Your Checklist for What to Do After a Factory Reset

My desktop was away for repairs for 2.5 weeks. It’s taking about 2.5 days to get it back where I want it.

I didn’t know the tech guys would do a factory reset. Now, like the woman at the conveyor belt. I decide about each app, setting, preference, and website that comes by.

Your Checklist for What to Do After a Factory Reset

You should be able to use parts of this article whether you:

  • use the cloud for storage or not
  • are restoring a Mac, PC, or phone
  • are switching to a new device

Plan for a Factory Reset

Save Data

If I’d known about having a reset, I would’ve done more beforehand. Fortunately, I had done the minimum. I backed up all my data to an external hard drive. I copied the following folders:

  • Desktop
  • Documents
  • Downloads
  • Music
  • Pictures
  • Videos

(You may have everything on the cloud already.)

It turned out fine for me to do only a data backup. Since you have some warning about your reset, you could do more to prepare.  Read these articles for more details:

Plan or Postpone Projects

I didn’t know how long I’d be without my desktop. Plus, I do multi-step processes a certain way, so:

  • I wrote and printed our prayer letter two weeks early before I took the computer in.
  • I waited until my desktop was back before doing any P&A medical reimbursements.

Precautions to Take While Your Computer Is Away

I do half of my work on the cloud, so working on these things was business as usual.

I could have used my external hard drive for my other work. Instead, I put new and revised documents on my laptop’s desktop. Having these in one place seemed wiser than keeping them in various folders on the external drive. (See the next section for how I brought these files onto my desktop.)

What to Do After a Factory Reset

I’m prioritizing your steps, starting with the essentials and ending with the finishing touches. I’m not presenting an exhaustive checklist. I’ve included enough to spark your thinking about what you must do.

Gotta Have It

The following are essential: they’re basic functions or affect security. I’m so grateful Cru Tech Help took care of this for me. Thanks, Javier, Kenny, Nathan, and Curt!!

  • Windows
  • Microsoft Office
  • Security
  • Drivers and updates, if needed

Annoying If You Don’t Update

Set aside plenty of time to take care of these things:

  • Data
  • Apps
  • Setting up two monitors
  • Reconnecting your Bluetooth mouse
  • Et cetera

Since I didn’t plan for this reset, I looked for EXE files in my Downloads folder. I reinstalled applications I’d downloaded or purchased over the last several years. This was a close call for me.

I spent a lot of time opening our password manager app. I needed passwords to log back into many apps, extensions, and websites.

I mentioned earlier about data. Everything I needed to transfer was on my laptop’s desktop. I moved these into a folder on a thumb drive. I plugged the thumb drive into my desktop and moved these files to my desktop’s and the external backup drive’s folders.

“The Goodies”

You’ll discover these little things over time as you work.

  • What you want to open on startup
  • Extensions and bookmarks on Chrome
  • Personalizing your wallpaper
  • Turning your night light setting back on to ease eye strain
  • Customizing your taskbars and toolbars
  • Default settings, such as for your printer

Now that you’ve done all this, why not…?

  • Create multiple desktops for  productivity in Windows
  • Do some “spring cleaning” of files and folders
  • Move some things to the cloud

I hope this has been helpful. Feel free to contact me at Sus dot Schmitt at cru dot org.


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