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How to factory reset Windows 11 removing everything


  • To factory reset Windows 11, open Settings > System > Recovery.
  • Then click the “Reset PC” button and select the “Remove everything” option.
  • Select the “Local reinstall” or “Cloud download” options, and click the “Next” and “Reset” buttons.

You can use the “Reset this PC” feature to wipe out the hard drive and reinstall Windows 11 22H2 or version 21H2 if you plan to decommission the computer, the device is not working correctly, you want to speed up the system, or to fix the battery and app problems.

On Windows 11, the “Reset this PC” feature allows you to quickly reset a computer to the factory settings using the local files or downloading a fresh copy of the operating system from the cloud, ensuring your settings, files, and applications get erased beyond recovery.

This guide will teach you the steps to use the “Reset this PC” feature to reinstall Windows 11 without keeping your files after an upgrade if the device is having problems or you are dealing with apps or system configuration issues.

Factory reset Windows 11 with local reinstall

To factory reset Windows 11 (erasing everything), use these steps:

  1. Open Settings on Windows 11.

  2. Click on System.

  3. Click the Recovery tab.

    Windows 11 recovery

  4. Under the “Recovery options” section, click the Reset PC button in the “Reset this PC” setting.

    Reset This PC

  5. Click the Remove Everything option.

    Reset this PC remove everything

  6. Select the “Local reinstall” option to use the local image to reinstall Windows 11, removing everything on the computer.

    Windows 11 local reinstall

  7. Click the Next button.

  8. Click the Reset button.

    Windows 11 reset

Once you complete the steps, the feature will reset Windows 11 using the locally available image, erasing everything on the hard drive, including files, settings, and apps.

Factory reset Windows 11 with cloud download

To reset your Windows 11 computer with the “cloud download” option without keeping your files, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings.

  2. Click on System.

  3. Click the Recovery tab.

    Windows 11 recovery

  4. Under the “Recovery options” section, click the Reset PC button in the “Reset this PC” setting.

    Reset This PC

  5. Click the “Remove everything” option.

    Reset this PC remove everything

  6. Select the “Cloud download” option to download a fresh copy of Windows 11.

    Cloud download

  7. (Optional) Click the Change settings option if you plan to give away or sell the device.

    Reset This PC change settings

  8. Turn on the Clean data toggle switch to securely erase all the drives. (This could take a long time.)

    Reset This PC clean data

  9. Click the Confirm button.

  10. Click the Next button.

  11. Click the Reset button.

    Reset this PC remove everything

After you complete the steps, a fresh image of the same version of Windows 11 installed on your computer will download and be used to reset the device, removing everything on the hard drive.

Factory reset Windows 11 from boot (BIOS)

To reset Windows 11 from boot using local reinstall or cloud download, use these steps:

  1. Start computer.

  2. Immediately after the Power-On Self-Test (POST), press the Power button again to shut down.

  3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 twice, and in the third restart, the operating system should enter the Windows Recovery Environment (Windows RE).

    Quick note: Windows 11 includes multiple ways to open the Advanced startup settings. If you cannot access the recovery environment, try these other options.
  4. Click the Advanced options button.

  5. Click on Troubleshoot.

    Troubleshoot option

  6. Click the “Reset this PC” option.

    Reset Windows 11 from boot

  7. Select the “Remove everything” option to wipe out the hard drive and reinstall a fresh copy of Windows 11.

    Advanced startup remove everything

  8. Click the “Just remove my files” option if you plan to keep the device. Or select the “Fully clean the drive” option if you plan to get rid of the device.

    Advanced startup clean drive option

  9. Select the “Cloud download” option to re-download Windows 11 instead of using the available image. (If you prefer to use the local image, select the “Local reinstall” option.)

    Cloud download and Local reinstall options

  10. Click the Reset button.

Once you complete the steps, the feature will reset the computer to default settings by removing everything and reinstalling a fresh copy of Windows 11. If you select the “Cloud download” option, the system will download the image that has the same version of Windows 11 already installed on the computer. This isn’t an option to upgrade to a newer version.

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All content on this site is provided with no warranties, express or implied. Use any information at your own risk. Always backup of your device and files before making any changes. Privacy policy info.



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