Windows 11 allows you to go back to Windows 10 or revert back to Windows 10. Microsoft offers the ‘Go Back to previous version’ functionality across different operating systems. This feature is also available on a Windows 11 computer. The intent is to provide an option to users who are not prepared yet to work on the Windows 11 operating system. To go back to previous version of Windows 10 from Windows 11, you will need to:
- you will need to access the System applet from within Control panel.
- Within system, choose the Recovery option
- Withing recovery, choose the option of ‘Go Back’. If available, this option will take you back to Windows 10.
However, there is a catch. You can go back to Windows 10 from Windows 10 within 10 days of the update from Windows 10 to Windows 11. Outside 10 days, you cannot go back to Windows 10 from the Windows 11 computer through the System—>Recovery program.
Does that mean that you will not be able to use Windows 10 after 10 days of updating to Windows 11?
Well, yes, you cannot return from Windows 11 to Windows 10 through the Windows Update program or the System recovery option after 10 days of the upgrade. During these 10 days, however, you may extend the time period for reverting back to Windows 10. Old Windows 10 configuration and operating system data is stored on your computer in the Windows.old folder. As longs as you can see the folder on C:\ or the drive on which you installed Windows, you can extend the reversion period of 10 days from Windows 11 to Windows 10. The default setting of 10 days can be extended up to 60 days, using the following command:
DISM /Online /Set-OSUninstallWindow /Value:60
To change the reversion period of 10 days to 30 days, please use the following command using administrative privileges:
DISM /Online /Set-OSUninstallWindow /Value:30
You will be unable to extend the reversion period on your Windows 11 computer if the Windows.old folder has been automatically deleted by Windows 11 operating system.
However, nothing stops you from doing a clean install of Windows 10 on your computer. You can perform a fresh install of Windows 10 on a Windows 11 computer that does not allow going back to Windows 10. Use the Microsoft’s ‘Media Creation Tool’ to create a bootable USB drive that will allow you to install fresh copy of Windows 10 on your computer. You will reset your user profile during the course of Windows 10 installation. So, please do ensure that you have backed up your user profile data completely. The backed up data may come handy in terms of restoring user specific data later.
Why do you want to go back to Windows 10?
3 out of 4 Windows 11 users that wish to go back to Windows 10 cite a single reason. Inability to get accustomed to the new Windows 11 Start menu and the new taskbar is the biggest reason for new Windows 11 users to opt for Windows 10 over Windows 11. Going back to Windows 10 from Windows 11 is more because of user interface issues than anything else. In terms of performance, there is nothing that puts Windows 11 below par than Windows 10 performance. And, Windows 11 is definitely more futuristic as an operating system. Plus, Windows 11 is constantly evolving and being tweaked by the Microsoft development team. There is nothing on record to state that the Windows 11 Start menu and taskbar won’t allow Windows 11 users any scope of customization at a later date.
If user interface, the new Start menu and the new taskbar are the only Windows 11 concern areas for you, we do have a few options for you. These options can improve your user experience on Windows 11. And, these apps can help boost productivity because of seamless backward compatibility between Windows 11 and the older styled Start menu and Windows taskbar options.
- Choose a third party app to restore the Windows Start button menu to work like Windows 10, or Windows 8 or Windows 7 start menu. The same app allows you to move the Windows 11 taskbar from the center of the screen to either side of the screen. Start11 is a third party paid app. It has been found to be working appropriately in restoring Start menu and taskbar on a Windows 11 computer to the Windows 10 types. The cost of the app is $5.99. It, definitely, will save time and money should you decide to clean install the Windows 10 over Windows 11 on your computer that has been recently updated to the Windows 11 computer.
- StartAllBack is another third party that costs $4.99. This app allows you to change the Windows 11 start menu to a Windows 7 styled start menu. In terms of taskbar functionality, the StartAllBack allows you to move the Windows 11 taskbar around and even ungroup the taskbar icons.
- Explorer Patch is another third party executable app. This app can be downloaded from its GitHub page. It works exclusively on streamlining the taskbar icons and allows you to ungroup the taskbar icons. The app is free of cost. If you are looking to revert from Windows 11 to Windows 10 due to taskbar issues, the Explorer Patch should come in handy for remediating the situation for you.
After updating to Windows 11 from Windows 10 through the Windows Update program, you can go back to Windows 10 inside 10 days of the upgrade from within the System —–> Recovery options. Post expiration of the 10 days period, you may perform a clean install of Windows 10 over Windows 11 operating system. Or, you may chose to augment the functionality of Windows 11 computer using third party apps on the Windows 11 computer.
You may also like to read the following related Windows 11 content:
- Desktop Window Manager is using a lot of memory on Windows 11
- Ungroup Taskbar icons on Windows 11
- Improve File Explorer speed on Windows 11
- Restore Windows 11 taskbar and Start to Windows 10 type
- Windows 11 widgets not working
- How to remove the mica effect from Windows 11
Helen is a geeky nerd who seeks to find and fix tech gaps in the latest gadgets. She is always on the lookout for resolving technical queries of users, and is an avid writer on technical subjects.