Getting Windows Ready Stuck (FIXED): Here’s What You Can Do

Installing OS is a complex task. Users only see a few progress bars as their system goes through the various installation steps. They need to provide some input eg, language selection, time range, keyboard layout, user account name and password, etc. Beyond this, the process is more or less automated and users don’t have to do much.

Under the hood, any OS installation goes through several steps / stages. Often, the progress bar we see, or the messages we receive, may disappear or stay on the screen longer.

Getting Windows Ready Stuck

Getting Windows Ready Stuck

When Windows 10 is installed, or upgraded, the system needs to be restarted several times. On the last part of the installation, after which a user clicks to the desktop, Windows 10 displays the message ‘Getting Windows ready’. This message does not show the progress bar but will show a percentage of progress. The progress may reach 100% but tends to stay on screen, on average, for fifteen to twenty minutes.

That said, this message may stay on your screen for much longer. Reasons why the message is on-screen include much more, but are not limited to;

  • Slower system running older hardware eg, slow disk hard drive.
  • Windows 10 special installation updated to latest version eg 1703 to 2004.
  • Device that is low on installed storage space / C / Windows driver.

If the Preparing Windows message seems to be stuck, try the following solutions.

1. A little patience

The Getting Windows Ready message may remain on the screen for twenty minutes on a good, stable system. If your system is a bit old, it is best to give the OS some time to complete the installation.

Many users have reported that a much longer wait eg, two or three hours, completed the installation and they were able to access their desktop. This is one reason that installing Windows 10 or updating should always be a weekend project.

2. Restart the system

Sometimes the screen pops up the message Preparing Windows. You can force the system to shut down and restart manually but only after a long wait for the message to go away by itself.

Press and hold the power button on your PC to bring it down. Wait a few minutes and then press the power button to kick off the system again.

If you see the Windows ready screen again, wait a while for it to finish. It should eventually take you to your desk.

3. Disconnect external drivers

If you have an external driver connected to your system, disconnect it. You will need to restart your PC (see previous section).

If you have attached an installation disk or if it is a storage driver that you restore, remove it and let the update or installation continue.

4. Run Windows boot repair

Windows installation or upgrades may go wrong. This usually happens if the process has been interrupted (for fear of a clean install), or if you have problems with the installation media (for fear of installing or updating), or if you had apps installed on your desktop. is known to cause problems with updates. (for fear of Windows updates).

To repair it, you should run Windows Startup Repair.

  1. Force shut down the system by holding down the power button.
  2. Connect Windows installation media (usually generated on USB) to your system.
  3. Boot to the installation screen and select the Windows 10 version and the language you want to use.
  4. Click on Repair option.
  5. go to Troubleshoot> Startup Repair.
  6. Run initial repair and boot to your desk.


Progress bars we rarely see when OS is installed correctly. In many cases, while the progress bar is ‘moving’ it means there is nothing wrong. The ‘Getting Windows ready’ screen tends to stay on a certain percentage for a long time which is why users think it is stuck. In most cases, waiting for the filling is usually the best and most reliable solution.

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