This article explains step-by-step solutions that you can use to fix your computer’s UEFI boot for these Windows versions: Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 and Windows 10.

This how-to article is applicable for PCs with UEFI/EFI that have either Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 installed.

UEFI (EFI) is the updated version of BIOS, which is commonly found on older models of computers. Major PC manufacturers – Dell, HP, Acer, Asus and so on – no longer ship PCs with BIOS, but with UEFI/EFI instead.

Most computers with UEFI/EFI can provide legacy support for BIOS. In this kind of example, if you enable legacy support, you could install Windows 7, Windows Vista or Windows XP on a computer that has UEFI/EFI and not BIOS.

ThinkPad UEFI-Legacy Boot Priority

ThinkPad UEFI-Legacy Boot Priority

PCs with Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 usually have UEFI/EFI installed and not BIOS, but PCs with Windows 7 will use the UEFI/EFI set with Legacy mode active.

Fix UEFI Boot with Easy Recovery Essentials

Easy Recovery Essentials is our EFI and UEFI repair CD/DVD/USB for Windows that can be used to fix your computer.

Easy Recovery Essentials can correct errors in the UEFI/EFI firmware configuration.

Easy Recovery Essentials can fix many errors such as this automatically using its built-in Automated Repair option. EasyRE is currently available for Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8 and can be downloaded and created on any PC.

  1. Download Easy Recovery Essentials. Make sure to note your Windows version (XP, Vista, 7 or 8) before you download EasyRE. This guide can help you identify what version of Windows you have installed.
  2. Burn the image. Follow these instructions on how to burn the bootable ISO image very carefully, as making a bootable CD can be tricky! Alternatively, these instructions explain how to create a bootable EasyRE recovery USB stick/drive.
  3. Boot up your PC from the Easy Recovery Essentials CD or USB you created.
  4. Once EasyRE is running, choose the “Automated Repair” option and click Continue.
    EasyRE Home

    Choose “Automated Repair” in Easy Recovery Essentials

  5. After EasyRE scans your computer’s drives, identify and select the drive letter for your Windows installation from the list, and then click on the Automated Repair button to begin.
    EasyRE displays a list of found Windows operating systems

    Choose the drive associated with the Windows installation you’re trying to repair.

  6. Easy Recovery Essentials will start analyzing the selected drive for problems. EasyRE will test for and attempt to automatically correct errors with the disk, partition, bootsector, filesystem, bootloader, and registry. No intervention is required, as EasyRE’s repair is fully automated:
    EasyRE: Automated Repair

    Easy Recovery Essentials searches for errors and makes corrections to the selected Windows installation.

  7. Once the process is complete, EasyRE will report its findings. Click on the Restart button to reboot your PC and test the changes.
  8. The “any UEFI boot error” error should now be fixed as your PC begins to load:
    EasyRE: Automated Repair

    Windows, booting up successfully.

You can download Easy Recovery Essentials from here.

Fix UEFI Boot in Windows 7

The step-by-step instructions for fixing the UEFI/EFI boot on a Windows 7 system are very similar to those of Windows 8/8.1:

Windows 7 can’t be installed if your computer’s UEFI/EFI mode is set as active and not in Legacy mode. Legacy mode allows your computer to boot Windows 7.

If your computer model is new and has UEFI/EFI installed, but you have Windows 7 installed, it’s most likely that you’re running UEFI/EFI as Legacy.

Follow the instructions from prerequisites below before you start.

Prerequisites

Before you start using the bootrec or the diskpart command to fix the bootloader of your Windows 7 system, first you must determine that UEFI/EFI loads with the Legacy mode active.

Follow these steps:

  1. Restart your computer
  2. Press the necessary key to open UEFI/EFI. The key depends on your PC manufacturer and PC model.Most common keys are: F2, F8, F12, Del. Esc is also an option.
  3. Once inside the UEFI/EFI setup menu, search for Secure Boot.This is usually found at any of the following tabs: Boot, Authentication or Security.
  4. Make sure Secure Boot is either Disabled or Off
  5. Save these settings and exit the UEFI/EFI setup menu
Secure Boot [Enabled] on a Dell computer

Secure Boot [Enabled] on a Dell computer

Secure Boot [Enabled] on a HP computer

Secure Boot [Enabled] on a HP computer

Fix #1: Use bootrec

To use the bootrec utility and fix the boot error of your Windows 7 system, follow these steps:

If you don’t have the Windows 7 installation CD/DVD to run Command Prompt, go to Fix UEFI Boot with Easy Recovery Essentials.

  1. Insert the original Windows 7 installation CD/DVD and boot from it
  2. Select a language, keyboard and click Next
  3. Select the operating list (Windows 7) from the list and click Next
  4. At the System Recovery Options screen, click Command Prompt
    Windows 7 System Recovery Options Screen

    Windows 7 System Recovery Options Screen

  5. Type:
    bootrec /fixmbr
  6. Press Enter
  7. Type:
    bootrec /fixboot
  8. Press Enter
  9. Type:
    bootrec /ScanOs
  10. Press Enter
  11. Type:
    bootrec /rebuildBcd
  12. Press Enter
  13. Remove the installation CD/DVD, type exit, press Enter and restart your computer
Windows 7 bootrec utility results screen

Windows 7 bootrec utility results screen

If the bootrec utility doesn’t fix the boot error, follow Fix #2: Use diskpart.

Fix #2: Use bootsect

Windows Setup CD/DVD Required!
Some of the solutions below require the use of the Microsoft Windows setup CD or DVD. If your PC did not come with a Windows installation disc or if you no longer have your Windows setup media, you can use Easy Recovery Essentials for Windows instead. EasyRE will automatically find and fix many problems, and can also be used to solve this problem with the directions below.

Follow these steps to run diskpart to repair the boot sector code of the Windows 7 installation:

  1. Follow the steps from Fix #1: Use bootrec until you reach Command Prompt
  2. Type:
    bootsect /nt60 SYS /mbr
  3. Press Enter
  4. Remove the Windows 7 installation CD/DVD from the disc tray, type exit in Command Prompt and press Enter
  5. Restart your computer
Windows 7 bootsect utility results screen

Windows 7 bootsect utility results screen

Fix UEFI Boot in Windows 8, 8.1 or 10

To fix the UEFI bootloader on a Windows 8, Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 system, you can follow these options:

Fix #1: Use diskpart

If the UEFI partition on your computer doesn’t have a drive letter assigned, this may be the primary cause of your computer’s boot error.

A common is to use the diskpart utility (available on the Windows 8/8.1/10 recovery disc/USB) to make sure the UEFI partition has a letter assigned to it. If it doesn’t, you’ll assign it a letter.

Windows Setup CD/DVD Required!
Some of the solutions below require the use of the Microsoft Windows setup CD or DVD. If your PC did not come with a Windows installation disc or if you no longer have your Windows setup media, you can use Easy Recovery Essentials for Windows instead. EasyRE will automatically find and fix many problems, and can also be used to solve this problem with the directions below.

The instructions you need to follow are:

  1. Insert your original Windows 8/8.1/10 installation disc or installation USB
  2. Boot from the disc or the USB
  3. At the Install now screen, click Repair your computer or press R
    Windows 8 Repair Your Computer Menu

    Windows 8 Repair Your Computer Menu

  4. Click Troubleshoot
  5. Click Advanced options
  6. Click Command Prompt
  7. When Command Prompt has finished loading, type:
    diskpart
  8. Press Enter
  9. The diskpart utility should now be loaded:
    DISKPART>
  10. Type:
    sel disk 0
  11. Press Enter
  12. Wait for the confirmation message:
    Disk 0 is now the selected disk.
  13. Type:
    list vol
  14. Press Enter
  15. diskpart will now show the full list of volumes available on your PCCommand Prompt: list disk
  16. Find the UEFI volume from the list. This usually has “BOOT” mentioned on the Label column, “System” on the Info column. The Fs column might FAT32 specified.For our example, in the next steps, our UEFI partition will be on Volume 2.
  17. Type:
    sel vol 2
  18. Press Enter
  19. Type:
    assign letter=G:

    Where G: should be a unique drive letter. It can’t be already used, e.g. C:\, D:\

  20. Press Enter
  21. Wait for the confirmation message:
    DiskPart successfully assigned the drive letter or mount point.
  22. Type:
    exit
  23. Press Enter
  24. Type:
    cd /d G:\EFI\Microsoft\Boot\

    Where G: is the drive letter you’ve assigned to your UEFI partition a few steps back.
    If the \EFI\Microsoft\Boot\ folder doesn’t exist (the error message will be “The system cannot find the path specified”), you can run the same command on alternative paths:

    cd /d G:\Boot\

    or

    cd /d G:\ESD\Windows\EFI\Microsoft\Boot\

    Remember to replace G: with the UEFI’s partition letter.

  25. Type the bootrec command:
    bootrec /fixboot
  26. Press Enter
  27. For backup purposes, backup the BCD record of your computer like this:
    ren BCD BCD.bak
  28. Recreate the BCD using the bcdboot command:
    Bcdboot C:\Windows /l en-us /s x: /f ALL

    Where C:\ is the letter of the drive where Windows 8, Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 is installed on.
    The /l en-us parameter is used for localization: US. You can use ln /en-gb for UK localization.

  29. Press Enter
  30. You can also run this command too:
    bootrec /rebuildbcd
  31. Press Enter
  32. Type exit in Command Prompt
  33. Restart your computer
  34. Your Windows 8/8.1/10 should now boot again
Windows 8 bootrec utility results screen

Windows 8 bootrec utility results screen

Fix #2: Use Automatic Repair

The built-in Automatic Repair utility, available on the Windows 8, Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 disc, might fix errors with the UEFI bootloader of your computer.

In most cases, Fix #1: Use diskpart works better than Fix #2.

Windows Setup CD/DVD Required!
Some of the solutions below require the use of the Microsoft Windows setup CD or DVD. If your PC did not come with a Windows installation disc or if you no longer have your Windows setup media, you can use Easy Recovery Essentials for Windows instead. EasyRE will automatically find and fix many problems, and can also be used to solve this problem with the directions below.

The instructions to run Automatic Repair are:

  1. Insert the Windows 8/8.1/10 installation disc or USB
  2. Restart your computer and boot from disc/USB
  3. At the Install Now screen, click Repair your computer
  4. At the Choose an option screen, click Troubleshoot
  5. Click Automatic Repair
  6. Choose an account from the list to continue, at the Automatic Repair screen
  7. Wait for the process to finish
Windows 8 recovery options screen

Windows 8 recovery options screen

More Information

Linked Entries

Support Links

Applicable Systems

This Windows-related knowledgebase article applies to the following operating systems:

  • Windows 7 (all editions)
  • Windows 8 (all editions)
  • Windows 8.1 (all editions)
  • Windows 10 (all editions)

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