You can download the Windows Device Recovery Tool on your PC and use it to fix software problems on your phone. It'll install the latest version of Windows approved for your phone and remove everything else, including your apps, games, texts, call history, music, and photos. Before you use this tool, see if restarting or resetting your phone fixes the problem.
It works on Lumia, LG, HTC One, and HTC 8X phones running Windows Phone 8 or later versions as well as the Alcatel OneTouch Fierce XL, MCJ Madosma, BLU WIN HD and BLU WIN HD LTE devices. For non-Lumia Nokia phones, use the Nokia Software Recovery Tool instead.
Before running the tool, try restarting and resetting your phone to see if that fixes the problem.
If that doesn't work, back up your stuff, then download the tool and use it to reinstall Windows on your phone. The installation process will delete all the content on your phone—including your apps, texts, and photos—so it's important to back up your stuff first if you can.
Some devices let you use reset protection to keep strangers from resetting and reusing your phone without permission. Make sure reset protection is turned off, or you'll need to know the name and password for the primary account on the device to use it. Go to Settings > Updates & security > Find my phone > Reset Protection and select Turn off.
Follow the on-screen prompts to install it, then select Launch application.
Use a USB cable to connect your phone to your PC. If your phone isn't automatically detected after you connect it, disconnect your phone, select My phone was not detected, then follow the on-screen prompts. If your phone still isn't detected, try restarting it while it's connected.
When your phone is detected, select Install software. Installation may take a while, depending on the speed of your Internet connection, and you won't be able to use your phone until it's done.
Yes. When you use this tool on a phone that's running a preview build, it will reinstall the latest version of Windows approved for your phone by its manufacturer. To start getting preview builds again, you'll need to go to Download Windows Insider Preview for phones to download the Windows Insider app on your phone, then follow the steps to install Insider Preview.
Not immediately. Windows 10 backups aren’t compatible with Windows 8 phones.
It is not recommended that you restore a Windows 10 backup to a Windows 8 phone. To avoid Phone Backup Overwrite after switching to Windows 10, you must rename the device. You can do this by going to Settings > System > About and tapping Edit name.
The phone can be reverted back to Windows 8 using the Windows Device Recovery Tool. And if you update your phone to Windows 10 again, you can restore your backup from either a Windows 10 backup or a Windows 8 backup.
Article ID: 12379 - Last Review: Jun 9, 2016 - Revision: 28