A Dell PC Restore allows you to revert your computer back to original factory settings. This is sometimes also called a System Recovery and can be done either by a set of Recovery CDs or a second partition on the hard drive that has a compressed version of the factory image on it. Either way, a PC Restore is used to wipe and take your computer back to where it was on the day you opened the box. A Dell PC Restore from the secondary partition generally will take around fifteen minutes to complete.

Warning: Performing a PC Restore will delete everything on your hard drive. Be sure to backup anything you do not want to lose.

A few other things to keep in mind with a Dell PC Restore is that you will lose any settings or applications you installed after receiving your computer. Be sure to take a quick inventory of your system and make sure you have the installation disks for new applications you’ve added. Also, you will not be able to PC Restore via the second partition to a hard drive other than one you received directly from Dell.

Backup Before A Dell PC Restore

Most people do not remember to backup everything. While they may grab their Pictures, Videos and Documents, it’s easy to forget Outlook contacts and emails, Internet Favorites from your browser, encryption keys for anything that might be encrypted and passwords that might be saved in the IE or Firefox. A good practice is to grab everything from the “Documents and Settings” folder under the C: drive in XP or the “Users” folder in Windows Vista.

How to run the Dell System Recovery

backup and run a dell system recovery

The Dell PC Restore is relatively easy once all the prep-work is done. You will boot the computer and begin tapping the F8 key. You will see an option called “Repair Your Computer.”  Select Dell Factory Image Restore and then click Next.

Click the check box that says “yes, reformat hard drive and restore system software to factory condition.”

The restore process will begin. Once it’s finished, boot back into your new Windows environment and immediately visit Microsoft Update to get any security patches that may have come out after the release of the computer. This is important.

Be sure to read our other Dell computer tutorials for more information on this topic.