Running a factory reset for a Dell laptop Inspiron _i_s fairly simple. The factory reset on Dell laptop models is fairly consistent across the board and this process will work on more than only the Inspiron.
The factory reset will wipe everything and essentially erase everything done after purchasing the computer. It will return to the original settings with the same images and everything.
Before you wipe a Dell computer, backup your files to ensure nothing is lost. When you run the reset, all information stored on the computer is permanently deleted. You can backup using a number of different systems.
Consider setting up a cloud storage system to hold all of your valued information. Google Drive and Dropbox are two popular programs offering cloud solutions with free account options. After you reach a certain storage threshold however, additional storage will require a fee. You can also store files on a USB drive or a larger physical backup drive.
To backup the files, open your control panel and access the folders that you want to save. Simply copy the folders and paste them into your storage folder. A physical storage will show up in the control panel right alongside the other folders for easy copy and pasting. A cloud drive may require that you download the folders through their system.
After running a backup, check each file to ensure it saved properly. You will not have another chance to save the files so make sure it was done correctly and everything is present.
First, remove everything plugged into the computer except the power cord. The Inspiron is a laptop so there is no mouse, keyboard or monitor plug. If you have anything like an external drive, printer or other outside device, remove the connection.
Open your computer's search function and enter Reset to retrieve a list of options. Alternatively, you can access System Settings from the control panel. Choose the Reset this PC option to trigger a reset. Click the Restart Now option under advanced startup.
This will trigger a window with several options. Click on Troubleshoot then Factory Image Restore. A screen will trigger with a series of steps to accept. Run through each prompt until the computer restarts. It takes some time to execute as everything is wiped and reformatted to the original settings.
After the restart, your computer is restored to the factory settings and is the same as when it was brand new.
One alternative route exists for wiping the computer clean. Access the same Reset this PC function in the system settings and select Get Started. Choose Remove Everything to wipe the computer. You will have the option to only delete your files or to delete everything and clean the entire drive.
After the process is completed, the computer will restart with a fresh drive. This is the quickest method of wiping the hard drive on a Dell Inspiron.
These instructions are specific to Windows 10. Every operating system has a slightly different process to restore the factory settings. The process can also be different if your Dell Inspiron is having difficulties loading the operating system.
In many cases, restoring the factory settings is done when the current system is malfunctioning. Dell provides detailed instructions for restoring on a machine that is not loading correctly.
Zach Lazzari is a freelance writer with extensive experience in startups and digital advertising. He has a diverse background with a strong presence in the digital marketing world. Zach has developed and sold multiple successful web properties and manages marketing for multiple clients in the outdoor industry. He has published business content in Angling Trade Magazine and writes white papers and case studies for multiple corporate partners.