How to Restore IBM Computers to Factory Settings

By G.K. Bayne

Since Windows 2000 was introduced, most IBM computers were delivered to the customer with the option to return the system to factory settings. Provided the Pre-load partition on the hard drive has not been erased, this process can be done any time the consumer feels a need, such as after a virus infestation or simply to start over with a like-new system.

Things You'll Need

  • IBM computer
  • CD or DVD writeable disks
  • CD or DVD burner

On a IBM Desktop System

Step 1

Back up all important data to a CD or DVD before beginning this process. Once this process is complete, all programs that you have added to the computer, along with all data will be deleted. Be sure and back up email files, along with Internet favorites for your browser.

Step 2

Shut down your computer. Once the computer has completely shut down, reboot and press the "F11" key on your keyboard as the computer reboots and before the operating system begins to load.

Step 3

Choose the option "Full Recovery" in the Rescue and Recovery program on the screen.

Step 4

Follow the onscreen instruction to restore your computer to factory settings.

On an IBM Laptop system

Step 1

Back up your data before starting this process.

Step 2

Turn off your computer. After the computer has completely shut down, turn the laptop on.

Step 3

Press the "F1" button, or the blue Access IBM button if your laptop has that option.

Step 4

Choose "Restore Factory Settings" from the Menu screen that opens on your computer.

Step 5

Follow all onscreen instructions. When the process is complete, the laptop is restored to factory settings.

Tips & Warnings

  • The onscreen instructions for restoring your IBM computer to factory settings will differ on depending on whether it is a laptop or a desktop, model number and installed operating system. The instructions are self explanatory and you should have no trouble following them, no matter what type of system you have.IBM also offers a program that will make Rescue and Recovery disks for your computer if the Pre-load area is damaged. You can create these disks by clicking on your Start Menu and choosing All Programs. Click on Access IBM and then choose the option to Create Recovery Disks.

References & Resources