How to Factory Reset Windows 11

How to Factory Reset Windows 11

If you’re having problems with your Windows 11 PC or want to sell it, you may want to perform a factory reset.

This process is entirely safe and will restore your computer to its original state. This includes resetting all PC settings and deleting user data. Your PC will seem brand new again.

Important: make sure you backup your computer and any data before factory resetting.

Follow these steps to factory reset Windows 11:

  1. Go to the Start Menu and type reset this pc

    Search for "reset this pc" in the menu bar
    Search for “reset this pc” in the menu bar

  2. Click on the Reset this PC option

    Choose the "Reset this PC" option
    Choose the “Reset this PC” option

  3. In the next window, select Reset PC

    Press on the "Reset PC" button
    Press on the “Reset PC” button

  4. After you press the “Reset PC” button, two choices will appear, Keep my files and Remove everything.
    Choose whether you want to keep your files or to remove all of them
    Choose whether you want to keep your files or to remove all of them

    If you select Keep my files, Windows will reset itself to its original configuration, removing any applications or settings you’ve installed but retaining your data. If you want to solve an error on your PC, it’s recommended to select this option.

    If you select Remove everything, Windows deletes all your data and settings. If you want to sell your PC, this option is more suitable.

  5. After selecting either option, two options appear in the next window: Cloud download and Local reinstall.
    Choose one of the two options, Cloud download or Local reinstall
    Choose one of the two options, Cloud download or Local reinstall

    Cloud download: Windows will download new systems files from Microsoft’s services. This option is recommended when your PC’s system files are damaged. However, the size of cloud download may exceed 4GB, so if you have a weak internet connection or limited data plan, this option might not be suitable.

    Local reinstall: Windows will use your existing system files to reinstall Windows. Windows will verify the files you already have downloaded and then reassemble them into a new Windows system.

  6. After choosing one of the options above, click on Next in the following window.
    Press the "Next" button
    Press the “Next” button
  7. In the final window, we recommend reading the summary of the changes that will occur to your PC. After confirming, press the Reset button.

    Press the "Reset" button
    Press the “Reset” button

This process can take a while, so be patient. After the reset is complete, your PC will restart. The original computer setup, which you went through when you first bought your PC, will begin in the startup.

Erik is a full-time product quality engineer at the IBM who has a passion for teaching others (and always learning) about technology. He has a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science and Engineering from Eindhoven University of Technology. Erik is the chief editor for Windows, Linux and coding tutorials.

Leave a Comment