Windows Vista introduced a new boot loader, BOOTMGR, with a new format for boot menu options. All versions of Windows released since Windows Vista contain their boot menu options in the BCD file - irrespective of whether the system has UEFI or BIOS firmware. If you want to manually add or edit boot menu options, or check existing entries, then you can utilise the BCDEdit.exe tool.

These notes are based upon diddy's BCDEdit Notes and have been adapted with the kind permission of the original author. Whilst they are not intended to be a definitive guide to BCD stores or using the bcdedit tool, a comprehensive list of commands for several versions of BCDEdit have been included as a reference.

There are numerous commands listed in these notes however the vast majority of them are not required in everyday usage. The examples included here cover a range of boot scenarios and the more common commands for managing objects/entries.

These notes are heavily biased towards systems with BIOS firmware, however much of the information is still relevant to UEFI systems as...

"...BCD abstracts the underlying firmware and provides a common programming interface that can be used to manipulate the boot environment for all systems running Windows Vista or later versions of Windows. ..."

BCDEdit Reference (White Paper - dated January 31, 2008)


Throughout the notes any text with a      highlight (e.g. bcdedit /createstore C:\boot\BCD) is a command - usually to be entered at a command prompt.

Any text with a      highlight (e.g. The command completed successfully.) indicates output from running a command.

Any text within [ ] brackets is a keyboard input - e.g. [Enter] = press "Enter" key.

There are a number of textboxes containing text to be added to files - this may have become wrapped and should not be manually copied. Copy the text by highlighting it and holding [ctrl]+[c], then open a text editor (e.g. Notepad) and hold [ctrl]+[v] to paste the copied text. Make sure when saving the file that the correct file extension is used - e.g. File > Save As... and enter "My_file.cmd" in the File name: box (with quotes).