How to Do a System Restore When the Computer Won't Boot?

July 30, 2019

How to do a system restore when your Windows 7/8/10 computer won't boot? You can use Windows built in utility or third party backup and restore software to restore your computer when it fails to boot.

What do you need for a system restore?

There are many reasons that can cause computer problems. If your computer are in some serious situation that fails to boot, you can perform a system image restore to recover your computer. How to do a system restore when the computer won't boot?

To be able to perform system image restore, you must create at least one system image backup that is accessible to the computer to be restored. If you cannot even boot your computer into Recovery Environment, you can use a System Repair Disc, Recovery Drive, or Windows installation DVD.

If you don’t have one of these devices, you can create a repair disc on another computer or borrow one from your friends. Note that you cannot mix the Windows versions, namely you can only use Windows 7/8/8.1/10 disc for restoring the corresponding version of Windows system.

How to fix a computer with system image restore?

A system image restore will restore everything in the backup, and you cannot select or exclude individual files to restore. If you determine to perform a system image restore, you can use following the steps:

1. Connect the USB drive or CD/DVD you prepared. Press a specific key to set your computer to boot from the removable device.

2. Windows will load required files from the drive or disc. Then the Install Windows screen appears, and you can click Repair your computer to go into recovery options. There is a small difference between Windows 10/8/8.1 and Windows 7.

3. Click or tap Troubleshoot -> Troubleshoot -> Advanced options -> System Image Recovery.

System Image Recovery

4. You need to log in with the account that has administrator privileges.

5. Click Next to restore computer with the latest system image backup. If you want to restore an older version of backup, click Select a system image and then click Next. Under the next screen, you can also select a backup from share folder over network by clicking Advanced option.

Select Backup

6. Choose whether to format the hard drive or not based on your needs. Then click Next.

Additional Option

7. The next screen will show a summary of this restoring operation. Click Finish to start the system image restore process.


Normally, restoring a system image backup takes a long time. Sometimes, it even fails with an error message. For better performance and convenience, you can use free third party software to perform system restore.

How to restore system with AOMEI Backupper?

The free backup and restore software AOMEI Backupper Standard provides two different ways to restore your system when the computer won't boot. One way is to use AOMEI PXE tool, the other is to use an AOMEI Backupper bootable media, which is able to boot Windows 10/8.1/8/7. To be able to restore system, firstly you need to have prepared a system backup or disk backup before computer fails to boot, and a bootable CD/DVD or USB disk created by AOMEI Backupper. You can also use another computer to create this bootable media.

To restore system:

1. Connect the bootable media to the computer to be restored. Start your computer and press a specific key (usually Del or F2) to boot into BIOS. Switch the bootable media as the first boot option.

Boot Order

2. It will directly boot into the intuitive interface of AOMEI Backupper. Under the "Restore" tab, click "Select Image File" to locate the image backup file that you want to restore. Then click "Next".

Select Image File Winpe

3. Select to restore the entire backup or a part and click Next. If needed, mark the option "Restore system to other location".

Select Entire Backup or Partition

4. The next screen will show a summary of this restoring operation, click "Start Restore" to start the restoring process.

Preview Restore

AOMEI Backupper Professional also supports dissimilar hardware restore. All you need to do is to check the option "Enable Universal Restore" before starting to restore. Then you have learned how to do a system restore when the computer won't boot in two different ways. If you do not mind using third party software, there is no way to still bear the cumbersome and unreliable Windows build-in restore utility.

Tip: Sometimes, our iPhones also meet with the same problem that it won't boot or get into frozen status. At this time, FonePaw iPhone Data Recovery will restore the system and repair your iPhone back to normal status. And then, it also supports to recover the data on iPhone or iPad.