Windows 10: Clearing (and restoring) Private data

  1.    26 Apr 2016 #1

    Clearing (and restoring) Private data

    Hi I have some Questions about „cleaning“ up or removing personal/private data & configuration from a Windows 10 PC.

    It is about a PC that should be sent to the Vendor to get repaired.
    It is not my PC but from a friend.
    Usually in such a case I would create an image from the System and reset the OS to factory settings to wipe the data/settings.
    But this time I don’t have enough space (and will not have time for it) (Don’t need suggestions for Imaging).

    The normal Data (documents, pictures …) are regularly saved / backup so not needed to be saved additionally.
    The goal would be removing / backing up the personal Data (in a fast and space saving way) to have them removed and make it possible to put them back, but not deleting /removing the installed Programs, applications and Games (Win32).

    From my experience with Windows 7 or Older PCs I would also:

    • Browser: backup Profile and clean it (Easy to restore)
    • Mail Program: backup Profile and clean it (Easy to restore)
    • Change User password (easy to restore)

    But as for Windows 10 there are some new … implications about the

    • connected Microsoft account
    • and the Apps

    How to deal with them?
    How to remove / disconnect them in a way I can restore afterwards again?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    26 Apr 2016 #2

    Really - easiest thing to do is simply make an image backup despite your objection above, reset your PC, then restore image when you get PC back. This 100% guarantees you have got rid of personal data, and everything is backed up.

    Use a good tool like Macrium Reflect Free to do image backup.

    Really no point in shagging around with other solutions.

    Even easier option is too simply remove HDD, and clean install 10 on another hdd if you have an old spare one.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    27 Apr 2016 #3

    Install Rollback Rx Home Edition (Make sure it's the Home Edition as that's the free one), take a snapshot of your system, delete/change what you need, take another snapshot. When they're done just revert back to the 1st snapshot.

    Also, this isn't like disk imaging, so you won't have the massive time suck or financial investment.

    Good Luck!
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    27 Apr 2016 #4

    Thanks for the answers, but as mentioned a solution Like a Image Backup is simply not wanted/needed :)
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5. axe0's Avatar
    Posts : 13,723
    Windows 10 Pro
       27 Apr 2016 #5

    Are there any personal changes made with the Microsoft account and apps?

    Changes made in apps may not come back while restoring.
    With the Microsoft account, a lot is synchronized, most things should restore as you may be aware of.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  6.    01 May 2016 #6

    not so much, chsnges,
    but within that account there are many Win32 Applications installed with (as it is the Only account) ... (nothing personal).
    But I would like to keep all ...

    Is there a way to disconnect account from MS?

    Also there is the Mail App ...
    I don't know what is the best way of backing up -> cleaning -> restoring it ... -->? :)
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7. axe0's Avatar
    Posts : 13,723
    Windows 10 Pro
       02 May 2016 #7

    Is there a way to disconnect account from MS?
    In the settings, click 'Account', click 'Sign in with a local account instead'.

    The mail app is a synced app, there shouldn't be a thing to do to restore the data except for logging in again.
      My ComputersSystem Spec


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