How To Reset Windows 7 To Factory Settings

If you don’t have a Windows 7 Installation CD and forgot to create a System Restore point you can still make your Windows as good as new with a few steps. It’s better to reset your PC to factory settings than reinstalling in most cases because you won’t loose any User Files and also resetting takes a lot less time(depending on the number of applications you installed and changed you made). There is no option built into Windows 7 to reset to factory settings but you can do it on your own. You can easily get rid of all the softwares you have installed since you installed Windows and also get rid of whatever toll these installations have taken on your PC.In a fresh Windows Installation unless you have a modified Windows 7 CD it will only contain softwares from Microsoft. So first thing you may think about doing is to get rid of all the softwares that you installed.  We also need to Clean the computer’s registry, remove all logs, invalid shortcuts, temporary files etc.


Just follow these steps to get your Windows as good as new:

Remove additional User accounts

Having many Users on your computer can lead to loss of a lot of memory on your Hard disk as the preferences of all the Users will be saved. So it is best to remove these additional accounts. To remove additional User accounts:

  • Run cmd.exe to open Command Prompt. In command Prompt type this in net user administrator /active:yes and press Enter key.
  • This will activate the Default Administrator account. Now just Log off from your Account and Log into the Administrator Account. After that right click Computer then click Properties.

Reset Windows 7 to factory settings

  • On the left sidebar you can see “Advanced System Settings”, click that to open a system Properties Window. Click the “Settings” option near User Profiles. After that just select all the other accounts and delete them.

Remove 3rd Party Applications

Installing 3rd party softwares always take a toll on your PC. They can leave behind many side effects such as Invalid Shortcuts, Empty Folders, Saved Preferences, Log Files and Options in Context Menu. These side effects are the reason why a lot of people prefer to Reinstall Windows once in a while. But there is no need to resort to such drastic measures all the time. You can actually remove all these problems with a few Tweaks in Windows Registry or with some softwares. Follow the following steps in order:

  • Uninstalling Third Part Applications – To uninstall all of your 3rd party applications you have to take Programs and Features in Control Panel. Then just right click each of the programs that are not by Microsoft that you have installed in your PC and click Uninstall. If the Uninstaller asks whether or not to keep Preferences, choose to Delete these Preferences. This is the only actual time consuming step all the others are very fast when compared to this step.

Remove Files and Folders Left behind

Reset Windows 7 to factory settings

  • Now we are going to fix any damage done to the registry and also remove anything left behind after uninstalling of programs such as empty folders and also invalid shortcuts. For this we have for you a simple, free tool – Glary Utilities. Download it, Install it. You don’t have to upgrade it or anything. It has all the features that we need without updating. Open Glary Utilities and Under “1-Click Maintenance” Click on Scan for Issues. This should take a  couple of minutes only. This will remove all invalid shortcuts, traces, temporary files etc. Now only thing remaining to do on Glary Utilities is to remove empty folders.  So go to Modules in main window of Glary Utilities. Then click duplicate file finder. Now just select the drives in which you installed softwares. If you have drives which you maintain by yourself for storing data it is not necessary to check there. After the list of empty folders is generated by Glary then just check the ones you wish to delete or to just click Check All under the Check option and then click Delete Checked Folders. If you are sharing any folders on a network they will cause some trouble in deleting. So if you do have any shared folders then stop sharing them. To do so right click Computer then Manage. In the Computer Management windows that will now open select shared folders then Shares. You can stop sharing folders from here by right clicking on them and clicking Stop sharing.
  • Now all that is left in this section is to remove logs from your PC. This is quite simple. Just run cmd.exe to open Command Prompt. Type in Del *.log /a /s /q /f. That’s it.

Remove Shell Components and Startup Programs

This step is for those who decided to skip the 2nd step i.e. Removing 3rd party applications. Usually after uninstalling any program shell components that it added will be removed. In case was some error and it was not removed then you can remove them by following these simple steps.

  • Removing New Menu Items – If you have any items in this menu that were left behind after un-installation of a program due to some error or because you did not un-install the program then you can remove it using this simple tool. This tool helps disable these items from New Menu. Download it from here. Open the program and select the item you want to remove from the New Menu  and click Disable.
  • Removing Right Click Menu Items – Installing many softwares will lead to piling up of such items. You can remove them using this software. Just go to the Remove Tab from the Main window, right click on the item then click Delete.Download the software from here.
  • Removing Start Up Items – You can either use some software such as CCleaner,  Glary Utilities etc. or you can do it my Opening System Configuration and then removing them. To open system Management run msconfig. Then under the Startup tab in the System Configuration just un-check the items you want to remove.

Your Windows installation should be as good as new if you follow these simple steps. It is best after following these steps to create a Restore point. To create a restore point just search for “Create a restore point” in start menu. Click the Result to open a System Properties Window. Then just click Create. That’s it. Now you have a Clean Windows Installation and also have a restore point in case Windows ends up in its old unclean state again.