Mastering the Reboot: A Comprehensive Guide to Factory Reset Windows 10 from BIOS


A. Definition of factory reset

A factory reset, also known as a hard reset or master reset, is the process of restoring a device's to its original, default state by erasing all data and settings. This can help resolve issues such as slow performance, software errors, or malware infections.

B. Importance of factory reset in Windows 10

Factory resetting 10 can be beneficial in many situations, such as when the operating system becomes unstable, cluttered, or compromised by malware. A factory reset can help restore the PC to its original state, thereby improving performance and security.

C. Circumstances that require factory reset

Some common circumstances that may require a factory reset in Windows 10 include:
– Persistent errors or crashes
– Poor performance due to accumulated system clutter
– Malware infections that cannot be removed by antivirus software
– Preparing the device for selling or donating
– Corrupted system files that cannot be repaired

Understanding BIOS

A. Definition and function of BIOS

BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) is a firmware that initializes the hardware components during the device's boot process. It is responsible for managing tasks such as POST (Power-On Self Test), loading the operating system, and providing a basic interface between the hardware and software.

B. Role of BIOS in factory resetting Windows 10

BIOS plays a crucial role in factory resetting Windows 10, as it allows users to change boot settings, making it possible to reset the system using a Windows 10 installation media. This approach is particularly useful when the operating system fails to load or becomes inaccessible.

C. Accessing BIOS

Accessing BIOS typically involves restarting the computer and pressing a designated key (such as F2, F10, or Delete) during the boot process. The specific key varies depending on the device's manufacturer and model.

Preparing for factory reset from BIOS

A. Backing up important data

Before performing a factory reset, it is essential to back up important data, as the process will erase all files and settings. Users can create a backup by copying files to an external storage device, such as a USB drive, or using a cloud storage service.

B. Gathering necessary software and drivers

After resetting the system, certain drivers or software may need to be reinstalled. It is advisable to gather these before the reset, storing them on an external storage device or a cloud storage service for easy access.

C. Creating a Windows 10 installation media

To factory reset Windows 10 from BIOS, users will need a Windows 10 installation media (either a USB flash drive or a DVD). This can be created by using the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool from Microsoft's official website.

Accessing the BIOS menu

A. Restarting the computer

To access the BIOS menu, users should first restart their computer. As the device starts up, the manufacturer's logo will appear on the screen.

B. Pressing the appropriate key to enter BIOS setup

During the boot process, users must press the designated key (F2, F10, or Delete) to enter the BIOS setup. This key depends on the device's manufacturer and model, often indicated on the screen during startup.

C. Navigating the BIOS interface

Once in the BIOS setup, users can navigate the menu using the arrow keys on their keyboard. Enter key allows selecting options, while the Esc key can be used to return to the previous menu or exit the BIOS setup.

Configuring BIOS settings for factory reset

A. Changing the boot order

In the BIOS menu, users should navigate to the “Boot” tab and change the boot order so that the Windows 10 installation media (USB or DVD) is listed as the first boot device. This ensures that the system will boot from the installation media instead of the hard drive during the reset process.

B. Disabling Fast Boot and Secure Boot

Fast Boot and Secure Boot options should be disabled under the “Boot” tab. Disabling Fast Boot allows the system to run the necessary POST tests, while disabling Secure Boot ensures compatibility with the Windows 10 installation media.

C. Enabling Legacy Support or CSM (if applicable)

Some devices may require enabling Legacy Support or CSM (Compatibility Support Module) to boot using the Windows 10 installation media. This option can be found under the “Boot” tab or in a separate menu, depending on the BIOS interface.

Performing the factory reset using Windows 10 installation media

A. Inserting the installation media (USB or DVD) into the computer

With the BIOS settings properly configured, users should insert the Windows 10 installation media into the appropriate slot or USB port.

B. Restarting the computer and booting from the installation media

Once the installation media is inserted, users should restart their computer. The system will now boot from the Windows 10 installation media.

C. Following the prompts to the Reset this PC option

After booting from the installation media, users will be guided through several prompts. They should select the appropriate language settings and then choose the “Repair your computer” option. From there, go to “Troubleshoot” > “Reset this PC.”

D. Selecting either ‘Keep my files' or ‘Remove everything' based on preference

Users are presented with two options: “Keep my files,” which preserves personal files while resetting the operating system, or “Remove everything,” which erases all files and settings. The desired option should be selected based on individual preferences.

E. Allowing the reset process to complete

Once the selected option is confirmed, the factory reset process will begin. The system may restart several times during the process. Users should allow the process to complete, which may take some time.

Post-reset process

A. Setting up Windows 10 after factory reset

Once the factory reset is complete, users will need to set up Windows 10 by following the on-screen prompts. This includes creating a user account, connecting to Wi-Fi, and configuring various settings.

B. Reinstalling necessary software and drivers

Users should then reinstall the necessary drivers or software that had been gathered before the reset.

C. Restoring backed-up data

Lastly, users can restore their backed-up data by transferring files from the external storage device or downloading them from their cloud storage service.

Troubleshooting common issues

A. Reset process fails or encounters errors

If the factory reset process fails or encounters errors, users can try repeating the process or reverting BIOS settings to their default values.

B. Missing drivers after reset

If drivers are missing after the reset, users should visit their device manufacturer's websites and download the appropriate drivers.

C. Computer fails to boot after reset

If the computer fails to boot after the reset process, users may need to perform additional or seek professional assistance, as the issue may be hardware-related.


Performing a factory reset from BIOS can effectively resolve a variety of Windows 10 issues. It is important, however, to back up essential data and be prepared to reinstall necessary software and drivers. Regular maintenance, such as updating software, removing clutter, and scanning for malware, can minimize the need for factory resets in the future.


Q: What is a factory reset in Windows 10?

A: A factory reset, also known as a hard reset or master reset, is the process of erasing all data and settings on a device and restoring its software to its original state.

Q: How can I factory reset my Windows 10 PC from BIOS?

A: To factory reset Windows 10 from BIOS, you'll need to create a Windows 10 installation media, change BIOS settings (boot order, disabling Fast/Secure Boot, and enabling Legacy Support), and follow the steps to execute the reset process.

Q: How do I access BIOS in Windows 10?

A: Accessing BIOS typically involves restarting the computer and pressing a designated key (such as F2, F10, or Delete) during the boot process.

Q: How long does it take to factory reset a Windows 10 PC from BIOS?

A: The factory reset process can take anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours, depending on the device's specifications and the amount of data being erased.

Q: Can I perform a factory reset without losing my files?

A: Yes, you can choose the “Keep my files” option during the reset process. However, it is still recommended to back up your important data before resetting, as a precaution.

Q: What happens if the factory reset process encounters errors or fails?

A: You can try repeating the process or reverting BIOS settings to their default values. If the issue persists, seek professional assistance or consult your device manufacturer's support.

Q: Will factory resetting Windows 10 remove malware?

A: Factory resetting can help remove malware in most cases. However, some advanced malware may persist even after a reset. It is recommended to consult with a professional or use reputable antivirus software to remove such threats.

Table of Contents

Tracy C.
Tracy C.

Hi! I'm Tracy and I am the owner of this little website. I build it as a resource center to troubleshoot common tech, hardware and software issues.

My mission with is to make tech less intimidating and more approachable for all. With easy-to-understand content, troubleshooting guides an how-to articles, I am committed to demystifying intricate tech problems and providing simple, easy-to-follow solutions.

Contact me at [email protected] if you have any questions.

All Posts