How Do You Perform a Factory Reset in Windows 7?

Use the installation disc or the recovery partition to perform a factory reset in Windows 7. You need a Windows 7 computer with an installation CD or a built-in recovery partition to begin.

  1. Back up your data

    Use a USB flash drive to back up all your important data from your computer. You can also upload your files to Dropbox or a similar cloud storage service.

  2. Insert the installation disc

    Open the disc drive, and insert the installation disc. Close the disc tray, and close any pop-up windows requesting to open or play the CD. If your computer has a built-in recovery partition, access the recovery folder within the All Programs list in the Start menu. Open the recovery management software, and follow the on-screen guide to reset your computer to factory defaults.

  3. Reboot the computer

    Restart the computer after inserting the disc. During the reboot, press any key to boot from the CD. If you see the Windows logo, restart the computer, and continuously press a key to boot from the CD.

  4. Reset Windows 7

    Select System Restore from the disc options to reinstall Windows 7 on your computer. Select the primary partition for the installation, and follow the on-screen prompts to reformat the drive and reinstall Windows 7.