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Windows 10: How Does Reset Work?

Wednesday, December 9th, 2015 by | Filed Under: Windows 10

Adam has a question about Windows 10:  “I had Windows 8.1 on my computer, but now I upgraded to Windows 10. When I need to refresh or reset my computer and it reinstalls windows, which version will I get, 8.1 or 10? I believe 10, right?”

You’ll reset to Windows 10.

The  reset function of Windows 10 is a really neat feature of the operating system. If your PC is slow or having some kind of strange glitch, this just might take care of it. Let’s take a look at how it works.  Go to settings and select Update & Security. Then choose Recovery options.  Then choose Reset this PC.


You can then choose whether or not you want to keep your files and then reinstall windows. Even if you do choose to keep your files, you’ll lose your settings and your apps. That means you’ll have to reset any custom settings and also reinstall any apps.


It’s also a great way to get around bloatware that is sometimes installed on PCs to subsidize the cost.

So if you buy a new PC and bring it home, before you transfer any of your files from your old PC to it, you can do a reset to restore it to the factory version of Windows 10. Any additional add-ons or trial programs will be gone. But you’ll want to do this before you add any new files or programs.

If you’ve upgraded to Windows 10,   you do have the option of going back to your previous version of Windows for the first 30 days after installation.

~ Cynthia

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8 Responses to “Windows 10: How Does Reset Work?”

  1. Jadesqr says:

    Hey Cynthia, Great tip to do a ‘Recovery’ on a new Windows 10 machine to remove bloatware, this is going to the top of my ‘#1 Windows 10-Guide’ appendix.

  2. tim says:

    Great !! tip.

  3. […] If that doesn’t help, you could try refreshing Windows. But you’d have to make sure you had your files backed up first. […]

  4. Bill says:

    I installed Windows 10, and didn’t like the looks of it, reverted to 7, and my entire mail link was totally scrambled on my computer, lost a lot of old emails i had saved. Then, some weeks later went back to 10 to try and recover emails, but couldn’t. So back to 7, not a good experience trying 10. Any ideas on how to recover the lost emails going back years? Thanks for your help, i enjoy your site…….Bill

  5. Richard says:

    Cynthia Why can’t Black be Black & White Be White . Refresh all of a sudden is Reset or Update becomes Upgrade , that’s like saying an egg and an egg plant are the same thing . From your article of 6-15-2016 I really expected better and more from you . Missing the real Cynthia Richie Grunza

    • cynthia says:

      In this case, the upgrade to Windows 10 does come in the form of an update. Refresh is what Windows 10 calls resetting. But it is actually a factory reset.

  6. Windows 10 Sucks says:

    “Windows 10: How Does Reset Work?”

    Oh, well – that’s very simple…..

    It DOESN’T.

    Seriously, this hardly EVER works. I do this for a living, and I can probably count on one hand the number of times this has actually completed without an error. What a USELESS “feature.” Either with or without user data, it HARDLY. EVER. WORKS.

    It’s hard to understand how Microsoft created a “feature” which should ostensibly be so straightforward and simple in function, and got it to FAIL 90% OF THE TIME.

    Anyway, thanx for letting me vent.

    • cynthia says:

      I must say, that I do this for a living as well, and I’ve seen a lot of folks have great success with it. In fact, a friend sent me a case of Coca-Cola today to thank me for suggesting it and walking her through the process. I’ve never had an experience of it failing. BUT… every computer is different, and tech works in mysterious way, so I know it could have gone completely the other way for you.

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