Microsoft has added lots of new features and stuff on Windows 8 and it is also noteworthy that they have introduced better recovery options in Windows 8. Windows 8 gives us two types of Windows recovery options, the first it is Reset and the second is Refresh. Both are very important recovery options because they help to get Windows back in healthy mode. If your system is not running well and has some issues then you can use the Refresh option. It will refresh your PC without causing any loss of your personal information. On the other hand, Reset option will completely erase all of your personal information such as photos, music and others documents and install a new Windows 8 version on your PC. Reset feature will restore the whole Windows 8 into default factory setting. To read more about Windows 8 Reset and Refresh, you can read my earlier article here.
While we Reset or Refresh any Windows 8 system, Windows 8 asks for installation media and this might be an issue for quite a few people. It is not possible that we always carry Windows 8 installation media to solve Windows 8 issues. The most uncomplicated way is that you must have a bootable Windows 8 USB pen drive so that you are able to use it in case of any Windows issues. I know that we can’t engage our USB pen drive only Windows 8 so I have a better solution which lets you Reset/Refresh PC without having any installation Media.
Process to Reset or Refresh Windows 8 without any installation media:
The process is very simple to follow and you need Windows 8 installation media only one time.
1. First of all, create an Empty folder and rename it to Win8 on the location where Windows is installed (C: drive in most cases), make sure the partition that you are using to create Win8 has sufficient space, approx. 4 to 5GB.
2. Now you need to copy install.wim from the installation media. If you don’t have any installation media but have the ISO image of Windows 8 instead, you can right-click on the ISO image file and select the Mount option. Windows 8 is able to open ISO files without the help of any third party software. After opening the ISO image or installation media, go to sources folder and copy the install.wim file and paste it into the Win8 folder that you created in the first step.
Once you have successfully copied the install.wim file in the Winbackup folder, open Charms Bar Search option and search for CMD keyword. You will see that Command Prompt has appeared on the left side of the search screen. Right-click on Command Prompt then click on the Run as administrator option from the resulting pop-up menu. Command Prompt must run with administrator privileges in order to execute administrator commands. Otherwise we can access normal command mode after entering the CMD command in Windows RUN box (Win + R).
After that, execute the following command:
reagentc.exe /setosimage /path C:\Win8 /target c:\Windows /Index 1
If your command runs successfully without any error, you will get the same result that I got when I executed the above command on my PC. (See the below image)
That’s it! The next time around, you will never need to insert any Windows 8 installation media to Reset or Restore Windows 8.