How to Factory Reset Microsoft Surface [3 Simple Ways]

Mastering the art of resetting your Microsoft Surface Laptop is crucial to quickly resolving the problem if something goes wrong. This comprehensive guide will show you how to factory reset Microsoft Surface in different ways.


By Hedy / Updated on January 26, 2024

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Similar to any other laptop, encountering errors on your Microsoft Surface Pro, Go or Book laptop is a common scenario. Initial remediation usually involves troubleshooting to identify and resolve the root cause of the error. If traditional solutions prove ineffective, the final solution is to perform a factory reset on your device. Are you familiar with the process of factory resetting your Microsoft Surface laptop?

If you find yourself thinking about the same question, this informative article will provide the solution you are looking for. In these, you will find three different methods to perform a factory reset on a malfunctioning Microsoft Surface Pro. To ensure the integrity of your files, we will also encourage you to back up your important data by cloning the hard drive.

How to factory reset Microsoft Surface - 3 ways

After trying all troubleshooting attempts without success, the final step to correct your Microsoft Surface Laptop issues is to perform a factory reset. This method requires wiping all data and settings on the device and restoring it to its original default settings.

In the next sections, we'll delve into three different methods of factory reset.

Way 1. Reset Surface to factory settings in Windows Settings

One of the most straightforward methods for initiating a factory reset on your Surface involves accessing the main settings of your device. The steps for Windows 11 and Windows 10 differ and are outlined below.

On Windows 11:

Step 1. Press the Windows logo key + I to open Settings.

Step 2. Navigate to "System" > "Recovery" and select "Recovery options".

Step 3. Go to the "Reset this PC" section and click "Reset PC" to commence the reset process for your Microsoft Surface Pro laptop.


Step 4. Choose between "Keep my files" or "Remove everything" and follow the onscreen instructions. Additionally, decide whether to perform a Cloud download or Local reinstall for your operating system.

On Windows 10:

Step 1. Move to the bottom left corner of your screen, click the Start button, and then access "Settings".

Step 2. Under Settings, click "Update & Security", then go to the "Recovery" tab. In the "Reset this PC" section, click "Get started" to initiate the reset process.

Step 3. In the subsequent window, select "Keep my files" or "Remove everything" and follow the onscreen instructions.


Step 4. Decide whether to reinstall your Microsoft Surface OS via Cloud download or Local reinstall based on your preference. The system will then execute a factory reset on your laptop, restoring it to its default state for a fresh start.


Way 2. Reset Surface to factory settings in Windows Recovery Environment

In situations where your Microsoft Surface is having difficulty booting via traditional methods, implementing the steps outlined in Method 1 can become challenging. Another method is to access the Windows recovery environment to perform a factory reset. In this order:

Step 1. Power on your Microsoft Surface Laptop and initiate a restart when the Surface logo appears. Repeat this process 3 times to prompt the system to enter "Automatic Repair".

Step 2. Once your device enters automatic repair, navigate to Advanced options > Troubleshoot and select Reset this PC. This action will start the factory reset process of your device.


Step 3. You will be prompted to choose between keeping the files or deleting all contents. Select your preferred option and follow the on-screen instructions.

Step 4. In the subsequent window, select Cloud Download or Local Install to reinstall Windows. Continue to follow the instructions provided to complete the factory reset process.

Way 3. Reset Surface to factory settings using a USB Drive

To reset your Surface using a USB drive, you have two options: 1) use a Surface recovery image, 2) use a recovery drive. In this guide, we’ll focus on how to restore your device to default settings using a Microsoft Surface recovery image. Before you begin, make sure you visit the Microsoft website to download the recovery image and have a USB drive with a capacity of at least 16 GB and formatted with FAT32.

In this order:

Step 1. Visit the Microsoft website to download a recovery image specific to Surface Pro/Go/Book.

Step 2. Under the "Select your Surface" window, enter your product name and serial number. Click Continue.


Step 3. Download the recovery image to your laptop and extract the contents of the ZIP file to your USB hard drive.


Step 4. Power off your Microsoft Surface, connect the USB drive, then hold down the Volume Down button while pressing the Power button. When the Surface logo appears, release the Volume Down button to enter the Windows recovery environment.

Step 5. Select your language and preferred keyboard layout.

Step 6. Navigate to the Choose an option screen, click Troubleshoot, and then select Reset this PC. Follow the on-screen instructions to begin the factory reset process to restore your device to its default settings.

How to factory reset Microsoft Surface without password [Extra Tip]

The above information provides in-depth information on how to perform a factory reset on a gateway laptop running Windows 10 without a password. However, for some users, a factory reset is required due to the unfortunate circumstance of forgetting their password.

If you find yourself stuck in this predicament, there's a possible solution that doesn't require logging in. AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional is a comprehensive disk and partition software with a "reset password" function, specially designed to solve the problem of users who forget local files. password. The process involves creating a password reset USB on a separate computer and then applying it to the target PC, effectively resolving password-related issues. In addition, AOMEI Partition Assistant also provides a server version specially designed for Windows Server users.

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Note: Please ensure the USB is empty as the operation will erase its data.

Stage 1: Create Windows Password Reset USB for Microsoft Surface Laptop

Step 1. Connect an empty USB to any functional computer. Install and launch AOMEI Partition Assistant. In the taskbar, click on "Tools" and then select "Reset Windows Password".


Step 2. In the pop-up window, you'll be prompted to create a media. Click "Next" to proceed.

Step 3. Select "USB Boot Device," pick your prepared USB for the bootable USB creation, and click "Proceed".


Step 4. Note that the USB flash drive must be formatted, and all data on it will be wiped. Ensure you have backed up any essential data, as it will be erased during this process.


Stage 2: Remove/Reset Password on Microsoft Surface Laptop

Step 1. Boot the computer from the bootable USB, and AOMEI Partition Assistant will appear on the screen. Click "Reset Password," choose the Windows system you want to modify, and click "Next."


Step 2. Select the account you wish to modify, opt for either "Remove Account Password" or "Reset Account Password," and click "Next."


Now, you can reboot your Microsoft Surface laptop normally and use the new password to log in. No data loss will occur on your laptop during this process.


This guide provides you with insights on how to factory reset your Microsoft Surface Laptop. To recap, the methods discussed include resetting through Windows Settings, entering the Windows Recovery Environment, and performing a Surface reset using a USB drive. Feel free to try each method to determine which one best suits your needs.

If you need to reset your computer because you forgot your password, AOMEI Partition Assistant provides a solution to ensure password recovery without data loss.

Additionally, this versatile tool comes with a host of additional features including MBR/GPT data secure conversion, application migration, disk speed test, apps moving, and more. It is a comprehensive solution for various disk and partition management tasks.

Hedy · Staff Editor
Hedy is an editor of AOMEI Technology. She is very good at solving problems of partition management, and she wants to share all the problems she had already solved to users who met the same questions.