How to Factory Reset Windows 10

How to Factory Reset Windows 10
Photo : geralt on Pixabay

If you are searching for how to factory reset Windows 10 because you are having issues with your PC or in the process of selling it, then check out this guide.

How to reset from within Windows 10

First, make sure that your PC is plugged in. Once you are logged into your Windows PC, you need to access your Windows Recovery tool. You can open the Windows Recovery tool by pressing the Windows key and typing "reset" on the search bar. Select "Reset this PC" then "Get Started" to get the recovery process started.

Alternatively, you can press and hold the Windows Key + X and select Settings. Then chose Update and Security before selecting the Recovery option, which is locate on the left side navigation bar. Once the Recovery tool appears, select "Reset this PC," and then "Get Started."

A new window will appear; then you need to select between "Keep my files" and "Remove everything." If you want to refresh your PC, select "Keep my files," but if you want to reset the PC fully, "Remove everything." 

Choosing to "Keep my files" will restore the factory-installed apps and the settings. However, you can choose the option "Change Settings," then toggle "Preinstalled apps" off. This way, the apps and settings will not be restored.

If you opted to "Remove everything," you will need to confirm by selecting either "Just remove my files" or "Remove file and a clean drive." If you select "Just remove my files," the process will take much faster. If you want to fix issues with your PC, then this the safest route.

However, if you are selling your computer or passing it on to someone else, it is better to "Remove everything" to ensure that your personal data will not in any way be recovered. This process will take a longer time to complete.

You should then see a new window - "Ready to reset this PC." If you previously selected "Keep my files, you will be prompted to select which apps you want to replace; otherwise, just click the "Reset" to get things started.

If you are asked for a recovery key, you can check it by signing in to your Microsoft account.

Can't log into your PC? Do this instead

If you can't log into your PC to factory reset it for some reason, then follow these steps.

1. Use the Advanced startup tool. You can do this using one of  two ways. First, by pressing the on-screen power button while holding the Shift key, if you are already in the Windows log-in screen. Then press the restart button. Once it reboots, it should bring up the Advanced startup tool.

Another way to do it is by power-cycling your PC. Press and hold the power button until it fully boots. Do this three times. Then on the last startup, your PC should bring you to the Advanced startup tool window.

2. Use the Reset tool. From the Advanced startup tool, select Troubleshoot, then Reset this PC.

3. To get the resetting process started, select "Remove everything," or "Keep my files." 

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