Options to reduce support costs on Desktops by knowing how to use your operating system

This article talks about two options you get within Windows 8 and the new release update Windows 8.1, which give you a feature that can save money and time when dealing with computer problems. I find providing business owners with this knowledge ensures they can make a decision which in time can save money in support costs.  These features are best used when the computer is setup the right way, but if you do then it will reward your business with efficient support options.

Windows 8 can reset / refresh just like a mobile phone.

This is a feature of Windows 8 that can save so much time when it comes to computer problems and for that matter computers with viruses or malware.

In the enterprise you would here an IT administrator use the word “reimage” they use this method in lieu of fixing the machine because it is often more cost effective, most business do not even have this as an option.

Now with the Windows 8 family you can use the feature of Refresh and Reset options that quickly restore Windows to a fresh, factory default configuration just like the feature on most mobile phones.  IT administrators can still create an image option for the machine so when it is refreshed the image can be loaded with all the business applications pre-installed.

The difference between Refresh and Reset

Within Windows 8 there are two options the Refresh your PC and Reset your PC they both reset the computer to a factory default state.  Refresh preserves you files and installs modern Programs on the start menu, while reset removes everything from your system.  These options usually come up when your computer will not start, later you will know how to access them from within Windows.

Which method to use and when

If you are experiencing problems with your PC then you should always use the Refresh your PC option first.  Windows will restore your system files and desktop programs to their default state, saving your important personal files (and modern apps, if used)

Reset your PC returns it to a factory default state, which is best used when trying to eliminate viruses and malware, and you want to remove your personal data as well, or if you are just wanting a completely clean start, which beats reinstalling windows.

You can access these options, however they are a little hidden.  Go to your Charms Bar by moving you mouse to the top right or bottom of the display or press Windows + C; click settings (the gear icon), and then click Change PC settings.  You will see a list of options.

From here you will find a lot of useful options for your PC you may be interested in.

In the PC Settings app, click the General Category and scroll down to see the refresh you PC without affecting your files and the remove everything and reinstall windows.

Have a look through other PC settings you will be surprised what you see.

I do not intend for people to go out and refresh or reset your PC, but it will at least spark a conversation with your IT support in making a decision to upgrade to Windows 8 or if already there looking at how you can have this feature enabled correctly to reduce support costs when you experience problems.

Any questions please do not hesitate to contact me.


Shaun Goethals

Shaun Goethals

Director / Principal Consultant at IT System Solutions

My personal life is at the opposite end to the working life. I have a small property North of Melbourne with lots of animals a few kids and wife, I have been working in IT for over 15 years and in 2013 started IT System Solutions. My focus with IT is to support small to medium sized businesses who need reliable IT support and flexible solutions. We especially enjoy working with start-ups in helping them navigate the technology they need.

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