How to Reset Windows 11 to Factory Settings?

Resetting Windows 11 PC is a great idea to troubleshoot some tricky problems or to prepare your PC for selling. This post provides 2 ways to reset Windows 11 respectively in different situations and teaches you how to back up your important files before resetting.

Hedy

By Hedy / Updated on June 6, 2024

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Why need to reset Windows 11 PC?

Usually, you may want to reset Windows 11 in two circumstances.

The first situation is when your Windows 11 PC has some noticeable performance problems. You have tried all available fixes but still can't repair the PC. In such a case, a factory reset is a potential solution to Windows recovery. Resetting Windows 11 will bring the PC back to its factory state, possibly fixing any issues.

The second situation is when you want to give or sell your Windows 11 computer to others. Apart from wiping hard drive clean, the factory reset is also a good way to erase all changes since the Windows PC left the factory, protecting your personal data from being leaked and stolen.

What to do before resetting Windows 11?

Since factory resetting a computer will delete everything on the system partition of Windows 11, you should think twice before you proceed. The top consideration is to back up important files in advance to keep the data safe. If anything goes wrong with the factory reset Windows 11 PC, you can restore your PC to its pre-reset state from the backup.

To back up files, AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional is strongly recommended. It is a powerful backup tool that can help back up the operating system, programs, applications, files, folders, and anything you don't want to lose by cloning the disk at one time. Moreover, if you can't boot into your computer, you can use AOMEI software to clone hard drive with a bootable USB drive.

Now, you can follow the step-by-step guide to clone your data to an external hard drive before starting to reset Windows 11 to factory.

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Step 1. Connect the new hard drive to your computer. Install and open AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional. Click "Clone" in the main interface, and select "Clone Disk".

clone-disk

Step 2. Choose the hard disk that you need to clone as the source disk and click "Next".

select-source-disk

Step 3. Select another drive as the destination disk, and then click "Next".

select-destination-disk

Step 4. Then, you can check the source and destination disk in the next window or change to "Sector to Sector clone", and click the "Confirm" button to continue if there is no problem.

confirm

Here, you can also click the "Settings" button to adjust the partition size on the destination disk or tick "4k alignment" to improve the reading and writing speed of the SSD. 

edit-disk

Step 5. After returning to the main interface, check the pending operation and click "Apply" and "Proceed" to commit the operation.

apply

How to factory reset Windows 11?

Once you have backed up your important files, you can read this part to reset PC Windows 11. There are two situations: You can boot your Windows 11 PC or you can’t. Scroll down to the part that meets your actual situation and learn how to factory reset Windows 11 step by step.

Situation 1. Your Windows 11 PC can boot normally

If you can boot into your computer normally, you can use the reset option within Windows to reset Windows 11 PC.

Step 1. Navigate to the reset feature by:

1. Press the window + I keys together to open Windows settings and click System > Recovery > Reset PC.
2. Force the PC to shut down 2 times and reboot it to enter the Windows Recovery Environment, then click Troubleshoot > Reset this PC.

Step 2. When you see this window, you can choose Keep my files option or Remove everything option according to your needs.

remove-everything

Step 3. Then, choose a way to reinstall your Windows 11 after resetting.

local-install

Step 4. Next, you need to decide to just remove your files or fully clean the drive.

clean-the-drive

Step 4. You will be asked if you are ready to reset your device. If you have no questions about the impacts listed in front of you, click on "Reset" to start the process of factory reset Windows 11 PC.

click-on-reset

▌ Situation 2. Your Windows 11 PC cannot boot normally

If your Windows 11 PC fails to boot as usual, the steps to reset Windows 11 to factory may be a little troublesome, but the operation is still feasible. The solution is to factory reset your PC with a bootable USB flash drive, the steps are as follows:

Step 1. Create a Windows 11 media creation tool on a running computer.

Step 2. Insert this Windows 11 bootable USB drive to the problematic PC you want to reset to factory settings. Restart the PC, enter into the BIOS menu, and boot from the USB.

boot-from-usb-drive

Step 3. After the PC boots up, you will get into the Windows Setup window, set the parameters, and click "Next".

Step 4. On the next page, click "Install Now".

install-now

Step 5. On the Activate Windows page, click "I don't have a product key". Select Windows 11 edition and accept the Microsoft software license.

Step 6. When selecting which type of installation you want. You need to choose Custom: Install Windows only (advanced).

custom-install

Step 7. Select the drive partition where you want to install Windows 11, and click "Next". After installation, your Windows 11 PC will restore to a brand-new state, just like when it has performed a factory reset.

Conclusion

This article has demonstrated 2 ways to reset Windows 11 PC in two different situations, you can employ them based on your need. Since the factory reset will delete all information on your Windows 11, it's highly suggested to back up your important files. From this passage, you know how make a copy of your data by cloning the hard drive via AOMEI Partition Assistant.

In addition, you can also use this software to perform many operations to optimize your computer such as creating/resizing/moving/deleting partitions in Windows 11, removing junk files or large files, moving files to another drive, etc.

Hedy
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.