Partition Recovery™
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An expert tool for recovering lost partitions

How to deal with Insert your Windows installation or recovery media errror?

Here you will find out:

  • when you can face the "Insert your Windows installation or recovery media" message
  • how to fix this issue
  • how DiskInternals Partition Recovery can help you

Are you ready? Let's read!

Why am I seeing the "Insert your Windows installation or recovery media" error?

You will most likely encounter several error messages when using Windows 10. Fortunately, there’s a way to deal with any Windows error message.

If you are currently facing the “Insert your Windows installation or recovery media” message while trying to refresh/reset your Windows computer, the troubleshooting tricks below should help you out.

How to fix this error

Method 1: Run System File Checker

The “Reset” utility is built into Windows, so resetting a Windows PC doesn’t necessarily require an external connection (or using installation media). However, when malware or a virus attacks your PC, it damages, encrypts, or deletes essential files that make your computer function as it;s supposed to. This in turn can lead to you seeing the "Insert your Windows installation or recovery media” error. So, Run an SFC scan and fix Windows core files, which may help to fix this error. SFC scan runs through Command Prompt; and you will need to have admin access on the computer to run it.


  • Right-click on "Start".
  • Click on "Command Prompt (Admin)".
  • Type the following command into the terminal: SFC /scannow and hit the Enter key.
  • Wait for the scan to complete. You may also need to run a DISM scan, explained below.

Method 2: Run Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool

DISM is a command-line utility that only runs with admin privileges. It is designed to fix or mount Windows images or modify Windows installation media. The steps below explain how to run the DISM command.

  • 1. Launch Command Prompt as an admin.
  • 2. Type the following commands in order, and remember to press Enter after entering each one:
  • 3. This process may take some time.

Method 3: Use the Advanced Recovery menu to reset this PC

To launch Windows’ Advanced Recovery menu, which provides you with an option to reset your computer, follow the steps below:

  • 1. Reboot your PC multiple times in a row: shut down the computer and reboot, then while still rebooting, press and hold down the power button to force it to shut down again, and then reboot it (repeat this process until the Recovery menu comes up.
  • 2. Click Troubleshoot >>> Reset this PC, and follow the on-screen prompts to complete the reset process.

Method 4: Reinstall Windows 10

Reinstalling Windows is one of the most reliable ways of fixing most Windows errors. However, this action will delete many of your important files, and there will be no means of getting them back. So before you do this, perform a comprehensive backup of your PC files by creating a disk image using DiskInternals Partition Recovery.

How to use DiskInternals Partition Recovery to create a disk image

You’ll need to remove the hard drive on the problematic computer and connect it to another computer. Afterward, download and install DiskInternals Partition Recovery on the new computer, and launch the application.

DiskInternals Partition Recovery is primarily for data recovery, and will help get back all lost or deleted files from your hard drive in four simple steps. After the lost/deleted data and files have been recovered, you can then go on to create a disk image to save everything on your hard drive.

Once you have completed the steps (that is, recovering the lost files and creating a disk image), remove the hard drive, reconnect it to the old (problematic) computer, and reinstall Windows.

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