Monday, July 22, 2013

Windows 8: Boot Configuration Utilities

Back in the days of Windows NT there was a BOOT.INI file that was used for controlling which OS Windows would load and what start-up options would be used.

In Windows Vista, Microsoft replaced the older BOOT.INI file with a new architecture called the Boot Configuration Data (BCD) store.

The only time you really want to modify the BCD store is if you want to change the Windows startup options for diagnostic reasons, or if there's a need to multi-boot the system with more then one OS (e.g. Windows, Linux, etc.)
Warning: Use extreme caution when using any of these tools as they can easily make the system unbootable by changing the wrong configuration setting.
Below is a list of built-in utilities for managing the BCD store:
  • MSCONFIG.EXE (A GUI tool for modifying the BCD store)
  • BCDEDIT.EXE (A command line tool for modifying the BCD store)
  • BCDBOOT.EXE (A command line tool for managing system partition files)

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