How to Uninstall Windows 10 and Return to Windows XP, Windows 7 or Windows 8.1

uninstall or remove Windows 10

This site has spent a LOT of time and energy showing you how to upgrade and install Windows 10.

We have spent little to no time trying to show you how to remove Windows 10.

If you upgraded to Windows 10 recently but are having non-buyers remorse (it’s free for most of you), here’s the good thing – you can back out of it.

Whether you started on Windows XP, Windows 7 or Windows 8.1, you can uninstall Windows 10 or remove Windows 10 from your PC pretty easily.

This page will show you how.

For your learning pleasure, we have both the video and text instructions about how to uninstall Windows 10.

First, the video.

Uninstalling Windows 10 – Video

Next, the text instructions on how to uninstall or remove Windows 10 from your PC.

Uninstalling Windows 10 – step by step

Before you begin, it’s always a healthy idea to back up your PC.

Windows 10 offers the option to downgrade to Windows 7 or Windows 8 only if:

  • You did an in-place upgrade to Windows 10. That is, you didn’t do a clean install but rather upgraded Windows while letting the upgrade wizard keep your files and programs.
  • It’s been less than a month since you upgraded.
  • You didn’t delete the Windows.old folder. That temp folder is created during the upgrade. It’s needed for the rollback operation.

If all three of those don’t apply to you, you’ll have to reinstall Windows 8.1 or Windows 7 instead of using this option.

If they do apply, here’s how to go back to your previous version of Windows.

1. Open Settings. You can do this from the Start Menu.

Open Settings
Open Settings

2. Next, Click Update & security.

Updates and Security
Update and Security

3. Next, Go to Recovery and then click the Get started button under Go back to Windows 8 (or Windows 7)

Go back to Windows 8
Recovery – Go back to Windows 8

4. Check your reason for rolling back and click Next.

Check your reasons
Check your reasons

5. Click “No, thanks” to skip checking for updates.

uninstall Windows 10
No Thanks

6. Click Next to go through Microsoft’s warnings screens about rolling back.

notifications and warnings
Notifications and warnings

7. Click “Go back to Windows 8” to roll back.

Go back to Windows 8
Go back to Windows 8

Windows will restart and restore your previous version of Windows.

The install may take about 15 to 20 minutes but after that, you’ll see your previous login screen.

I hope this was useful.

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