Advanced Startup options in Windows 10. Change Boot defaults when dual-booting.

In this post, we will take a look at the Windows Startup Settings, or Advanced Startup options Windows 10 and also see how to change Boot defaults when you are dual-booting your computer.

When you dual-boot Windows 10 with an earlier version of Windows like Windows 8.1 or Windows, before you log in, you will see the following screen offering you the available operating systems. You can choose the operating system you wish to boot in, or by default, you will be booted you into default operating system after 10 seconds.

Change defaults or choose other options 1

If you wish to change some of your default boot and login options and settings, you may click on the Change defaults or choose other options link, which you will see towards the bottom.

If you have only one OS installed, you may start your computer and then keep pressing the F8 key before Windows starts. You will see the Advanced Options screen.

Change Windows 10 Boot default settings

Once you do this, you will see the following Options screen. Here you can change the Timer settings, set the default operating system to boot into and set other options too.

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Clicking on Change the timer will bring you to the following screen, where you can set the boot timer to 5 seconds, 30 seconds or 5 minutes. This is the time you have to wait before the default OS is automatically loaded. The default setting here is 10 seconds.

Change defaults boot 3

Clicking on Choose a default operating system will let you set the operating system you want to automatically load, after waiting for the set amount of time. The setting in my case is Windows 10.

Change defaults or choose other options 4

Clicking on Choose an option will present you with the following options.

  1. You can click on Continue and exit to your default OS
  2. You can use another installed operating system
  3. you can troubleshoot your PC by opening Advanced Options
  4. Or you can Turn Off your PC.

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Advanced Startup options Windows 10

If you need to troubleshoot problems with your Windows computer, you can click on Troubleshoot. When you do this, you are offered:

  1. Reset This PC option
  2. Advanced options.

Advanced Startup options Windows 10

If you wish to reset your PC, select Reset the PC option. If you need to access other troubleshooting and repair tools, click on Advanced Options, to arrive at the following screen.

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Here you will see:

  1. System Restore: Useful if you want to restore your Windows 10 PC.
  2. System Image Recovery: Lets you recover your Windows using a system image file.
  3. Startup Repair: Fixes startup problems
  4. Command Prompt: Using the CMD you can access the more advanced built-in Windows tools
  5. Startup Settings: It lets you change Windows startup options
  6. Go back to the previous build.

If you wish to directly access these Advanced startup options when working on your Windows 10, you can do so via the Settings app of Windows 10 > Update & Security > Recovery > Advanced startup and click the Restart now button.

Clicking on Startup Settings will let you change the preset startup settings and options.


Here you can:

  1. Enable low-resolution mode
  2. Enable debugging mode
  3. Enable boot logging
  4. Enable Safe Mode
  5. Disable driver signature enforcement
  6. Disable early-launch anti-malware protection
  7. Disable automatic restart on system failure.

Windows 10 users may want to especially note that this is where you can enable Safe Mode.

Clicking on the Restart button will bring you to the following Startup Settings screen:

Change Windows 10 Boot defaults

You have to press the keys to bring up the options. Clicking on F10 will show you some more options including Launch recovery environment.

Pressing Enter will bring you back to your operating system.

These settings are useful to know as, not only can you change your boot defaults here, but they can also be very useful to you if your computer will not start or you need to troubleshoot and fix other Windows problems.

Related reads:

Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags
Anand Khanse is the Admin of, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.


  1. Mészáros Antal

    Very good! THX

  2. Laura

    You may be interested to know that you can configure your machine to open the boot menu each time you start your computer/laptop/Surface. Which means you can select the system image you want to load when you boot instead of having to choose a defaul

  3. Leonidas Savvides

    basically where is this(How set this in w10): Boot Order: USB stick/hdd»DVD drive»HDD1»HDD2…?

  4. Rafael

    That’s not and never has been a feature of Windows. You change those settings in your BIOS.

  5. Last To Know


  6. Jon Wells

    None of the startup settings offer a way to change the boot order.

  7. Roger B

    My Windows 10 laptop does not have the GUI, it boots to a DOS type screen where you cursor down or up to choose the OS you want to boot to. I am not able to run bcdedit so I’m a little stuck with this now. Any thoughts from anyone?

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