I currently have Windows 10 and Linux Mint dual booting on my computer. My Windows 10 partition has been acting up for years and I wanted to do a factory reset. I have had a variety of issues doing this from the "Reset this PC" button telling me I don't have the necessary files, to then writing a new boot drive and trying "Repair my computer" only for the "Reset this PC" option to still be missing. I then managed to get "Reset this PC" to start but everytime it either crashes and reverts all changes, or freezes for upwards of 12 hours and I have to manually turn off the computer mid reset. If more specifics about my various crashes are needed please let me know.

What is the best way forward here? Most guides I have been looking at suggest doing a clean install, which I have already created the boot drive for, but you seem to need to delete and merge partitions and I don't want to jeopardize my working primary Linux Mint partition. I also don't have any working system restore points as I rarely even turn on my Windows partition and it has been glitchy for years, so resets and fresh installs seem the best option.

(Also I don't know the relevance of this but I never got the dual boot menu at startup strictly working correctly. I somehow ended up with Linux in a Legacy boot and Windows in a UEFI so I just chose between them in the boot mode settings)

Edit: Adding some additional info. I'm using Linux Mint 18.3 Cinnamon 32 bit

~ $ lsblk NAME MAJ:MIN RM SIZE RO TYPE MOUNTPOINT sr0 11:0 1 1024M 0 rom
sda 8:0 0 465.8G 0 disk ├─sda4 8:4 0 490M 0 part ├─sda2 8:2 0 40M 0 part ├─sda9 8:9 0 152.2G 0 part /HOME ├─sda7 8:7 0 7.7G 0 part ├─sda10 8:10 0 7.5G 0 part [SWAP] ├─sda5 8:5 0 250.3G 0 part ├─sda3 8:3 0 128M 0 part ├─sda1 8:1 0 500M 0 part ├─sda8 8:8 0 46.6G 0 part / └─sda6 8:6 0 450M 0 part

Screenshot of disk manager on Mint

I also am no longer able to boot up my windows partition, but I believe this is the version number based on my recovery drive: Windows Version 10.0.17763.107

  • Mint is a bit special with EFI/UEFI what version number is in play for linux mint? you mention delete and merge partitions I presume from this you have an extended partition for Linux Mint... Could you please share a output paste or screenshot of the Disk manager and/or 'lsblk' output on the respective OSes? – linuxdev2013 Jan 7 at 21:58
  • Please do {Win-R}CMD{Enter}VER{Enter} and collect the Version number.. The result will look like Microsoft Windows [Version 10.0.1_nnnn.yyy_]. Then, do control /name Microsoft.System and advise which of the several Editions you have, Please click edit and add the 1nnnn number and the Edition name to your original question. There are multiple releases of Windows 10 for multiple editions, and we need to know which you have. – K7AAY Jan 7 at 22:01
  • Note that if you succeed in doing a factory reset you will lose your Linux partition, since Linux won't have been installed originally. If you want to keep Linux, use a Windows install disc and be careful which partition and overwrite options you choose. And back up first. The fact that factory reset isn't working means that you have probably lost one or other of the two recovery partitions, Windows recovery or OEM drivers/utilities (or both). – AFH Jan 7 at 22:15
  • @linuxdev2013 I've added that info to my original post. I was only able to get screenshots from Mint though. – anf3 Jan 10 at 1:30
  • @AFH Thanks for clearing that up. I hadn't realized that, now I'm glad I didn't accidentally erase my Linux partition. – anf3 Jan 10 at 1:33

I would recommend to do a clean reinstall of your Windows partition. Afterwards, you would have to make Mint accessible again, but that's easy with a live system on a USB Drive.

It's true though that you need at least 10 GB of space for the main partition.

Also from my experience, "factory reset" only resets Windows, it doesn't even touch your Linux.

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