Lost your Windows discs?
Here's a link to an excellent blog article written by Ed Bott, for the Ed Bott Report, on ZDNet.
Lost your Windows discs? How to get replacement media, legally
Did your most recent Windows PC purchase come with a set of reinstallation media?
Maybe it did, maybe it didn't. As I noted in my coverage of Microsoft's lawsuit against UK retail giant Comet, big PC makers—the so-called royalty OEMs—are required to include a recovery solution as part of their installation of Windows. But the details of those recovery systems vary by manufacturer, so there's no one-size-fits-all set of instructions.