Welcome to Wildcard IT Training.
This workshop is titled “Restoring Windows 10".
The objectives of this workshop are listed on the right.
Press the 'Continue' button below to begin.
When Windows 10 was introduced in 2015, Microsoft offered all non-enterprise users of Windows 7 and Windows 8 (including 8.1) a free upgrade to Windows 10.
This was excellent news but came with a few caveats. Firstly, and rightly so, this would only apply to genuine copies of the previously mentioned Windows versions.
This upgrade would come in the form of a Windows Update that would be pushed out with other standard security and feature updated, but could also be downloaded manually.
This free upgrade option included any newly purchased PC, laptop or tablet that came with the qualifying Windows versions. However, most importantly, this free upgrade option only lasted until June 2016. From this date, all new installations of Windows 10 would need to be licensed appropriately.
In this workshop, we will learn how to reset a Windows 10 installation back to default and see how we can choose to keep or remove personal files.
To begin, press the Start button, located in the lower left of the screen.
This opens the new Start menu, restored to Windows 10 from the full screen version that Windows 8 and 8.1 gave us.
Select the ‘Settings’ icon on the Start menu.
The Settings screen is a new addition to Windows 10 and allows us to perform advanced customizations to our device, including account changes, personalization and system settings.
We want to perform a recovery so select ‘Update & Security’.
The Update & Security section of the Settings area allows us to change Windows Update settings, ensure our Windows 10 installation is protected with Windows Defender settings and perform a backup amongst other things.
We wish to perform a recovery, so select the ‘Recovery’ option on the left of the screen.
Resting a PC can be hugely useful in a couple of scenarios.
Firstly, if there have been some undesirable configuration changes that we either cannot undo or do not have the required expertise, resetting the PC back to default is often the best option.
Similarly, over time we may install, remove and upgrade applications that may leave files installed that we do not need. A reset can remove this and ensure Windows 10 runs well again.
Finally, if we were selling this PC it is necessary, as a minimum, to clean Windows 10 to make sure there are no personal files left on the computer. However, it could be argued that any computer that has had important personal files on it should have the hard drive destroyed.
Let’s reset this PC. Underneath the ‘Reset this PC’ section, press ‘Get Started’.
We are presented with two options.
We can choose to ‘Keep my files’. Selecting this option will remove all applications but keep our personal files. This is probably the best option to select if we just want to improve the performance of Windows 10 and are keeping the PC.
Our other option is to ‘Remove everything’. This option performs a complete reset of everything including applications, settings and our personal files. We must ensure we have backed up our files as well as our configuration settings that we require.
Let’s select ‘Remove everything’.
We are now presented with two options that based on whether we are keeping the PC or not.
We can just remove the files which means the files cannot be accessed without special software designed for hardware recovery. These files will eventually be overwritten over time as space is required.
Otherwise, we can select ‘Remove files and clean the drive’. This essentially overwrites the blocks on the disk that these files reside on immediately, making the files significantly harder (but not impossible) to recover.
Select the ‘Just remove my files’ option.
We are given a confirmation of what we have requested.
Resetting this Windows 10 installation will remove all personal files and user accounts on this PC, any applications that did not come with the PC will be removed and all settings will be reverted to default.
The computer is now restarting and may take some time to reset the installation of Windows 10.
In this workshop we have learned how to reset Windows 10 to the default settings and explored the various options we can select based on whether settings and personal files are to be kept.
This completes this workshop. You may find more workshops in the Windows 10 series useful. Scroll down to view the available and recommended workshops.
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Restore Windows 10
Reset Windows 10 to default settings