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Sometimes, you just want a fresh start. With Windows, a clean install offers instant relief from the strange ailments that can befall a system where you've been messing around with poorly written desktop applications.
Windows 8 offers two quick and easy alternatives to the traditional (and tedious) full install. The first is a Reset, which restores your system to its like-new condition, wiping out all your data files and settings in the process.
The second option, Refresh your PC, is much kinder and gentler. It restores your system like a clean install, but doesn't tamper with your data, your settings, or your Metro style apps. You need to reinstall any programs you installed from downloads or disks, a process made easier by the list that appears on your desktop.
To make the process even easier, you can create a custom refresh image using the command line tool I document in Save a custom refresh point .