How Long Does It Take To Reset A Dell Laptop

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Are you facing occasional hangs? Does the dell screen freeze, or is the laptop malfunctioning? This usually happens when bugs or viruses have corrupted the laptop; forcing you to purchase a new one. However; one quick trick to solve all these problems is to factory reset the dell laptop. This leads us to the question: how long does it take to reset a Dell laptop?

Factory resetting your laptop means setting it to default. This means that all your personal data i.e. documents; emails, files, videos, audio, and applications you’ve installed would get wiped out. Therefore; it’s usually advised to back up all the data before hard resetting to prevent data loss.

How Long Does It Take To Reset A Dell Laptop?

The time for a factory reset depends on various factors. You cannot exactly pinpoint the time; however, it usually takes about 30 minutes to 3 hrs; depending upon the laptop operating system, and its internal hardware. The processor, storage and RAM impact the time taken for resetting. If your Dell laptop contains plenty of data; then the resetting will take a longer time; about 2 to 3 hrs; however; if your laptop doesn’t have much data, to begin with; then it will usually finish within 20 to 30 minutes. Moreover; the time will also depend on the type of method you are employing to hard reset the laptop i.e. via startup, settings, and BIOS.

How Long Does It Take To Reset A Dell Laptop

Factors On Which Dell Laptop Reset Time Depends

  • Age: The older your Dell laptop; the longer it will take to hard reset; the final time may exceed over 3 hrs
  • Programs: The more applications and programs installed in your Dell gadget; the more time it will take to wipe out approximately 2-3 hours.
  • Type and Number Of Drives: If your Dell laptop has 4 HDDs; then it will take 3 hours or more to reset them; however if the storage type is SSD; then it may only take an hour.
  • RAM: If your Dell laptop has 2GB  RAM; then resetting processes will be very slow; whereas if the RAM is 8/16/32GB then it may take 1 to 2 hours to factory reset.

Factory Resetting Dell Laptop-3 Quick Methods

There are 3 quick ways in which you can factory reset the Dell laptop:

  • Reset Dell Laptop Via Startup
  • Reset Dell Laptop Via Settings
  • Reset Dell Laptop Via BIOS

Let’s discuss these in detail.

Method 1# Reset Dell Laptop Via Start-Up- 30 minutes To 3 hours

In this method; 

  1. Click on the Windows icon
  2. Select power icon
  3. Press the shift key and click on restart
  4. A window will open with the following options:
  • Turn off PC
  • Troubleshoot PC
  • Continue
  1. Click on Troubleshoot; from there another new window will open; providing further 3 options to choose  from:
  • Restart PC
  • Reset PC
  • Advanced options
  1. Click Reset PC;
  2. From there laptop will ask you to select from the following two options;
  • Keep my files
  • Remove everything
  1. Now; this is where the time difference comes; if you select the keep my files option; then your laptop will reset everything; except your files; this process is completed in usually 20 minutes. However; if you choose the option; to remove everything; then the computer will start deleting ad resetting everything. The time here will depend on your storage. If the laptop has 1TB storage; the process may take about 30 minutes to an hour; however if the laptop has 2 to 3TB storage; then it will take around 2 to 3 hours to wipe out all the data.


  • If you are planning on selling your laptop; then it’s better to reset the device; so that no other can access your data.
  • If you are unable to find the files after the factory reset; then try installing the files manually
  • Before agreeing to hand over your data to a third party; make sure you see their privacy policies.

Method 2# Reset Dell Laptop Via BIOS- 1 To 2hours

You can reset the Dell to factory settings; during boot-up. For this:

  1. Restart your laptop; when the Dell logo appears press the F8 key. 
  2. This will open the BIOS; Go to the advanced boot-up options; and click on repair the computer
  3. The system Recovery option window will open; select US for Keyboard input and language.
  4. Click on Next; 
  5. The computer will ask you to log in via the administrative account; type only the username; leave the password box;
  1. Select the Dell Data safe Restore and Emergency Backup option from the System Recovery option.
  2. Then; click on restore my computer; your laptop will reset within 1 to 2 hrs. When the process finishes; hit the finish icon; to restart your laptop.

Method 3# Reset Dell Laptop Via Settings-20 minutes to 3 hours

In this method; 

  1. Go to the search bar, and type; settings
  2. Slet update and security
  3. Click on the Recovery tab, and select reset this PC;
  4. Click on get started.
  5. The laptop will ask you to choose an option;
  • Remove files and clean the drive
  • Remove files 
  1. If you choose Remove files; it will take only 20 to 30 minutes to reset; however, if you select to remove the files and clean drive option; then the process may last for about 2 to 3 hours.

WARNING: Before hard reset; back up data by using external drives and cloud storage. This step is important; if missed; you can lose your data.

How To Handle Reset Stuck Issue?

Sometimes; while resetting; your laptop gets stuck; to fix this issue; you can use the following fixes:

Fix 1# Wait

As stated earlier; factory resetting usually takes 30 minutes to 3 hours or more depending upon hardware configuration and the data; therefore; wait for the whole processor to finish.

Fix 2# Change BIOS Settings

Sometimes; improper BIOS settings can also cause issues in the reset process. Modify the settings to prevent interference. Turn on the CSM and turn off the secure boot settings.

Fix 3# Disable Internet

Your network connection can also cause interference; therefore; unplug the ethernet cable and switch off the router; to disconnect the internet.

Fix 4# Reinstall OS

Even after trying all the fixes; the reset stuck persists; then you need to reinstall your operating system.


Factory reset assists in dealing with bugs, viruses and other software issues; however, the consumer always wonder how long does it take to reset a dell laptop? It usually takes about 30 minutes to 3 hours; the time even exceeds; it depends on the amount of data and your hardware configuration. If you decide to keep files; then you can factory reset the laptop within 30 minutes; however if you decide to remove everything; it will take usually 2 to 3 hours. You can reset the dell laptop via start-up; settings and BIOS. If during the resetting; issues arise; you can also fix them using the fixes mentioned above.

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