Is your computer prolonged? Or worse, not responding? In those times of stress, you may think that their life is over, but don’t give up just yet. You have come to the right place. Before you ditch your PC and spend on a new one, there’s one last trick that can save you time and money: learn how to restore factory windows and get your PC back to normal.
Before restarting your system, you will want to make a backup copy of important information you do not want to lose. This includes documents, photos, music, and movies, although there are other items to back up as well.
Ensure you have all your passwords saved, export all your browser bookmarks, and have installation files for all the software you want to reinstall (or at least know where you can get them again).
Also, be sure to back up application-specific data, such as custom filters saved in a photo utility, as well as save files from your favorite games. Oh, and don’t forget to back up your emails, either.
The Windows 10 restart feature is found in the main Settings menu. This feature returned the Windows 10 installation to the default state when Windows 10 was first installed. Please note that this could be technically different from a “factory reset,” depending on the manufacturer of your machine.
Check the documentation or call technical support if you want your PC to be like the first time you took it out of the box. The manufacturer may have unique partitions configured on your hard drive or provide you with a factory reset guide.
Access the setup menu by clicking the icon Notifications on the taskbar or by pressing the Windows + A. Then click All Settings.
Click Update & Security, then choose Recovery from the menu on the left.
The next page contains two options. First, Reset this PC is the method we’re going to go with, but the second option is also worth considering if you have a little more technical skill.
The Advanced Home is used to modify your computer at a deeper level or install a completely different operating system. This is useful if your manufacturer provides a restore factory windows image or an external disk containing the image to return your machine to its factory state.
Unless you are entirely sure you understand what each of the options in this configuration does, it is probably best to leave it alone.
When you’re ready, click the Get started button under the Reset this PC heading. A new window will appear with two options: Keep my files and Delete all.
Decide if you want to keep all your files and folders, or really start from scratch and then recover your data from where you have backed it up before. Whatever you choose, all of your apps will need to be reinstalled, and your settings, like your Start menu, will revert to default.
Click on the option that suits you best. If you choose to keep my files, go to Step 7.
If you choose Delete All, the system will delete your files instead of cleaning the drive; that’s the best option if you are giving away the PC or selling it.
You can click on “Change settings” if you want to change them. You can choose to delete your files instead of cleaning the drive and delete all files from the Windows drive only or all drives.
If your computer has multiple internal drives, you will also have the option to erase just the primary purpose (the one with Windows) or all connected drives. Click Show me the list of all files and drives that will be affected to find out precisely what will be included in the reboot process.
If you chose to keep my files, the system would show a list of conventional programs installed on your computer (those not installed in the Windows Store). This list will be saved to your desktop when the recovery process is complete. Click Next.
Once you have followed the steps to prepare for the “reset,” you will be presented with the final option. Click Reset to continue.
Your PC will automatically restart and begin the restart process (restore factory windows). This can take an hour or more, so if you’re using a laptop, it’s a good idea to plug in the charging cable. It can be restarted multiple times. Wait for Windows to continue and begin the setup process, enter your personal information, and log in.
Once you’ve confirmed that everything works, make sure to update all your essential drivers and install good antivirus software to stay protected.
Windows 7 does not have the built-in update and reset options found in newer versions. Users with these operating systems have two options when they want to perform a factory reset.
The first is to reinstall Windows from scratch, which is not a proper restore factory windows unless you have all the original installation media available.
Note: Microsoft will stop supporting Windows 7 in January 2020. Please move to Windows 10 when this happens, as Windows 7 will stop receiving important security updates by the end of the first month of 2020, and there will be plenty of vulnerable. You can even get windows 10 for free if you want.
Step 1: Open Recover by doing a Windows search.
Step 2: Select Advanced Recovery Options.
Step 3: Click Reinstall Windows.
Your second option is to use a recovery tool provided by the manufacturer. These are the common names for recovery software from each of the major PC manufacturers. Entering it into the Windows desktop search tool can help you find them.
Acer: Acer eRecovery or Acer Recovery Management.
Asus: Asus Recovery Partition or AI Recovery.
Dell: Dell Factory Image Restore, DataSafe, Dell Backup & Recovery, and various other names.
HP: HP System Recovery or Recovery Manager.
Lenovo: Rescue and Recovery or ThinkVantage Recovery (on ThinkPads).
You can also access recovery from outside of Windows, which is useful if you can’t find the software or if Windows won’t load.
To do this, restart your computer and pay close attention to the startup screen that appears before Windows loads. Be on the lookout for a hotkey that will take you to the recovery interface. In most cases, the key will be F11.
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