If you need to install or reinstall Windows , you can use the tools on this page to create your own installation media using either a USB flash drive or a DVD. Use the media creation tool (aprx. MB) to download Windows. This tool provides the best download experience for customers running. Download Windows Disc Image (ISO File) If you need to install or reinstall Windows , you can use the tools on this page to create your own installation media using either a USB flash drive or a DVD. Windows editions below are valid for both Windows and Windows Professional. Follow the guidelines below to reinstall Windows on Dell systems that have a Windows OEM operating system recovery image download hosted on the Dell support website. Systems shipped with Windows
Most of the time, it's relatively harmless: Sometimes, as we've seen with today's "Superfish" news , it can be actively harmful, putting users' security at risk. With some effort, this unwanted and unsafe software can usually be uninstalled.
If you have an affected Lenovo PC, we've outlined the multi-step process for removing the software and the root certificate here. If you want to be sure that everything is completely removed and if you're willing to do the work , the more comprehensive solution is to completely reinstall Windows yourself.
It's not for everyone, but there are benefits to doing it this way—you get a totally clean PC that you're in full control over. Most OEMs don't include vanilla Windows install media with their systems anymore.
They usually opt to include a restore partition, and that restore image usually has all the same crapware in it that shipped with the PC in the first place. We never updated our Windows 7 and 8 install guides with information about Windows 8. We'll walk you through the basics of getting install media, installing Windows, and creating a new clean recovery image.
Before you start How to remove the Superfish malware: If you haven't set it up yet, go ahead and go through the first-time setup process and get to the Windows desktop. And if this is your only working computer, you may want to skip ahead to the "drivers and software" section of this piece so you can grab essential drivers before you wipe the computer. This process will totally erase your hard drive and all the data on it, so make sure you have a backup before you begin.
Because everyone's setup is different, we can't tell you a single surefire way to preserve all your files and settings, but Windows includes its own tools , and it's not too hard to dump everything in your user profile onto a USB stick or external hard drive.
You could also consider using a cloud service like OneDrive or Dropbox to keep things backed up. How Windows 8. This key was usually printed on a label stuck to the computer or some of the documentation that came with it. If the string was there, Windows would install without a key and activate automatically. Windows 8 made reinstalling Windows on OEM systems much easier. Changes to SLP mean that vanilla Microsoft install media can still look for those text strings and activate if it finds them.
That's why most PCs now lack the product key stickers that were stuck all over Windows 7 PCs; even for users who want to reinstall Windows, they're not really necessary anymore unless you're installing a version of Windows that's different from what came with the system. Microsoft provides a handy tool you can use to make vanilla Windows 8. Andrew Cunningham The System window will tell you the edition and architecture of your Windows version, if you don't already know it.
Andrew Cunningham The process will wipe your USB drive clean, so make sure there's nothing important on it. You won't need it. Andrew Cunningham Luckily, creating fresh vanilla install media for Windows 8. From any activated Windows 8. Pick the language, edition, and CPU architecture of the media you'd like to make—you can check this all in the System menu if you don't already know. We'll create media for a bit English US version of Windows 8.
Click Next and pick the drive you want to use, click Next and confirm that it's OK to format the USB drive, and the tool will download the Windows install files to the drive.
There are about 4GB of files, so this could take some time depending on your connection speed and Microsoft's servers. A note: Also, if your computer happened to ship with Windows 8 instead of Windows 8.
More investigation and further testing have brought to light some interesting information about PCs that came with Windows 8. Windows restore media created with the Windows Installation Media Creation Tool will install and activate just fine on systems that shipped with Windows 8.
Install media created from other sources, including the most recent "Windows 8. That this distinction exists at all is baffling, but if you're doing a lot of clean Windows installs on OEM PCs that shipped with both 8. There's actually a bit less work to be done with Windows 8 and 8. Windows 8. It's pretty good at getting usable, relatively recent drivers for most graphics cards, and it can get a fair number of integrated audio drivers too.
Some things don't change. Fingerprint readers will usually also want their own drivers, and trackpad drivers while usually not strictly necessary can make trackpads more reliable and enable advanced functions like the Windows 8.
This is especially true of the multitouch trackpads shipping with most Ultrabooks. If you're downloading this before you've reinstalled Windows, copy them to your USB drive for later. If you're downloading them after you've installed Windows and grabbed what you can from Windows Update, just install them as you download them. Installing the trialware and adware that got you here in the first place kind of defeats the purpose.
If there are any programs you know you'll want installed on your PC, you can also download those beforehand. A few common links: Some enthusiasts who want to install a large number of apps all at once recommend Ninite , a service that lets you download and install a bunch of different individual programs at once. The free version of Ninite promises to download the latest versions of apps directly from their providers and install them without any extra toolbars, which is handy.
Updated November 16, , 8: Microsoft is misleading consumers here. This was a problem in the past, so Microsoft fixed the licensing problem in Windows 8. But — surprise! Considering the Windows 10 announcement happening tomorrow, we have to assume they will be making licensing changes in the future. It showed up at the top of Amazon and Newegg when you searched for Windows. The popularity stats showed most people bought System Builder copies.