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How to repair the EFI Bootloader in Windows 8 - fixedByVonnie

How to repair the EFI Bootloader in Windows 8

Are you hungry right now?


Then this analogy will make sense because I’m going to reference my favorite sandwich of all time: A Prosciutto, Soppressata, Italian hero with Banana peppers, fresh mozzarella and oregano.

Think of EFI like the palatable center of my Italian sandwich.  Your system board is the bottom part of the roll and the OS, Windows 8, is the top half.

EFI, short for Extensible Firmware Interface, forms a delicious layer of protection against pernicious badware (Rootkits anyone?) by requiring valid digital signatures from the bootloader.  It also replaces the antiquated Master Boot Record (MBR) with the modern GUID Partition Table (GPT) so your computer can stop ignoring hard disks larger than 2TB.

The bootloader is the program that “kicks off the show”.

After the PC finishes a sequence of hardware health checks known as a Power On Self Test (POST), the bootloader enters the scene and galvanizes the OS.

But what happens when the computer fails to boot?  What do we do when the bootloader becomes damaged and the OS refuses to obey the ordinance to start?

The example I adduced above is a good reason to have a Windows 8 USB recovery drive on hand.  If you don’t have that, see if you can boot to the original Windows 8 DVD that came with the system.  If you can’t find that either then take a breath, stay composed and get Easy Recovery Essentials.

EasyRE is a great utility because it automatically detects and repairs common problems with the bootloader, BOOTMGR and winload.exe.  The only draw back is that it costs between $20 and $40 depending on your flavorof Windows.  You can view the 4 minute Youtube demo to see if it’s worth it but first I want to show you something that might fix your problem for free…

The fix

Start up your dilapidated computer with the USB or DVD Windows 8 recovery media in the system.  You want to get to the Advanced options screen so you can open the beloved command prompt.

When the computer boots off the recovery media, pick the Troubleshoot option

Windows 8 Advanced Startup Troubleshoot

Then choose Advanced Options

Windows 8 Advanced Options

and head on over to the Command Prompt.

Windows 8 Advanced options Command Prompt

The computer should reboot and then ask you for the account.  Click your account to continue.

Windows 8 Command Prompt Account

Then login to get started

Windows 8 Command Prompt Account Login

We’re going to use the built in partitioning tool called diskpart to confirm that:

  1. We have all the right partitions
  2. EFI partition is formatted correctly.

In the black screen that looks like a dark abyss, type:


and enter this command:

sel disk 0

Now that the first disk is selected we need to view all the partitions

list vol

Windows 8 diskpart

Verify that the EFI partition is using the FAT32 file system then select the volume and assign a drive letter to it.

Since i’m using Windows 8 from a VirtualBox image you won’t see the FAT32 partition on the screenshot above; but on yours you can select it by noting the Volume Number.

1. Assign the Drive Letter

Let’s say your EFI partition is on Volume 3, the next thing you would type is:

sel vol 3

Then assign an arbitrary drive letter to the parition.  Let’s use v.

assign letter=v:

You should see a message saying: DiskPart successfully assigned the drive letter or mount point.

Exit the diskpart tool by typing:


You should still be in the command prompt but outside of the DISKPART> prompt.

2. Repair the Boot Record

We need to repair the boot record.  We can pull that off like so:

cd /d v:\EFI\Microsoft\Boot\
bootrec /fixboot

The CD command tells the command line interpreter to change the directory to the volume label that has the EFI boot record.

Then the bootrec /fixboot command attempts to repair the selected volume.

Alright, still with me?

3. Rebuild the BCD store

Now we need to recreate the Boot Configuration Data (BCD) store, so let’s backup the existing store first


ren BCD BCD.old

Now that we backed it up, let’s recreate the BCD store:

bcdboot c:\Windows /l en-us /s v: /f ALL

BCDBoot is little tool that lets you manage the system partition files.  In plain english, this command says:

Hey Windows, I’m going to use C:\Windows as the source for copying all my boot-environment files and I’m going to use the English locale and select the volume letter that begins with v:  

The /f ALL thingy updates all the BIOS settings.

Now remove the recovery media and reboot and you should be all set.


Connect with Vonnie on Twitter

Posted in Desktops, Hardware, How To, Laptops, Security, Windows 8, Windows 8.1
  • Kuhmo KurculjaVEVO

    No bootrec for me in EFI partition… Laptop is toshiba, and i upgraded to W8.1

    • Hmm, have you tried Easy Recovery Essentials?

      • Then this analogy will make sense because I’m going to reference my favorite sandwich of all time: A Prosciutto, Soppressata, Italian hero with Banana peppers, fresh mozzarella and oregano.

  • Aleks

    Vonnie words cannot describe my appreciation. But THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU

  • duetto

    When you say to use:

    cd /d v:EFIMicrosoftBoot

    what is the /d letter? Where the system is installed or the recovery disk? Because I’ve different letters and it says to me:

    The system cannot find the path specified

    • niceprice

      The /d is actually just a flag telling the cd command it is allowed to change to another drive. It doesn’t represent any drive or directory.

      The reason it cannot find the specified path is either because Boot is located somewhere else, or simply because it doesn’t exist. Mine was located at: v:EFIBoot . You could try with that; or try to navigate through the drive manually to see if the directory exists. If your’e not already familiar with the cd and the dir commands you may check out a cmd tutorial. This one should do it for this purpose: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NAciFdtSkuc

  • Cosimo

    ty very much!

  • Thanks …

    this is helpful.

  • Vishal Khedkar


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  • Terry Gaitskell


  • Bryan Ewbank

    Thank you for the detailed steps herein. It wasn’t enough for me to see “use DISKPART to name the unnamed partition”. The details were GREAT!

    You can use a “recovery usb drive” from another PC if you can’t locate your Win8 boot disk (yeah, I was desperate).

    * create it on a working PC (control panel, search for “recovery”)
    * plug it into a bootable USB port of broken PC and it should reboot
    * open an administrator command prompt – not a regular command prompt

    * DISKPART …

    * CD

    * BCDBOOT …

  • Pwned-Gadgets

    Hi there. Sorry to bring up a query from this 2 month or so old thread but I I am having problems booting my Windows 8.1 laptop. I have keenly followed the steps in this thread but I am unable to proceed from the step where you state “Verify that the EFI partition is using the FAT32 file system then select the volume and assign a drive letter to it”. The problem is that I do not have any FAT32 partition and what i see is exactly as per your picture showing the partitions even though I am not running windows natively and not in virtual machine. Please how do I proceed from there?

    • DasLicht

      same here ! I don’t have that EFI Partition either , any solution?

    • vengeance1020

      Does your laptop have a UEFI BIOS? If not then the EFI partition would not exist.

  • Irman

    Thanks so much! This really helps!

  • Angel Smilenct

    Do you have any ideal why my advanced options donot have a command prompt? thx

  • daniel

    A google search led me to your post. Totally worked on a laptop I was helping to fix. Thanks so much!!

  • Ye Chenchao

    It works!!! Thank you so much!!!

  • Stelios Skiathitis

    Something happened to my laptop (toshiba satellite), maybe a virus infection, and after last restart the pc is not booting to windows. After the boot logo is shown the screen turns to blank and windows 8 is not loading. I tried to system restore from hidden partition (turning on pc by pressing 0 key), but after please wait message is shown… system turns again to blank screen and nothing happens. I’m stuck! Any solution anybody…

    • Selim Acar

      It is most probable that the boot sector is damaged. I have the same problem. After the boot logo I observed that windows tries to read from the hdd periodically which not succeeds. After waiting for about 5 minutes windows shows an error message very short and restarts the laptop. You may need a new hard drive and I would suggest to buy an SSD.

  • Milan G.

    this doesnt work, all its is a crap.

    also path —- cd /d v:EFIMicrosoftBoot —-doesnt exist.

    • niceprice

      My Boot directory was actually located at v:EFIBoot

    • Christopher Booker

      U are dead wrong… Multiple people have confirmed this working includin myself ..I made a mistake the first time… Second I’m on my CPU now..is it the fix or the user? U should apologize to the op

    • Christopher Booker

      Also… U have to create the path by assigning the letter in disk part after determining which partition holds the efi boot

  • niceprice

    Works great! Thank you!

  • Jeremie

    Thanks U the Man…. it works perfectly….” to make it work all you need to do is follow the steps as shown above” Thx again

  • Pranav Desai

    Thanks! Worked perfectly for me!

  • trevor210

    worked like a champ!!

    • Yes! I love it when stuff works. Have a good one Trevor.

      • Christopher Booker

        Hey von…thanks for the tut
        ..this is the closest I’ve been to solving my problem…however is there some sort of output or verification in cmd I can loook for ?

  • eaglepowerguy

    Thank you so much! What a blessing your walkthrough was. I deleted the Windows boot manager because there were 2 of them in the bios but that rendered Windows 8.1 unbootable. I first ran Refresh in the advanced repair options from booting from a Windows 8.1 DVD. That restored the Windows boot manager in the bios but still couldn’t boot into Windows. After following your walk through it worked and I don’t have to reinstall Windows 8.1.

    • Eagle, so glad you pulled this off! Re-installing Windows 8.1 is a freggin’ pain

  • Gargarito

    Thanks a lot. This helped me rebuild my BCD store after wiping it out using bcdedit.

  • david

    Thank you. I solved my problem.

    I installed ubuntu 12.04 (and grub) on windows 8 (EFI). I used ubuntu for a while and then i erased the ubuntu partitions. After that my pc didn’t boot Windows 8.
    I follow you instructions and i solved the problem.

    I just want to say that in this command:
    bcdboot c:Windows /l en-us /s v: /f ALL

    i typed only:
    bcdboot c:Windows /l en-us /s v:

    without the /f ALL , because i read that this means EFI and BIOS, so i thought it was wrong.

    thanks again.

  • Prakash Chandra Pandey


    i am having a windows 8.1 vaio laptop. i installed fedora 20 on it .now i have deleted fedora partition from windows 8.1 manually. now i want to remove the linux bootloader.

    for this i followed ur steps.

    but in step (1. Assign the Drive Letter)

    how i can know on which volume my EFI Partition exit


    • Leptoid

      It is the FAT32 one… typically 100Mb.

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  • Paul Greenwald


    Followed the instructions. bcdboot was not able to open bootstore. now I get
    Your PC needs to be Repaired
    The Boot Configuration date for your PC is missing or contains errors.

    Error code:0xc000000f

    You’ll need to use the recovery tools on your installation media. If you don’t have any installation media (like disc or USB device), contact your system administrator or PC manufacturer


    • What happened when you tried to rebuild the BCD store?

      • Paul Greenwald

        the message was Unable to open BCDstore

      • Paul Greenwald

        Machine was under warranty from square trade. They fixed it by re-installing Windows 8.1. However, I had Professional and they installed the core version. How can I update this, or do I have to do a re-install of Windows 8 Pro and then update to 8.1 again?

        Paul G.

  • somedude13

    Thank you! These instructions worked like a charm.

  • Erik

    Thank you!

    Followed instructions exactly and was able to boot. (This after many failed attempts using alternative methods.)

    Thanks again!


  • Anshad Edavana

    There is an easy way to mount the “EFI System Partition” ( ESP )without going through the hassle of “DISKPART”. Simply enter “Mountvol V: /s” and the system will auto mount the ESP and assign letter “V” to it.

    • amyinnh

      Thank you.

  • Ander

    It worked perfectly, and you explained it so clearly and well. Thanks very much!

    • Duane

      I agree with Ander, given the provided screen shot, your instruction “Verify that the EFI partition is using the FAT32 file system” might make sense to you, but not to your intended audience.

      And now (July 2014) it seems your instructions need a bit of an update. When I look at my disk with diskpart I see:

      Volume 0 J HRM_CCSA_X6 UDF DVD-ROM 3415 MB
      Volume 1 C SystemRese NTFS Partition 350MB
      Volume 2 E __________ NTFS Partition 111GB

      The C: volume *is* the EFI partition but nothing says FAT32.

  • Costin Ionescu

    Hy, thank youfor you advice!

    I’ve made all the steps and it worked, kindof. When I restarted the laptop, the error didn’t apear, but after a few second apears the EASEUS Boot manager and it restarts.

    How can I remove the EASEUS Boot Manager? What can I do to get in to WIN.


  • Adam Smith

    You my sir are a Hero!!!!!!!

  • Ayman Osama

    i tried it and i fixed the bcd finally, but i used the drive c instead of v
    but the problem still there and i recieve the same error message 0xc00021a

  • sam

    Followed these directions and now when the computer is started it says Boot Device Not Found Please install an operating system on your hard disk Hard Disk (3F0). I can’t get to the blue screen like before to do the recovery of the o.s (do not have it on usb or disk). It will let me in BIOS and shows nothing as bootable, memory and hard drive tests work and passed. HELP!! The warranty expired in Feb. and HP wanted $60 bucks to talk to me and then 20 something for the disks!

  • Felix

    Thank you very much !! You are an ACE

  • GaryM

    I had a Win 7 primary and win 8 secondary partition. I removed the Win 7 and expanding Win 8 using gpart software. I knew it wouldn’t boot but figured the repair function on the DVD would catch it. Nope, that only works if the drive letters remain the same.

    I tried Vonnie’s fix, but I ran into the same issue others listed where CD could not find the EFI directory. I could see that the v: drive existed, etc but I wasn’t seeing any sub-directories on V: or anything. I even ran attrib and unhid everything. nope.

    A co-worker found this and passed it on:
    In a nutshell, boot to the advanced command prompt and run these 4 commands:
    bootrec /fixmbr
    bootrec /fixboot
    bootrec /scanos
    bootrec /rebuildbcd

    Worked like a charm. I’d go as far as to suggest trying this first because it was so, so easy.

    • Adib Ali

      By the sound of it you are actually still running on MBR partitions which doesn’t use EFI. EFI is only used on disks with GPT. GPT doesn’t have primary and secondary partitions.

    • DasLicht

      I get : Totally identified Windows Installation : 0

    • Eduardo Patricio

      I love you!! It worked perfectly. Thank you!!

    • Niels Koomans

      It worked like a fucking charm! Thanks!

    • Hazem

      THANKS A TON DUDE , i registered on disqus to upvote your comment , this fixed my problems , thank you a lot

  • Aidan Smoker

    Thanks very much for this tutorial/assistance. I just wrecked my Win8 boot-loader while messing around with a Linux dual boot. I had to search for and read the instructions with my mobile phone. They were very clear and well conveyed. Thanks again.

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  • Félix

    Thanks, I was looking to a fix for a week! A little question: while typind the command

    bcdboot c:Windows /l en-us /s v: /f ALL , you can change the en-us by your language (for me, fr-fr)
    Which menu does it affects?

  • zulhafiz zainon

    yeah..finally..it works..tq so much for helping me..finally..hehe

  • Grenoble

    How can I boot from CD on UEFI? This firmware doesn’t allow me to select the boot order as CD is on number 3 after windows boot manager (1) and hdd (2). So, unless 1 and 2 are corrupt, it’ll never get to 3.

  • Prashanth Pinto

    After having gone through so many wrong tutorials, this one finally worked. Thanks a lot

  • kev67

    Thanks a lot. I eventually managed to get my UEFI equipped Windows 8 laptop to boot off a USB memory stick with Linux Mint, just to discover it would not boot up without the memory stick in. I thought that was risky in case I lost the memory stick.

  • Lee

    Thanks a lot. Really helpful. Cheers

  • PaHra

    Thank you SO much! This totally worked for me!

    Once I installed Linux as second OS on my Sony Vaio Duo 11 convertible book, and when I removed it I couldn’t get rid of the Linux Boot Loader. So my Vaio got stuck on boot and it took up to 10 minutes to start. After this fix it is faster than one second – I even don’t see the boot screen anymore.
    I don’t know what to say but: Thank you, fixedByVonnie! I owe you one, just ask if you need some graphic stuff.

  • Steve H

    Hi Vonnie,
    I just wanted to drop you a THANK YOU comment. I had worked long and hard on fixing a BCD issue when someone decided to see if my laptop was waterproof. Unfortunately I had to dismantle the thing to pull battery power but after drying it was booting. I tried all the different methods I could find until google led me to your site. Many thanks for giving me a little less stress now I can have my gaming computer back and use it as intended. The laptop return to surfing and searching duties. Much Thanks for an easy to follow process that fixed me up.

    Steve in North Idaho

  • Lucas Dibartolo

    you sir are a life saver 🙂
    same problem with windows 8 and this was the only tutorial that worked!!!

  • Daniel Gustavo

    Hi Vonnie… With these tips, you “saved my life” on a very cold night here in Brazil. You can’t imagine! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    • Ha! Daniel great news. I’ve been never to Brazil. How cold does it get there?

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  • Martin Shelton

    Just a quick up date, when repairing a Toshiba laptop the following line won’t work

    cd /d v:EFIMicrosoftBoot

    you need to use this one

    cd /d v:ToshibaBoot

    That’s what worked for me as there was no EFI folder!

  • Mohamed Shehab

    Thanks a lot dude you saved me a lo of time

    • Mohamed! I’m seriously so glad I could help. Time is our most valuable asset, even more valuable than money since we can’t get it back, therefore I’m really happy I could save you time.

  • munky82


    A client’s HDD was failing, we cloned it and got a replacement from the manufacturer (2 months old Dell!). Turns out the OS was pointed to D: for some reason. Following these steps the OS booted fine. For some reason in Windows it is the standard C:. Ah well. It works.

    • Hey Munky, I’m glad I could help!

      • crymsonfyre

        Hi Vonnie I msged you earlier and was wondering, I get failed in the last command. I will go through it again and show you a screenshot, can you help me?

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  • ankit sharma

    I had installed win 7 on drive C and win 8.1 on drive D and kept another drive E for data.today, i tried to move some free space from C drive to D drive using EaseUS software but now win 8.1 is not loading and i m getting the attached error.however.win 7 is loading.please help 🙁

  • Abel Rubio Jr.

    So when I try to do the final bcdboot step, it tells me “failure when attempting to copy boot files” Ive done everything to the point please if you can help me I would prob cry

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  • Den Dennis

    Well after spending hours looking a solution to this problem without any luck, I stumbled upon this page. You sir, are a legend! Worked perfectly and saved me from the dreaded “windows refresh”! Thanks again 🙂

  • Ces Blanco

    After i put in bootrec /fixboot
    it says eliment not found?
    What next? Please help

  • Mathilde Brizemeure

    No idea what you made me do, but it worked. So … thanks, dude. In fact, the whole thing was so remarkably easy and efficient, compared to the recovery tools I had been spending the night on before I stumbled into your tutorial, that I just downloaded an extensive course about command line for dummies such as I. Once again, great job.

    From France with gratitude,


    • Stephen Little

      The problem I have is that the HDD is not recognised and so none of the Win 8.1 recovery tools work. I have run antivirus software and CHKDSK software but no viruses have been found and the HDD has no faults. I can only assume that both GPT records are corrupt. Does anyone have any advice on how to recover the HDD without having to do a clean install?

  • Harry Tsang

    You should notice us to mark the Windows volume down which is C: in your case. I used quite a long time to figure out it’s F: in my case.

  • ‘Tis Moi

    1) will the enterprise version of 8 work for this
    2) what do you do if your username doesn’t appear at login? All I get is administrator?

  • Fenosoa Havana Rakotondramanan

    I want to fix my asus vivotab

    Does it work also with windows RT 8.0 or do I need to change something?


  • vandrewal

    Great! Just what I needed. Worked just as advertised, once I learnt exactly what the EFI partition was/does. Thank you!

  • seb

    well I think I am the only one how could not restart the windows.
    The thing is that when I write bcdboot c:Windows /l en-us /s v: /f ALL then I get a problem: copy is not possible.

    What I should do to use Windows 8 again?
    Thanks in advance

    • seb

      i need to add that i remove the old partition where windows 8 was installed. That means that on c: there is nothing,should a create myself the directory windows or Windows and move there the en-us files?? thanks for the help

      • usuario123456

        please help

  • usuario123456

    I get all the steps right, but get stuck in this part: (assigned letter “i”)

    i:EFIMicrosoftBoot>ren BCD BCD.bak
    The System cannot find the file specified

    • Lic. Ariel Abaca

      It means you donot have the file. Just go on with the steps. You should be good.

  • Lic. Ariel Abaca

    Vonnie, Manuel, my nephew said: “This page rules, man! It totally recovered my ultrabook from a problema i did créate (deleting some very important files)”. Thanks a lot. We did not lose any information. Thanks again for taking the time to write the blog. It’s been very helpful.

    Regards from Argentina.


    • usuario123456

      soy de Argentina, podes ayudarme? http://i.imgur.com/2rmM2CT.jpg

      • Lic. Ariel Abaca

        Creo que tu problema es que falta una contrabarra “” entre c: y Windows. Que quede C:Windows.


        • usuario123456

          Buena observacion, lo provare. Tambien note que Volume 1 C esta marcado como RAW, y no se si eso influya tambien. Muchas gracias.

  • Pedro Carvalho

    Thank you. Excellent post. It allowed me to recover my windows boot.

    However, for those less experienced, in order to reach the command line
    when booting from a Windows installation DVD/USB stick, just hit the ‘Next’ button at
    the first dialog box and in the following screen hit ‘Repair your computer’
    on the bottom left side of the screen. Then choose
    Troubleshoot->Advanced options->Command Prompt

  • Arnie Hajnal


  • Tony

    Hey, you are excellent! You really know what you are doing and your explanations are some of the best that I have seen on the net—very clear and simple. I have spent over 6 hours trying to follow solutions provided by others but their instructions were ambiguous at best and difficult to follow and, of course, did not work for me. Your solution was simple and brilliant — happy holidays! Tony

  • tribe_less

    Thanks for the write-up. I first tried using Windows’ “repair boot” option but it just quit with a “drive is locked” message and nowhere to go from there. I followed these steps and that fixed it!

  • Excellent article, filled in the missing steps I hadn’t found elsewhere/ I just needed to switch back to a “normal” Windows 8 boot.

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  • Afzaal

    Failure when attempting to copy both files. need help?

  • Thiago

    I love you vonnie! This fixed my PC! THAAAANK YOU!

  • Awesome tutorial, Vonnie. thank you very much.

    Simply amazing that MS does not wrap this into their automatic repair routines. At heart it’s simple. It’s just a matter of knowing what to do.

  • Chairman67

    I know this thread is as old as the Aussie Outback, but I just gotta say this, Thank YOU so much for this boot loader repair tuition.. It worked like a charm… Very happy camper! Cheers my man!

  • Beckie Evans

    I know this is a really old post, but i just want to thank you so much! This guide is the only one I found which fixed my laptop bootloader.

  • Rich

    Thank you so much worked perfectly! Ruined my Windows boot somehow running gparted on Ubuntu Live USB but didn’t actually change anything…

  • crymsonfyre

    I have a problem with the last cmd line as it fails. Can someone help me out? bcdboot c:Windows /l en-us /s v: /f ALL

  • Jacob

    Thanks a lot for this tutorial. I had cloned a 500G hdd to 240G SSD using EasUS Todo Backup but it was failing to boot in my Dell Inspiron laptop that has new EFI/GPT boot system.

    For 5 days, I tried a lot of softwares and Windows recovery disks but none of them fixed the problem. Your tutorial fixed it in 10 minutes.

    Things that was different in my case:

    . 5 partitions instead of 3
    . ESP instead of ESI
    . D:Windows instead of C:Windows

  • Thanks so much … worked like a charm.
    Old enough to remember when all was DOS (even Basic in high school) .. Step by step was great help. Daughter’s netbook stalled (no media or boot disk of course – IMO original media should be provided with original license) and would be 7 + days for HP to send out media….
    The step by step is greatly appreciated!

  • Plazma

    but if isint there any “cd /d v:EFIMicrosoftBoot” what can do?

  • Jacob Graham

    Worked great!!! After 3 hours of searching this did it in 5 mins.

  • Awad

    thank you this helped me

  • savebyj

    Worked! You saved me a bundle of trouble! You have a paypal account? I will gladly post a small donation for your efforts. Keep up the good work!

  • Rakesh

    Hi Vonnie,

    When I issued sel disk 0 , I got message as “the disk you specified is not valid”. Also list vol gives output as ” there are no volumes” . Please advice.


  • mathhiwanen

    You are life saver. I spend 2 days trying all sorts of solution. Yours worked within 10 minutes for me. Thanks Mathi

  • Andy Nelson

    I made an account just to say Thank You!! I had never thought about assigning a volume letter in disk part like that. Worked perfectly.


    QUestion Vonnie: I boot up to 8 usb fine get to the advanced section select command prompt and I get a blank light blue screen foever not account question or any of that. I was wondering what might cuse that it works fine on my other computer but not this one

  • Ahmed

    Thank you so much. You save my day. Instead of reinstalling the windows and copying on and off files. You saved me like 2 days of work.

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  • Harvey

    Hi Vonnie, your fix worked perfectly for me. Thanks for your very clear tuto.

  • Danielle

    You saved my life. Thanks!

  • Sperro

    Thansk Vonnie… Eventhough the boot is repaired.. stil can’t get to windows. after dell scree loads a bloack screen follows.. any ideas .. please help

  • Leptoid

    Thanks for the help. I used a lot of guides but something was still off with mine. After making some interesting changes on my own, then combining it with this, my computer now boots from my SSD instead of my 1TB drive (it was using the 1TB to boot the SSD even though both had the boot files).

  • Dash_Alpha

    What if you don’t have Vol 3 (An EFI Partition) and you are using boot override to start windows.

  • Dash_Alpha

    What if you get “Failure when attempting to copy boot files.” when running the “bcdboot c:Windows /l en-us /s v: /f ALL” command

    • j man

      same here

      • Sanj Mann

        Same here…Did you figure this one out?

    • Marcus Gustafsson

      Make sure that your windows partition is actually located on C: using diskpart, otherwise try changing accordingly.

  • Fernando


    work for me thank vonnie

    Just follow all the step that vonnie has provided and that it.


  • yaddamaster

    freaking brilliant – wish I had found your page first. Was exactly what I needed. Thanks!

  • Epiphany K

    thx for saving me, this article really heleps me out. I got 2 OS on my laptop, win10(upgrade from 8.1 and on SSD) and win8, somehow that win10 SSD doesn’t have any bootable partitions…so when I replace the old HD with a new one, I can’t boot at all…I guess either win10 or win8 tried being a wise ass…thinking that another new OS doesn’t need to be bootable …

  • j man

    using windows 10 mine comes up with “failure when attempting to copy boot files.” after the last step

  • Tim Leon

    Thank you for this excellent step by step help. I’m a computer science major in college and I really messed up my windows 10 laptop today. After 17 hours of trying unsuccessfully to fix it I found your help here. It did the trick and I have my computer back now. Thank you, you wonderful person!

  • Rah

    After browsing a million pages, this was the only solution i could find that worked for me.
    You deserve a mega-hug! Thank you sir

  • Alexandre Magno

    I have GRUB 2 in the SSD. bcdboot fails and nothing is changed. How to change from GRUB to BCD when we are using a ESP partition with UEFI/GPT?

  • Ewing Kang

    Thank you!!!!
    It started with ubuntu update problem that broke every graphic driver. It then becomes some serious ubuntu booting issue (I have win8 came with the laptop, ubuntu12.04 and 14.04). And the process of trying to fix the linux actually destroyed and wipe out all the data in EFI partition.
    This is the first success for three days for me to get my system including windows and ubuntu back. I thought I’d lost my computer (burst into tears). But it came back after your instruction.

  • Mark SF

    This along with BCDboot /rec saved me on a EFI Win 7 SP1 boot recovery. You can use a Win 7 install disc command prompt. Similar to the above except no account login.

  • Winston Churchil

    im stuck at ‘Assign Drive’..my boot is in D:WindowsBoot..so should i rename the drive to D? like cd /d D:WindowsBootEFI

    • Mark SF

      EFI is a partition at the front of a drive and contains boot information on GPT drives from Vista OS on. It does not have an assigned drive letter which is hwy you have to assign one to work and change the files within. If you do not have a EFI and you have an OS on the drive you have a MBR drive. Use your installation disk recovery option to recover your OS boot.

  • Faruq

    OMG. Thank you so much for this. Helped me fix my laptop. Followed the exact guide as you said. Thank you so much

  • Gabriel Porto

    Works like magic. Thank you! 🙂

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  • Matt Doyle

    Thank you for a great guide. This helped me recover my win 8.1 box.

    I was getting the following error message, and had spent a while googling to figure out what was wrong. Your guide did a great job walking me through the fixes. Thank you so much.

    Seriously, thank you. Like, a million times: thank you.

    “Your PC needs to be repaired

    File: BootBCD

    Error code: 0x0000034

    You’ll need to use the recovery tools on your installation media. If you dont have any installation media (like a disc or USB device), contact your system administrator or PC Manufacturer.”

  • Raffaele Forgione

    You really saved my day!!! Thanks a lot!

  • Casco

    It doesn’t work for me after the whole thing when I restarted the PC gave me that Missing Operative System msg if somebody could help me please

  • Magno

    Thanks, that was perfect, it solves my problem!!!!

  • Вячеслав Литвиненко

    I have Windows 8, So one day I faced with problem of recovery the EFI
    Bootloader. I started with searching information about it and I found
    this article and it helped me very much. Thank you. Apropos I know
    another helpful article and I must tell about it to you:

  • Seen another tutorial similar to yours here: https://neosmart.net/wiki/the-drive-where-windows-is-installed-is-locked/#Fix_5_Set_the_correct_partition

    Was able to use the same method on Windows 10 to restore the EFI bootloader

  • Curtisy

    Hey, I just wanted to step by and give you a great thanks for rescuing
    me from downloading around 300gb of files from my old windows
    installation I couldn’t use because of a corrupted gpt partition. Thank
    you very much!
    What happened was that I compiled an unfinished os on
    my Linux Distro and it ovverrode the boot partition to RAW. I spent 2
    sleepless days clicking through ubuntu and tried all possible solutions
    not knowing of the Raw format by then. When I found your article, I
    realized what the problem was and could fix it accordingly. I tweaked it
    a little of course because Windows couldn’t access the raw partition
    but it still worked and I’m back to Windows again!
    Now I’m going to
    sleep for a while ;P thanks again for the awesome tips.

  • Djdannys Oramas

    This worked perfect to me, I made a cloned hd disk with clonezilla, but after i put the cloned hd it wont boot, the second think I remembered was that windows wasnt on c letter because c letter was for documentos and backup files, so windows was on D letter. after all the command you gave all was fine and the cloned Hd worked perfect., only the documentos letters dissapear on windows, but I fixed with admintration hd tools on windows 8.1, really thanks!

  • Ran Mikazuki

    OMG this worked I’m crying I seriously can’t thank you enough for this!! I’ve spent literally 5 hours scrolling down forums, reading and trying all kinds of tricks when I’m not even that much of a computer expert so I had to look up all kinds of information and learned many things and I have a headache believe me! But bumping into this site was the best thing that happened to me today. Thank you very much I was FINALLY able to fix my father’s laptop when I was about to give up because bootrec rebuildbcd command failed every time and it was very frustrating!

  • Jean Adam Calixto

    Thanks a lot. This is the real DEAL. Just recovered my windows 10 boot, after more than one hour searching, by following your commands.

  • ‘Tis Moi

    Old guy, able able to text. Can I set up for him?

  • Aussie Alice

    Vonnie, you’re a legend! These instructions are awesome…worked like a charm on Windows 10. Scrolled numerous forums and tried all other fix commands (e.g bootrec rebuildbcd etc) with no joy. So glad I found you, you saved my life! 🙂

  • Derek Williams

    I know this thread is old but I just did this same exact thing but on windows 10 and your tutorial was by far the clearest I found. It also worked like a charm so thank you for your time and for helping computer noobs like myself.

  • Enzzo Perez RP

    it worked for me on a Vaio with W8, thank u, u r a hero jaja

  • Scott Davis

    This saved my freaking bacon. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  • Bluey Zarzoff

    Just a Heads Up
    Some of windows 10 (version 1803) repair tools are broken. Like: bootrec /fixboot etc. But if you use a windows 8 or 8.1 disk & boot to the command prompt that way they still work. M/Soft has know about this glitch since (version 1709) but they haven’t bothered to fix it, so maybe they broke it on purpose.

    Also you forgot to mention that after you exit & leave Diskpart the very next thing you need to do is type the letter you gave the Fat32 system partition at the command prompt.

    In your case you would type “exit” (to leave diskpart) and then type:”V:” at the command prompt to change to that disk location.

    Then you would type: cd /d v:EFIMicrosoftBoot.
    If you don’t type the disk partition letter you are trying to fix/rebuild it doesn’t know where to apply the fix & will always give the “access Denied” error.

  • Vince Aggrippino

    Oh, I miss the days when all I had to worry about was CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT.

    Well, you saved my butt. I’m on Windows 10 and this morning it would only boot to recovery. I spent the day searching for solutions using my phone and an old laptop, but none of the solutions I found worked. Most of the causes I found didn’t match up, either… I haven’t been trying to dual-boot Linux (on this computer) and I didn’t just install updates… Today it just stopped working.

    It was either renaming BCD before trying to create it or the `/f ALL` that worked for me because those two parts were missing from all the instructions I found on other sites.

    I really appreciate the explanation of the commands here. So many other sites just say something like *type these commands and tell me if it works* without offering an explanation.

    Not bad for something you wrote almost 5 years ago.

  • Rob Woolcock

    Hi Vonnie
    I get as far as bootrec /fixboot command then it says access is denied. I have done this twice both with the same result any sugestions would be very welcome

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    I’m happy to have come across a lot of helpful info here, thanks for sharing.