Windows is prone to all sorts of issues, from the sudden disappearance of files to problems with installing updates. If your computer isn't running the way it should, giving you strange errors or performing extremely slowly, Windows 10 makes it easy to start over. The operating system provides a number of options that let you restore your computer to an earlier state.
Factory resetting a Windows 10 machine can be a good way of troubleshooting problems you may have with your PC. If there is a problematic driver or software bug, resetting the machine can often clear this up without having to pay out for repairs and its associated stresses.
Factory resetting your Windows 10 machine will delete settings and personalisations including things like your bookmarks, saved games, downloaded files, documents and photos. You should take some time to back up anything that you wish to keep.
Here is how to factory reset your Windows 10 PC
- Click the Start Menu and then the Settings cog.
- Select "Update & security"
- Click Recovery in the left pane.
- Click Get started under Reset this PC.
- Click either "Keep my files" or "Remove everything," depending on whether you want to keep your data files intact. Either way, all of your settings will return to their defaults and apps will be uninstalled.
- Select "Just remove my files" or "Remove files and clean the drive" if you chose to "remove everything" in the prior step. Cleaning the drive takes a lot longer but will make sure that, if you are giving the computer away, the next person will have a hard time recovering your erased files. If you are keeping the computer, choose "Just remove my files."
- Click Next if Windows warns you that you won't be able to roll back to a prior version of the OS.
- Click Reset when prompted.
- Windows will then restart and take several minutes to reset itself.
- Click Continue when prompted.
Windows presents you with three major options: Reset this PC, Go back to an earlier build and Advanced startup.
Reset this PC is the best option for starting fresh.
Advanced startup lets you boot off a recovery USB drive or disc.
"Go to an earlier build" is made for Windows Insiders who want to roll back to a previous version of the OS.
Your Windows 10 machine will now be returned to its original factory settings. You can now go ahead and reinstall your applications and restore your documents and files.