my vaio vgn -sr13gn was corrupted and i want to recover it using recovery disc but its not working when i load the recovery disc still its not working at all.how im going to deal in this case?

  10. majid says:

    Hi,
    I bought a Vaio VPCF136 1 month ago.
    I didn’t prepare a recovery media, because I didn’n know about it. Now I want to creat a recovery media, but there is a problem and my system don’t do it. I checked every thing and I think whole of them are correct. Please help me. What can I do?

  11. malikt says:

    Hello, i have a vaio vgn-a290 with a really bad virus i bought it used and am unable to get ahold of the previous owner how would i reset it without the password?

  12. michar says:

    I’m attempting to do a complete system restore on my VGN-FW375JB using Sony recovery disks I purchased from Sony. Doing hardware diagnostics reports no issues, but when I attempt to do a complete system restore, I get an error code 333 about 2% into the recovery processs. The hard drive is new, and I did a complete erase on it. I had previously installed Vista, but it wouldn’t recognize the key, so I figured a complete restore was the best path. Any ideas?

  13. michar says:

    Here’s an update. So, when my hard drive got corrupted to the point the partition wasn’t recognizable, I bough the new drive thinking I’d recover to it. The new drive was a 500G while the original was 250G. I didn’t think it would matter, and figured I’d attempt to recover data from the drive later. Well, last night I figured there was one other thing to try. I wiped the original drive, reinstalled it, and the purchased Sony disks ran without an issue.

    Since I had previously had success installing Vista on the new drive, I know it is not a hardware compatability issue, and will migrate to it after I have completed all updates, and software reinstalls, but I have to say I’m disappointed. First, no one at Sony appears to know what error 333 is. I even “chatted” with the tech support group, and they pretty much told me as much. Secondly, with the new drive installed, recovery gave every indication of not only recongizing the drive, but even allowed selecting partitioning options. But at this point, I’m assuming the error 333 is tied with the target drive not being the exact same drive as the recovery disks expect. One would think that this would be a well documented error if this is correct. In any case, my laptop is up and running and I’m re-installing the software to get it to a usabe state again.

    • TimO says:

      Hi there,

      When you say “wiped” the c: drive do you mean formatted it to the 250GB or just the c part? Mine has about 2gb hidden partition and the C: partition taking up the rest.
      Had no end of problems with my discs but managed to recover them (no pun intended) but when I use them, I either get a code that means the discs or optical drive is faulty. Last night I had the 333 error!

      Cheers.

  14. Thanks for following up. I think your conclusions about error code 333 are correct. But like you said, at least it’s working now.

  15. aref says:

    hi
    i bought vaio 6 month ago.i have created recovery media disks.yesterday i installed an anti virus software and i used it to check my vaio for virus.sofware found virus and trojan horses i deleted them after restarting my vaio my windows became unstable but i could enter but the window wasnt as usual after trying to restore system to its original factory setting by recovery disks.during recovery i found out that second disk doesnt work so i made to restart my lap top now i cannot enter windows any more.i want to use recovery partition on hard disk this time but i dont how should i do it i appreciate if u could help thanks

  16. Arif says:

    I have a vaio vpcea16fg. I lost my recovery cd and original windows. Now i used windows7 trial package.lots of time i tried to recover using vaio care but after 75% instalation showing eror occard. How can i get recovery cd? Please help me.

  17. Marcelo says:

    I’ve bought a VPCF13WFX Sony Vaio notebook, and am in the need of the media DVDs to restore the system back to the default settings. I haven’t made mine on time, ’cause I’ve bought and installed Win7 portuguese over the original OS. That havocked the hole thing. The story goes even worse. I’ve called in the tech guy, who just screwed up the rest of sanity that was left. Fact is: I need the media to restore back te note to original setup. Can anyone help me? TY in advance!

  18. karen queiffer says:

    i have an hp laptop. i performed a test because it was not working and now it says Bad Hard Disk. Would inserting a recovery media help. i have to order it. please let me know asap.

    • The recovery disk will not help if the hard drive has died. Either way, you’ll need the recovery media–and a new hard disk. Good luck. If you have any questions, be sure to ask on our forums.

  19. Terry G says:

    I purchased the recovery disk from Sony, worth about 50.00. I purchased a new Hdrive since having the original crashed twice on me before. So, I went to the original size, 250 to new one with 250. So, after using the recovery disk, it fails at any option, creating partition, restoring to C drive, to original state, etc. It gives ERROR333 after 1% of formating to create new partitions. I tried every possible option on the recovery disk. The diagnostic passes fine, inclouding HDD. So, my final step is to go back to the original HDD. Figuring and from reading a previous experience on a guy posted here. Now, I assume that using a different brand, does not matter size of HDD, it would give you problems to reconfigure.

    So. I’ll post my results tomorrow.

  20. Sarah says:

    Hi there,
    My FE-series VAIO has various ‘issues’ and is runnign slowly so I intend to take it to the computer store to get it wiped and Windows reinstalled. My VAIO came with full versions of Adobe Photoshop, Premier Elements and Acrobat Standard. Will I lose these if I give the computer guys my recovery disks?
    Thanks for your help, I’m really worried about this!

    • Dave Dave says:

      Sarah, were you given an Applications DVD? Normally, a company will ship both a recovery disk and an applications disk with any special software installed. You might ask them to image the drive prior to performing a recovery. An image is basically a clone of the drive. If anything happens, they can re-image the new drive with the clone. In addition, try and go into these programs and see if you can find and copy down their serial key codes just as an extra precaution. Good luck with the repair.

  21. alabaas aborawi says:

    something wrong happened with my vaio vpccw13fx so I tried to do a recovery with a recovery DVDs I made before,but an error happened while recovering and I lost my windows, so I formatted it with my windows DVD,because of that I’ve lost all my supporting programs from Sony vaio ,can I restored them by my recovery DVDs that I made before formatting?and can I use these DVDs to recover my vaio if something happened after I formatted it ?.

  22. Paul says:

    I am wondering if anyone solved the “error 333″ problem with the Sony laptop recovery disks. The e-mail tech center just gives me the instructions to do the recovery, or to clean my recovery disks. I am trying to get my new hard drive installed with the original Windows. When I try to do a full recovery, the process stops at the “formatting” stage at 2%. From there, it will go only to reboot. Thanks.

  23. Michael Mai says:

    Hi,

    I got a Sony F series, I tried to recover my laptop to factory default by the “Recovery Partition” in my hard drive section but for some reason. It did not work. Would should I do?

  24. innam says:

    I have multiple partitions on my hard-drive i want reset c drive without effecting other partitions using VAIO care rescue….. plz help me

  25. Phil Cool says:

    My SONY VIAO (VGN-NS11OE) was upgraded from Vista to Win7 Ultimate and working perfect. After I installed Pinnacle Studio 14 and used for some time, the “RealTek” audio failed to pick incoming sound e.g. recorded sound. I later discovered that is has been disabled and I tried to uninstall and to reinstall it but it vanished. How do I get the inbuilt mic to work normal again please.

    • Dave Dave says:

      Have you tried a system restore point? Start>Programs>accessories>system tools>system restore. Go back to a date preceding the problem.

  26. Elmira says:

    I have a Sony vaio EA2GFX ,I want to use the recovery disks to restore my Sony VAIO to factory default but I dont know I should delete the drive partitons that I have made or not?If yes what should I do with the free space after deleting?

    • Dave Dave says:

      The recovery process will remove those partitions for you if you created them after you bought the computer. It will revert everything back to factory condition, so make sure you back up.

  27. Shankar putta says:

    Hi I have Sony lap and I don’t have recovery disk how can I get factory settings.

    • Dave Dave says:

      Get the manual at the Sony website for you model. It will likely describe how. If not, you may need to order disks through them for a small fee.

  28. Gabe says:

    I’m getting error 320 what’s wrong it does not wana recover what shall I do???

  29. Matt says:

    Did anyone figure out a solution to error 333? I bought a new hard drive after I had problems with the original. I figured for a couple dollars more I should get the 500gb instead of the 250gb. I ran the VAIO Recovery Center disc and it repeatedly said error 333 even after I made every change I could thing of. I have searched all over and haven’t found an answer anywhere.

    • Silas says:

      Were you able to find a solution to error 333? I replaced a 320gb with a 500gb hard drive. I have not been able to solve this issue either.

  30. mohammadreza says:

    i installed a version of windows 7 in vaio notebook . when the installation finished and i restarted the windows i faced to vaio care rescue . this page wanted to restore my computer and i clicked to restore but this action format my partitions . what shoud i do to recover my lost files? please help me . how can disable this action?

    • Dave Dave says:

      Some of the files might be recoverable. You can try using third party software like Recuva (free) and see if that helps find the missing data. The more you use the computer the more those old files will be overwritten.

  31. Angus Hayhow says:

    I have a Vaio that stopped functioning entirely and my dad took it to the IT department at his work, they said it would be fixed by using recovery disks but I don’t know what to buy, or whre to buy them from. The gave me a note saying
    ‘SONY VAIO
    VGN – T231WM
    (model PCG – 4N1M)
    RECOVERY DISKS’
    I don’t know if that’s enough information for you to be able to help, but basically, what should I be buying and where from?
    Thanks

    • Dave Dave says:

      I couldn’t find that model in their support section. You may need to contact them to purchase recovery disks if your computer does not have a recovery partition. Did you try looking through the Start menu for any recovery options? If there’s noting there, you will likely have to order these disks through Sony for a small fee.

  32. Krystal L says:

    Hello everyone,
    I have a Sony Vaio from about 2 years ago…It has a virus I do believe, it turns on and all that. Anyways where do I get these recovery discs? Or can I just back up with a USB. Also, does F11 actually restore the computer, even without the recovery discs. If I cant get a hold of the discs I just want to reformat, because I cant wait around I need the computer for school….

    • Dave Dave says:

      If your computer is only two years old, you should be able to restore it via the recovery partition, yes. Just remember to backup any important data.

  33. Vincent C. says:

    Hey guys,

    So I think a person had the same problem as me, but there is nothing connected to my computer i.e, printer, camera, mouse etc and it still keeps restarting and giving me the “Windows had to be shutdown unexpectedly, press OK to restart the process.”

    My sister took the computer to school and started having problems. It would go to a blue screen with white writing and say, “purging files and windows is restarting,” but it never goes to windows. It shows the windows symbol with black background then that screen pops up before shutting down. I bought the backup disks from Sony and did the whole first process of switching disks. It goes through all that 100% then goes to a black screen and says on the bottom “starting to install”…then I get the whole windows shut down unexpectedly please restart and every time the computer restarts that pops up. Again nothing is connected and I even did the process twice with the same results. Please help!

  34. cruz b says:

    i tried to recover to factory setting without making the disks. I got an error 320 and it said to reboot wheni did it says operating systen not found. i hit f10 and it lets me try to recover again and i get a 320 or 385 error and operating system not found wheni reboot.

    • Dave Dave says:

      The 320 error seems to point to an optical drive failure. Does it seem like it’s reading the disks? I would see if you can download the manual for your specific model and see if you can find more specific info.

  35. respected sir/madam
    i have lost my recovery disk of sony vaio model number vpcea32en and i need it very urgent because my lap top is not working properly. so can u give me any ideas regarding my problems. Please help.

    • Dave Dave says:

      I looked up the manual for that model and could not find which function key launched the recover partition. Look at the screen very carefully when booting and see if it asks you to hit a key like F11 or F12. If it doesn’t, tap F8 when booting and look at the boot options–one of those might launch the backup and recovery manager. Otherwise, you’ll have to can Sony and purchase a set of recovery disks. But I’m pretty sure this model has a recovery partition.

  36. ed122108 says:

    My VAIO starts to restore but it stops at 75% and shuts off. I did it like 5 more times and it did the same thing. PLZ HELP!!!!!

    • Dave Dave says:

      As always, unplug any external devices (printers, etc) before restoring. Also, is it rebooting or shutting off? A computer that shuts off usually means it is overheating. Check your fans and clean them if necessary.

    • Everton says:

      How did you solve this problem (restore stops at 75%)? I’m having the same problem …
      Thank you!!!

  37. Robin H says:

    Hi. I have a Sony VGN-CR116E. This is an unregonizable model number due to it was a limited edition that was created in pink and a donation was made to breast cancer awareness. Anyhow thats besides the point. I have purchased the Windows vista recovery media disks from sony and at the time my computer was under warranty through bestbuy geek squad. They supposedly wiped my computer and reinstalled everything, however, when I got the computer back majority of memory was gone and I was unable to back-up all my files. I have a feeling they didn’t actually wipe it and then re-install. I am not computer savy and am wondering if anyone out here can give directions on exactly how to wipe the hard drive and re-install. Obviously the re-install would be done with the disks, but the question I have is how do I know that Windows vista is actually on one of those disks? I don’t want to wipe everything and loose windows. Any suggestions? Please……and if anyone knows thanks in advance :)

    • Dave Dave says:

      Recovery disks are an image of the computer the way it came from the factory. Running the recovery disks puts the system back the way it was. If you got the disks directly from Sony, I doubt you have anything to worry about.

  38. Basanth.S says:

    HI,

    I bought a sony vaio VPCEH25EN model about 3 months ago, and had a inbuilt antivirus installed in it(2 months free trail) later when the AV got expired, i unnstalled itand installed AVG anti virus, later when i pushed in for a full scan, it detected a virus and since i couldnt quarantine it, i deleted it, but before deleting it i got a pop up saying deleting this file mite not allow some programs to work properly, to my dismay i neglected it and continued with deletion, later when i restarted my laptop, everything works fine until the movement i enter my login password, after which it just shows up a pitch blank screen…not able to open anything…neither have i created any recovery file, could you please assist me with this, can i take it to a service centre to get it re installed again?? where can i get the recovery files as of now?? Thanks!!!

    • Dave Dave says:

      Your user might have become corrupted. One thing you can try is going into Safe Mode by tapping the F8 key when booting. You should be able to login as Administrator and then go into the control panel and create a new user account. When you restart and boot normally, try logging into the new account.

  39. Mike says:

    I have a PCVRS 420. It will come on to the desktop and that’s it. Mouse doesn’t work and I’ve tried different ones. Starting in safe mode gets same results. I have my Sony restore discs, but wont open them. Do you think the hard drive could be the culprit?

  40. Ankush says:

    Hi Dave,
    Im sort of stuck here with a problem of which solution I couldn’t find googling.
    When I was creating the recovery discs, it asked me for for 3dvd-r and was prepared for it.
    Then it started.. creating image 1of3 , it took around 30min and it wrote on it, while i had also checkmarked to verify data after writing.

    But at the end i get a dialog box stating “verification was cancelled and this disc may be used for recovery” after clicking ok it did not prompted me for any second disc and things came to normal with viao care open. I opened that disc and i saw 4.33 GB is written, fine, but i dint know what to do now :(

    The OS is Windows Home Basic and the laptop VPCEG35EN
    http://www.sony.co.in/product/vpceg35en

    please help now what to do :(. I guess even if I try doing it again, it will waste my another DVD, and still stop after 1.

    • Dave Dave says:

      It may not even let you do it again. This process of making a recovery disk set is frustrating as it often fails. You can try making it again and see what happens. It might actually only need one DVD–not three. Sometimes people will use CDs, and in that case it will need more than one.

      • Ankush says:

        The size of that hidden recovery drive is 11.5 GB which would logically need 3 discs (4.7×3). And Im just wasting my money burning DVDs and all that it shows each time is RECOVERYDISC1. Called up customer care and they told me to insert the second after the first is ejected and I dont get it what wiill happen then as the whole process comes to stand still. Now they have told me to Restore the whole system (I have no idea how that would help being a brand new Laptop. This is totally pissing me off.

        Dave, can you please suggest a third party software that would just do this job smoothly (a freeware prefered). Because I need to urgently begin my work after creating partition in the main C drive. There are 3 primary partitions and im on win7hb.

  41. carlos says:

    I have tried recovering with the 3 discs and it still fails. I get an error 385. So how do I get around this when my other computer is a MAC to get info on this?

  42. Daniel says:

    hello i need help with my vaio
    i had problem with sony vaio. I had it fixed (removed and changed hard disk)
    now i m having trouble putting Vaio care is there somewhere online i can find ?

    • Dave Dave says:

      You really don’t need VAIO Care. You can perform maintenance and other tasks manually. But if you really feel you need it, you might be able to get it online in their support section. Look-up your model and download the application, if available. Good luck.

  43. Charlie says:

    Hi Dave,

    Please can you advise me……I have a Sony Vaio VGN-FW11E that has been having problems for a couple of years now. My computer started saying that the D drive was corrupted and whenever I booted up and it ran through the checking mode, something about deleting of recovering files that had $130 in them kept on repeating and repeating.

    There was no system restore points for me to revert to so whenever it gets too bad I normally create another user account and that seems to do the trick at least for a while. So now I have too many user accounts and my laptop has started running really slow.
    I am considering restoring my Vaio back to its factory settings and hopefully this will sort the problem but from what I have read this only fixes the C drive but my computer only ever says that the problem is with the D drive….

    My Vaio says that I should create some recovery discs but pls answer me this, is there much point createing discs from a computer that is already experiencing problems, I have ran the Sony diagnostic tool and it says that my CPU is ok but I do not have the relevant discs to complete the diagnostic further.

    My anti virus got rid of a couple of trojans last year but it wasn’t able to fix the “damage” that had been done.

    Pls Dave can you advise me on how to tackle this and in not too much of a technical way :)

    Thanks for your help.

  44. Dear Dave,

    i recently bought a Sony Vaio and the option to restore the screen always comes first when I start my computer. It’s really annoying as it only gives me the option to restart the computer. Is there any way to delete this that it does not show any more? It’s the Sony Care Restore window…
    Thanks a lot for you help,
    Daniela

    • Dave Dave says:

      Try Start button, then type msconfig in the search box (run box) and then look under the startup tab. Look for anything related to sony–especially the sony care and deselect it. Restart the computer and it should never load again.

  45. Dan Mong says:

    I have a Sony Viao RX650 that crashed. I purchased a new hard drive and I am attempting to format the hard drive from the Recovery Disk supplied with the computer. But, I keep getting error messages. Incompatible image in use, Stream reading error, or, Unknown error has occurred. I often get through disk one but never through disk two and have never gotten to disk three. The error messages do not happen at the same place in the disk either. I have started over with the format process over a hundred times and it still keeps coming up the same. Do you think that I have damaged recovery disk or is the problem in the computer?

    • Dave Dave says:

      Did you get the new drive from Sony? I ask because some manufacturers with “tattoo” the hard drive so it knows to use the recovery media. Otherwise, you would be able to give the recovery media to all of your friends and neighbors. Not sure if this is the case or not. You may, unfortunately, opt to just buy a copy of Windows.

      I would contact Sony first and see what they say. They might first try sending you new disks. Good luck.

  46. Sarah says:

    I have a Vaio which I think I’ll have to reset to factory settings as it’s crashing a lot, especially when I use the volume control – it seems to get stuck in a loop and keeps flashing up the volume (with the associated beep) and I can do nothing with the machine.
    I created system disks when I first got the laptop about two years ago, but have installed many more programmes since. Do I use these disks or create new ones before resetting? I figure I have to install all my software fresh again anyway – is this right??

    • Dave Dave says:

      Backup all of your important data and then use the disks you made. Yes, you will have to reinstall all of your programs again, so make sure you have everything you need before you start–serial numbers, etc.

  47. Sarah says:

    Thanks for the info Dave – great help!

  48. Everton says:

    Dear Dave,

    My SONY-VAIO VPCF21Z1E model starts to restore but it stops at 75% and stay for all life (I left it about 28 hours after I repeated it more times the proceeding always with ASSIST or F10 to start VAIO care rescue) in screen 75% instalation (BUT my laptop NOT SHUTS OFF only stay with the screen on 75%). I didn’t have recover DVD disks via my recovery partition on my computer’s hard drive, but there is yet this recovery partition (it wasn’t formated ). However, I verified via a boot O.S. Ubuntu disk (LINUX) that others two patitions were formated (C: and Reserved partition). Now I’m trying install Windows Seven by DVD (I think validate the W7 home premium using product key came in my laptop vaio), but I’m having the “same” problem in my proceding installation which after many step of the installation “stops” at – concluding to intallation… lots of time (in this moment already 20 hours and continue concluding to intallation…). I need solve this problem urgently… How do it? Only I wanna to install a Operational System which I wish…

    Please can somebody HELP ME?!!!!!

  49. Please see my solution on Your computer does not have a recovery partition and let me know if it helped you.

  50. kareem says:

    here is what happened, i was using the recovery discs when the power was interrupted in the last stages, now the computer freezes after the windows loading sign appears either in recovery or normal mode. should i format the C drive and then use the recovery disk or it won’t work in this case.
    please help me with this, because it is getting really frustrating.

  51. John says:

    Hello..
    I have a Sony vaio s seriese.
    Recently I had a graphics card problem where it said my main graphics card (AMD), was offline. So I decided to format my laptop.
    Things went well untill it stumbled upon the part where it was re-installing he drivers.. When it gave me the BSOD..
    I’m completely stuck.
    Because I was in a middle of the format I can’t run a safe mode.
    And I can’t get anything done because it won’t finish the format..
    My laptop didn’t come with a recovery disc or anything..
    A penny for a thought? :(

    • Dave Dave says:

      This is going to take a lot of backa nd forth to sort out…please post your question in our forums at http://www.pctechbytes.net so others can get involved and help.

      • Anthony says:

        hey Dave, i have a Sony Vaio f series, and i tried to create my recovery disks but they were interrupted, when i tried to create them again, the option for making recovery disk is not there, so I’m not sure what to do
        please help

        • Dave Dave says:

          I’m not sure you’ll be able to create them again. I’ve never seen the option disappear, but they only allow you to make a single copy. I would contact Sony support and see if they can send you a set of recovery disks for a small fee–as long as the computer isn’t too old, this should not be a problem. There are other options, too. You can use a free program such as DriveImage XML at http://www.runtime.org/driveimage-xml.htm to create a clone of your drive so you can swap out drives if there is ever a problem. If you have a spare hard drive lying around this is a great alternative. Good luck. Join our forums for additional help.

  52. Jarek says:

    Hi Dave, during the recovery process, my vaio stops at 75% and it shows the message error 385, then I click ok button and ther’s another message error 330.I tried to recover several times and several times I had the same problem.Can you please help me?
    thanks,
    cheers,Jarek

  53. KIC says:

    Hey Dave, Great stuff on here.what method is better the recovery discs or using the Partition??? Any Pro-Cons on each? Also, I made recovery discs for my Vaio the day I bought it a few years ago, but now I cannot find them. Does it matter when the recovery discs are made (meaning now that the PC is a few years old). I d appreciate your input.

    KIC

    • Dave Dave says:

      It’s best to make the recovery disks as soon as you get the computer. Unfortunately, you usually only get one chance to make those disks. Since you lost them, you will need to use the recovery partition to restore your computer to factory condition. Good luck. Any problems, join our free forums and ask!

  54. Katerina says:

    I just purchased a Sony SVS15116FXB. I have been unable to create Recovery Discs, even after 2 visits to Sony Customer Care.

    Should I take the computer back to the store I purchased it from???

    It would appear that Sony has a lot of problems in this area.

    • Dave Dave says:

      I would contact Sony and have them send you the disks. They normally charge a small fee but I’m sure you can get them for free based on the circumstances.

  55. Paul says:

    hiya i have read this page mainly because i bought a new sony-vaio s make.believe laptop and thought i know i will delete the main partition and reinstall win7 64 bit from the win7 i bought before i didn’t know about GPT and it is very difficult to get windows to install or even format a GPT drive, after a few tries i decided to recover , i had made recovery discs and a norton ghost recovery , for those who do not have recovery discs , i noticed a lot of downloads thru torrent files for different vaio versions , anyway i booted from the recovery discs when the first menu came up i hit f8 and then used the drive revovery from partition at this point it then boots into windows safe mode , you then do rescue and skip the first part for it to carry on recovery your system from the discs.

  56. Gaurav says:

    I have a Sony Vaio model VPCEA16FG. I have create a recovery disk but my DVD drive is not working so I tried using the Recovery partition to restore the entire system back to factory settings. But during the Windows installation, an error occurs which says “”Windows cannot complete installation”. To install Windows on this computer, restart the installation” and this occurs every time I start the computer. Error 374 and Error 330 is being displayed. I tried running the hardware diagnostics and all other possibilites, but the problem persists. So, I need to know that how can I install windows using a pen drive, if I have recovery disc? Can anybody help me diagnose the problem? Is it possible that the Recovery partition is corrupted?

    • Dave Dave says:

      Not sure if the recovery partition is corrupt or not. One suggestion I have is to unplug all external peripherals and try again. Sometimes an install can hang if it gets stuck looking for drivers. For additional help, please feel free to join our forums and ask.

  57. dbert says:

    Which of the four partitions can I safely delete? I don’t need Sony’s restore-to-original files, I have disk backup/imaging program that can restore may machine. I don’t need all four to keep running windows 7 do I? Can I safely remove all but he last two are all but the last three?

    Factory installed partitions:

    Sonysys 260 MB;
    unnamed 260mb;
    windows hidden reserved 19.12 GB;
    C: 576 GB

  58. pramod ramtekkar says:

    I purchase sony VPCEG35EN having 320gb harddisc it showing near about 286 gb ,

    system having inbuilt window 7 home basic, I make partition E and F 70 gb each,

    and C having near about 145 gb, I feel that C drive take too much partition ,I have to make C drive 80 gb only but ,I am fell to make c drive 80 gb, it shows shrink volume 0 size.
    Pls help me how to make C drive having lower space of 80 GB.

  59. Vijeta says:

    Hi,

    I bought sony e series sve15116fxs now i want to make a recovery disc , what is the size of recovery disc?

    i should use a CD or DVD?

    Thanks!

  60. Ronnie says:

    I purchased my vaio ‘vpceh15en’ almost one year ago…now when I am trying to recover windows from the dvd, after 75%completion it shows ‘error 385′. It is also not showing the option to recover windows from hard disc… HELPPP

  61. David L says:

    my vaio is vpceb32fm i have the restore disks for this 3disks, when i try to do a full restore about 80% i get error 385 is this the hard drive is bad. i see that this probem happens alot since i see it under google. i barely used the laptop and while doing a update to security the battery died then it would not bot up fully. is there a way to fix this i have also gone through step by step with the f functions under restore same thing like the disks and doing it from the functions is the same process and same thing.i like this laptop but not willing to pay alot to get it fixed when i can get a new one for $100 more i want to fully restore to new dont care about anything on it, what kind of options do i have please let me know thanks

  62. Chris says:

    Error 333 SOLVED!

    The solution to the 333 error is this: you will need a hard drive with 512 byte sectors. If the hard drive you’re using has what is now the industry standard 4K sectors, you will get this error. One solution may be to temporarily run the recovery using a compatible hard drive and then transferring that image to the hard drive you want to ultimately be using.

    • Donna says:

      I have the 333 error problem with my Sony Vaio and am having trouble finding a compatible hard drive that is not advanced format. Western Digital has been trying to find one for 5 weeks. Any suggestions?

  63. Noman says:

    Hi

    I have Sony Vio Laptop Windows7 64 bit.
    I have created recovery media….And When i’m trying to recover my Sony Vio using either DVD or System Recovery Image…Its Showing Error..

    what may be problem …can you clear it and give me some Solution..

    Thank You :-)

  64. mubarak haruna says:

    i have a sony vaio flash drive of 1000GB That shows no media when inserted in the usb port of a pc but its detected by the computer but on the verge of opening the message “pliz insert flash drive” appears instead.

  65. E.S. says:

    I have vpceb12fx, which came with a 500GB hd. I purchased the original restore DVD’s from Sony. I am trying to upgrade by HD to 1TB and run the DVD’s. Everytime I do this, i get message that the Microsoft O.S. is not Genuine and cannot be validated. After spending 4 hours of tech support telephone play with Microsoft, they redirected me to Sony. Sony told me following: “The restore Disks are made specifically for this model laptop and this laptop is only upgradable up to a 750gb HD.

    Do Now, I a reinstalled the disks on my 500 GB hd (of course, after a full wipe and format), then I tried to clone the 500 GB to the 1TB, still didn’t work.

    Yes, I used a cracked windows 7 disk and it works perfectly on the 1TB. I don’t want a cracked OS on my machine, I want the original.

    Any suggestions?

  66. carlos andrade says:

    i got a sony vaio and trye to set the laptop on factore settings and i’m getting a error message 332 after 4% of formating process… what is the procedure to get out of the message?

  67. Steve says:

    Carlos I am having the same problem.. I suspect it’s becuase I’m using a 750GB drive instead of the 500GB drive that came with it. Wish there was a work around.

    “got a sony vaio and trye to set the laptop on factore settings and i’m getting a error message 332 after 4% of formating process… what is the procedure to get out of the message?”

  68. Nomi says:

    hellooo everybodyy.. i have a sony laptop, and its model is VPCF1, I m facingg a very serios problemmmm plzzz anybodyy help me out of it…

    I CLICKED ON FACTORY RESTORE DEFAULT SETTINGNS ON MY LAPTOP, WHEN IT STARTS FOR A FACTORY SETTING THEN THE OPERATING SYSTEM boots up displaying windows is loading file den after vaio care rescue error encounters and the error code is 12….

    plzzzzzzzzzzzzzz helppppppp how to get rid of it….

  69. Jimmy says:

    I own a Sony Vaio. I have all my disks, im trying to restore, and when disk one ends at 23%, it tells me to put disk 2 in and continue. I did that and for 2 hours its still been at 23%! HELP!!

  70. Art says:

    Thanks Dave, I was able to do a factory restore of my Vaio and restore all my data.

  71. Saloni says:

    Using the Recovery Partition To Revert my Sony VAIO to Factory Default does not require the recovery cd`s right?.. Because it always shows an error while making the last one .

  72. Glenn says:

    Hi. Do Recovery discs recreate the recovery partition in a vaio svs13 series? Ive managed to wipe my drive.

    • Dave Dave says:

      It’s actually the opposite. The recovery partition makes the disks. You might be able to buy recovery disks from Sony if you have deleted your recovery partition for a small fee.

  73. Varun says:

    Hello sir
    I’d purchased a vaio laptop in 2011 i.e. of e – series(vpceg28fn) model which has a i5 processor and 4 gb ram but one day it was attacked by a virus and malware that try to change my search engine .. so i formatted the ‘C’ drive where windows are installed through vaio recovery partition but the virus named as spigot still there in my laptop and my laptop is quite slow because of it … I am afraid that the virus might get into the recovery partition or is there any way to scan that partition through an antivirus.. and help me please to what to do in getting my laptop in a previously good working condition

  74. Naman says:

    i have sony vaio VPCEH25EN laptop , i want to reinstall my window7(home basic 64-bit), but by mistake i deleted internal recovery files and have created recovery files …..now my laptop is not recovering window due to lost of recovery file…
    can you please help me …about this model

  75. Naman says:

    if you have any solution then please send me link from where i can get recovery files for sony vaio VPCEH25EN model

  76. TiTaN says:

    Hi there. I made some recovery disks for my VAIO VPCEA17FG when I bought it last year, and then I deleted the recovery drive since I thought I wasn’t going to need it anymore and it was taking a lot of space. The problem is that the windows and the VAIO Drivers on the recovery disks are so old and every time I run the recovery, I have to update almost every thing, which takes a lot of time (internet connection speed in Iran is so slow).Also, every time I have to uninstall so many factory-preinstalled programs which I do not need! I downloaded all the necessary updates for the windows and the VAIO yesterday and I removed the unnecessary programs too. Now that I want to create new recovery disks using VAIO Recovery,so that I won’t have to go through the process of downloading updates every time I rune the recovery, I get the message “Cannot find the recovery drive. If you have not removed the recovery drive, restarting the system may correct the issue.” I didn’t know that the recovery Drive is necessary for creating back-up DISKS. What should I do? Can I create a new recovery drive? If yes, will I have to delete my current partiitons in order to create it, or it can be created without having to delete the current partitions? I’d be really thankful if anyone can help me through this.

    • Dave Dave says:

      Look into a program called Paragon Backup and Recovery. They have a free version. You can get your system the way you like it and then image the drive. You can use an external USB drive or repartition your current drive–or it you have a network attached storage device, you can use that. There’s really no reason to use the VAIO system anymore.

  77. Hasan says:

    Dave help me – i bought 3 vaio recovery cds from sony sony vaio vgn ns10e – i replaced before to hitachi 40gb which died when laptop fell so like everyone else on dorum i spent extra few quid n i replaced with brand new hard westetn digital black 750 gb drive intoe- get error 333 at 2 % – is it possible to image to new hd with vaio recovery installed onto old one and use acronis to get new western digital hatd drive with this.

    • Dave Dave says:

      I don’t see why not. If you have an Acronis image of the old drive, you should be able to get it onto the new one. Have your tried it and it doesn’t work? An image is an image and it shouldn’t matter what hard drive it goes onto. You should post your question on our forums. We have several techs that own their own shops and have probably seen this error 333 a lot with Sony Vaio computers.

  78. Abhishek says:

    Hello Sir/Madam,

    I have a sony vaio E-series laptop with i3 processor & OS is window 7 home basic. I purchased it last year in Aug ’12. Now from few days there was some problem creating in my laptop. So i decided to restore my computer to original settings. I tried many times but failed to recover. I repeat the same process for 3-4 days, bt failed again. Now when i start my laptop,, it opened with “Vaio care rescue”. When i do the further process i.e. Start recovery wizard -> Skip rescue,, it shows a error, stating “This recovery media is not for this computer, confirm ur model type” and showing “Error : 212″. When i again restart my computer it again start opening vaio recovery option and by repeating the same process,, it again shows the same “Error : 212″. I have also a recovery discs (4 discs),, i loaded the recovry disc 1 to laptop but nothing is happend.. I m in a great dilemma after looking my laptop to this brutal condition.

    Plzzz,, help me out, how i recover my laptop to its original condition.

    Pls HELP! HELP! HELP!

    Thanks

  79. arman says:

    recovery disc is garbage,, i have all original on my loptop but when i try to restore in factory setting error 332… hrrrrr

  80. sing lee says:

    My sony vaio vpcsb190x fails to boot up. Called Sony for recovery disks which cost $39. After reading in all 6 disks, the installation begun but hangs at “Installing USB 3.0 Driver (NEC)…” It ran on windows 7 home premium 64bit. Please advise.

  81. seshadri iyer says:

    I lost the recovery disks. Where can I download the recovery disks for vaio vpcea16fg? thanks.

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