Windows 10 version 1803 clean install

How to clean install Windows 10 version 1803 (April 2018 Update)

VIDEO: The best way to get Windows 10 April 2018 Update is doing a clean installation — Here's why and how to do it.

Windows 10 version 1803 (April 2018 Update) is rolling out to compatible PCs starting April 30, 2018, and if you want to avoid problems the best way to upgrade is to do a clean installation.

Although doing an in-place upgrade using Windows Update is the easiest way to install version 1803, you’re likely to come across issues and errors as a result of possible software and driver incompatibility, configuration issues, and more. A clean installation reduces the chances of running into problems because it deletes everything on the hard drive and installs a fresh copy of Windows 10 with the April 2018 Update.

In addition, if you’ve been using the same installation for a long time, a clean install of Windows 10 can help to improve performance, startup times, memory usage, and fix many existing problems.

In this hands-on video, you’ll learn the steps to successfully do a clean installation of Windows 10 version 1803 on your desktop, laptop, or tablet using the Media Creation Tool to create a bootable media.

Important: This video and instructions will help you do a clean installation of the April 2018 Update after it becomes officially available to everyone, not before. Also, you’ll be wiping out everything on your device, as such make sure to make a full backup of your PC and files before proceeding. Windows 10 version 1803 is expected to launch on April 10, but if you can’t wait, you can enroll your device in the Release Preview to download build 17133, which is the final version.

How to do a clean install of Windows 10 version 1803

After creating the USB bootable media, you can proceed to install Windows 10. Here’s how:

  1. Start your PC with the Windows 10 installation media.

  2. Press any key to begin.

  3. Click Next.

  4. Click Install now.

  5. Click the Skip button if you’re reinstalling. (After the installation Windows 10 will re-activate automatically.)

  6. Click on “I accept the license terms”.

  7. Click Next.

  8. Select the option “Custom: Install Windows only (advanced)”.

  9. Select each partition in the hard drive that you want to install Windows 10 and click the Delete button. Usually, the “Drive 0” is the drive that contains all the installation files.

    Warning: Remember that deleting a partition also deletes all data within. Also, it’s not necessary to delete the partitions from a secondary hard drive.
  10. Select the hard drive (Drive 0 Unallocated Space) to install Windows 10.

  11. Click Next.

  12. Select your current region in the first page of the out-of-the-box experience (OOBE) after the installation.

  13. Click Yes.

  14. Select your keyboard layout.

  15. Click Yes.

  16. If you’re not setting a second keyboard layout, click Skip.

  17. If your device is using an Ethernet connection, your PC will connect to the network automatically. Otherwise, if you’re using a wireless connection, you’ll need to set up the connection manually.

  18. Select the Set up for personal use option.

  19. Click Next.

  20. Type your Microsoft account email, phone, or Skype identification.

  21. Click Next.

  22. Type your Microsoft account password.

  23. Click Next.

  24. Click Set up at PIN to create a PIN password.

  25. Click Next. You can always link your phone to your PC using the Settings app.

  26. Click Yes to enable Cortana on your device. (If you want to use the “Hey Cortana” feature, also check the Respond when I say “Hey Cortana” option.)

  27. Select your privacy settings that best suit your needs.

  28. Click Accept.

You can also check this guide that outlines every step to prepare, create a backup, and start with a fresh copy of Windows 10. In the case you want to speed up the install process, you can also do an in-place upgrade using these instructions.

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows expert and the Editor-in-Chief who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He's also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 12 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows, software, and related technologies, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ & Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, and LinkedIn.