Getting Windows ready. Don’t turn off your PC [Fixed]

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
Troubleshooting Expert
Passionate about all elements related to Windows and combined with his innate curiosity, Ivan has delved deep into understanding this operating system, with a specialization in drivers and driver troubleshooting. When he's not tackling... Read more
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  • When you get stuck on a Getting Windows ready. Don't turn off your PC screen, you should wait for a couple of hours.
  • Computers get stuck on Getting Windows ready after performing updates or after a restart.
  • When Windows 10 is stuck on Getting Windows ready, the system troubleshooters can't be accessed.
  • So a Startup Repair or a clean install are among the few fixes you can try.
Windows install issues
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The install process of Windows gradually becomes easier with every new system introduction. Most of us remember the lengthy installation procedure of XP, with all the buzz about drivers and initial setup. Luckily, that’s not the case with Windows 10.

But, there’s good reasoning why users detest oversimplified installation processes. Firstly, most of your drivers are auto-installed through the setup.

Secondly, there’s something that may go wrong with the installation. And when that happens, you may run back to Windows 7 or even good old Windows XP.

One of the problems that troubled a lot of users is that the screen gets stuck on the following message: Getting Windows ready. Don’t turn off your computer.

The estimated waiting time is around 5 minutes or so. However, some users were waiting for ages.

There are various issues that can occur with Windows updates, and in this article, we’re going to focus on the following problems:

  • Getting Windows ready infinite loop/ update loop/ boot loop/ restarting loop – Many users reported that they are stuck in a restart loop that prevents them from accessing Windows.
  • Getting Windows ready after a restart – This issue is most likely caused by an incomplete update, and Windows will try to finish its installation every time you restart your PC.
  • Getting Windows ready working on updates – This is a variation of this message that appears usually after a major Windows update. To fix this issue, be sure to try some of the solutions from this article.
  • Getting Windows ready stuck after update – In certain cases, this issue can appear after installing an update. Sometimes the installation process isn’t finished and that can cause this message to appear.

It’s hard to address this issue, though, since you’re unable to reach your system and perform troubleshooting. Here are some workarounds you can try out below.

How to fix Windows 10 stuck on Getting Windows ready?

  1. Just wait [2 – 3 hours]
  2. Hard shut down your PC
  3. Perform a Startup Repair
  4. Perform a clean reinstallation
  5. Uninstall recently installed software

1. Just wait

getting windows ready

Yes, that’s actually what some of Microsoft’s support technicians advise. For no real reason, some users need to wait longer than others until this screen completes what it’s doing.

We advise you to wait no more than 2-3 hours before you cancel.


2. Hard shut down your PC

Getting Windows ready after restart

After some time, you should hard shut down your PC. Keep in mind that this isn’t as dangerous as some would say. The procedure may be finished after a while, but the screen will remain in an idle state.

The best way to determine the right time for the hard restart/shutdown is to look at the HDD activity lamp. If the lamp isn’t blinking, that means that the procedure is over and you should shut down your PC.

If the system starts as intended, you should be good to go. If that’s not the case, your only viable option is to start the reinstallation procedure from scratch.

But, this time we advise you to perform a clean reinstall. There’s a grave danger that your system won’t perform like it’s supposed to after this kind of failure.


3. Perform a Startup Repair

perform a startup repair
  1. Hold the Shift key down and press the Power button at the same time.
  2. Continue holding the Shift key, while the machine is powering on.
  3. When the PC restarts, you’ll see a screen with a few options. Click Troubleshoot.
  4. Click on Advanced options.
  5. In the Advanced options menu, choose Startup Repair.
  6. In the Startup Repair screen, choose an account. You’ll need an account with Administrator privileges to continue.
  7. After entering the password, click Continue.
  8. Wait for the process to finish.
  9. Restart your PC afterward.

4. Perform a clean reinstallation

Fix Getting windows ready. Don’t turn off your computer

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A clean reinstallation should get you going. Make sure you back up sensitive data from the system partition and have your license key ready because otherwise, you’ll be in a lot of trouble.

Moreover, the reinstallation process is not as lengthy and you should be able to finish it in less than one hour or so, including driver check-up and customization of the system to your liking.

To perform a clean installation of Windows 10, you’ll need to create a Windows 10 installation media using the Media Creation Tool. Since you can’t access your PC, you’ll have to create installation media on another PC. After doing that you need to follow these steps:

  1. Connect the Windows 10 installation media to your PC and boot from it. Keep in mind that you might have to press the appropriate key or change your boot priority in BIOS in order to boot from Windows 10 installation media.
  2. Choose the desired language and click on Next.
  3. Click on Install Now and follow the instructions on your screen. Keep in mind that clean install will remove all files from the selected drive, so be sure to back up important files beforehand.

In addition, you must select the correct drive in order to perform a clean install. If you accidentally select the wrong drive, you’ll remove all files from that drive, so be extra cautious.

After the setup process is completed, the problem should be completely resolved. If you’re unsure how to perform a clean reinstallation, this guide will provide you with a detailed explanation.

Since clean install can be a complicated procedure, many users are suggesting resetting Windows 10 instead.

To do that, you need to do the following:

  1. Follow Steps 1 and 2 from above.
  2. Now click on Repair your computer.
  3. Select Troubleshoot > Reset this PC > Remove everything.
  4. Select your Windows installation and choose Only the drive where Windows is installed > Just remove my files.
  5. Now click on the Reset button to start resetting your Windows 10 installation.

Both reset and clean install will remove all files from your system drive and reinstall Windows 10, so feel free to use any of these methods.


Need to reset your Windows 10 PC? Do it effortlessly using our step-by-step guide.


5. Uninstall recently installed software

uninstall recently installed software

If your Windows update process went smoothly prior to installing particular software on your computer, then we may have found the culprit. If the respective software solutions are not fully compatible with the latest Windows 10 OS version, you may encounter update errors.

So, before downloading any software on your PC, make sure it’s fully compatible with your OS.

In this case, use the power button to turn off your computer, power it back on, and uninstall any recently installed apps and programs. Then restart your machine and check for updates again.

We certainly hope this will help you upgrade to the latest Windows edition and unblock the computer stuck on getting windows ready.

If you have any comments or questions about your update experience, make sure to post them below.

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • According to Microsoft, some users need to wait longer than others until the Getting Windows ready screen completes. Our recommendation would be to wait no more than 2-3 hours before you cancel.

  • You can try to hard shut down your PC or consider performing a clean reinstallation from an installation media. See more useful steps in our full guide.

  • Some PCs get stuck on the restart sequence for a long period of time (either the boot is slow, or the restart process freezes completely). Check out this complete troubleshooting guide for things you can try when this occurs.

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