Had everything backed up so starting squeaky clean was easy.
You know, about 3 or 4 years ago I started pretty much living out of external hard drives and Dropbox. All important data or files lives in one of those places. iTunes library, points to an external drive. Music writing software, saving location points to Dropbox.
The point is that I routinely do a clean install of my workstation at work, maybe every 9mos or 1 year. It is painless! I barely have to give the machine a quick going-over for important data before I wipe it, because it all lives off the machine. I'm usually up and running again in about 45 minutes... 10-12 for Win7 install, then another 30 or so for Office and other apps.
I did everyone important in my life (that would listen!) the same way. Any one of my PC's could burn right now, and I absolutely wouldn't have a single worry or regret.
So my hat's off to you Mitchell, maybe a lot of folks here ARE using good backup methods, but in my experience in life outside of these forums, most do not, until it's too late.