How to Reset Your Entire Network in Windows 10 and Start From Scratch

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If you’re suffering network problems in Windows 10 that you just can’t seem to fix, the Windows 10 Anniversary Update now includes a feature that lets you reset your network back to how it was when you first installed Windows.

Resetting your network really should be used as a last resort in your troubleshooting process. Before trying it, you should try some basic fixes first. Running the built-in network troubleshooter can often solve your problems, or at least point you toward steps you can take that might help. Windows also includes some good command line utilities that can help you figure out where your problem lies. But if all else fails, or you’d just like to take your network back to the beginning, resetting your network might help.

When you reset your network, Windows will forget your Ethernet network, along with all your Wi-Fi networks and passwords. It will also forget additional connections, such as VPN connections or virtual switches, that you’ve created. Resetting will disable and then reinstall all your network adapters and set other networking components back to their original settings. You’ll even have to run through the questions you saw when you first installed Windows where you select whether you want your PC to be discoverable on the network.

Once you’ve exhausted your other troubleshooting efforts, resetting the network is easy. Open Windows Settings by pressing Start and clicking the Settings button (or just by pressing Windows+I on your keyboard). On the Windows Settings screen, click “Network & Internet.”

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On the “Network & Internet” page, select the “Status” tab on the left and then, on the right, scroll down and click the “Network reset” link.

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The “Network reset” screen warns you about what will happen when your network is reset and also lets you know that a restart will be necessary. Click the “Reset now” button to reset the network and restart your PC.

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When asked to confirm the network reset, click the “Yes” button.

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And that’s all there is to it. After restarting your PC, Windows will walk you through setting up your network. Again, resetting your network should really be a last resort kind of thing. But if all your other troubleshooting efforts have failed, a full reset might be just the answer.

Walter Glenn is a long time computer geek and tech writer. Though he's mostly a Windows and gadget guy, he has a fondness for anything tech. You can follow him on Facebook and Twitter.