How to uninstall Windows 8 Developer Preview from your computer [Updated]

Windows 8 Developer Preview

If you want to know how to uninstall Windows 8 Developer Preview there are several things you want to know before installing it.

According to Microsoft, you cannot uninstall Windows 8 from a computer that installed on top Windows 7. If you already have installed the operating system in your machine, the only way is to re-install your previous OS is with the installation media, alternatively restore from backup.

Many users may not be happy about this, but keep in mind that Windows 8 is not a finished product just yet, this is only a preview intended for developers, so they can have a glimpse of what is to come, see how Windows 8 works internally, and they can start building applications.

At this stage you are going to find many things that do not work correctly and many other bugs; Microsoft also made this preview release to collect, learn and fix potential problems that may affect users. All this in any way means that a regular user shouldn’t download and test. In my opinion, I think is encouraged to test the new Microsoft’s OS that way they can find and fix the bugs faster, and the final product may also come earlier.

Here are some other notes when installing Windows 8 Developer Preview

Install on:  Windows Developer Preview with developer tools  Windows Developer Preview (32-bit or 64-bit) 
 Windows 7 and Windows Vista  Clean install only  You can keep accounts, files and settings
 Windows XP  Clean install only   You can keep accounts, files and settings

A clean install is supported on all builds. You will only receive the full set of installation options when setup is started in Windows.

Useful Links

Sep. 18, 2011 Update

Steve Sinofsky, Microsoft’s Windows chief, said in a blog post from the official Building Windows 8 site: “We are seeing in the forums that there is a lot of interest in running the Windows 8 Developer Preview in a virtual environment. Our telemetry systems reported that approximately one-third of the early installations are on virtual machines. We apologize for not giving guidance up front on testing the Windows 8 Developer Preview in virtual machines.”

Oct. 6, 2011 Update — Uninstalling Windows 8 Developer Preview and reinstalling Windows 7

Because you cannot rollback a previous version of Windows, if you still need a little bit of extra help, you can follow these steps to uninstall/remove Windows 8 from your computer and reinstall Windows 7:

Warning: Before your start, make sure to backup any important data inside of the hard drive, because reinstalling Windows will delete anything on your computer’s hard drive.

1.  Make sure that your computer is set up to boot from a bootable media — refer to your computer or motherboard’s user manual to do this –, and in this case insert DVD or USB boot drive and reboot with the OS installation files.

2.  Press any key when you are asked to start the installation process.

3.  When the installation process starts, select your regional settings, click Next, and then click Install Now.

4.  Choose the operating system version if you are asked to, click Next; then accept the license terms and click Next.

5.  Click the Custom (advanced) to continue with the process.

6.  In the step: Where do you want to install Windows? You need to delete both the System and Primary partition. To do this, for each partition, click the Drive options (advanced), and then click Delete and OK.

7. When you delete both of the partitions, you are going to be left with one drive labeled: Disk 0 Unallocated Space. Now click Next and Windows 7 begin install, then just follow the on-screen prompts to create a new account, name the PC, create password, set date and time, and network settings. After the installation is completed you can go ahead and install any other software you need.

May. 3, 2012 Update

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 is 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+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and About.me.