I really would like to try this but dont know where to start, don't even no the name of such a procedure so can't search for it.

Basically, can I install fresh windows, then tweak and install programs etc, create an image of that install to DVD and then be able to use that image to very quickly restore my machine to perfect personalized settings?

Its such a simple but brilliant idea i dont know why it isnt talked about more

The worst thing about formatting is having to setup all your programs and settings, but this method completely eliminates that. And streamlining is nowhere near as good as you still need to tweak and it takes longer.