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How to Set a Custom Recovery Image as Active to use to Refresh Windows 10

warning   Warning
This tutorial no longer works starting with Windows 10 build 10130 released on May 29th 2015.

information   Information
If you're having problems with Windows 10 on your PC, you can try to refresh, reset, or restore it.

By default, here's what happens when you refresh your PC:
  • Your files and personalization setting won't change.
  • Your PC settings will be changed back to their defaults.
  • Apps from the Windows Store will be kept.
  • Apps you installed from discs or websites will be removed. Basically all installed desktop apps.


The recimg.exe command line tool lets you configure a custom recovery image for Windows to use when you refresh your PC. When you create a custom recovery image, it will contain the desktop apps you've installed, and the Windows system files in their current state. Recovery images do not contain your documents, personal settings, user profiles, or apps from Windows Store, because that information is automatically preserved at the time you refresh your PC.

Basically, a custom recovery image let's you refresh Windows 10 as usual with your current Windows, but also lets you keep your desktop apps and Windows system files as they were when the recovery image was created.

When you create a custom recovery image, recimg will store it in the specified directory, and set it as the active recovery image. If a custom recovery image is set as the active recovery image, Windows will use it when you refresh your PC instead of the default OEM recovery image (if present) or Windows installation media. All recovery images have the filename CustomRefresh.wim. If no CustomRefresh.wim file is found in the active recovery image directory, Windows will fall back to using the OEM recovery image or Windows installation media when you refresh your PC.


This tutorial will show you how to set any created custom recovery image you want as the current active recovery image to be used to refresh Windows 10 when you refresh your PC.

You must be signed in as an administrator to be able to set a custom recovery image as active.



Here's How:

1. Open an elevated command prompt.

2. In the elevated command prompt, type the command below, and press Enter. (see screenshot below)

recimg /setcurrent "Full path of recovery image folder"


Note   Note
Substitute Full path of recovery image folder in the command above with the actual full path of the folder that contains the the CustomRefresh.wim file of the created custom recovery image you want to set as the current active recovery image.

For example:

recimg /setcurrent "F:\CustomRecoveryImage\02-19-2015"


3. When finished, you can close the command prompt.

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That's it,
Shawn