The Right Way to Access UEFI Settings on Windows

Ben Stegner 29-06-2017

When was the last time you accessed your UEFI Discover Your BIOS & Learn How to Make the Most of It What the heck is the BIOS, anyway? Is it really that important to know? We think so and fortunately it's pretty easy. Let us introduce you. Read More  menu? Perhaps you went in to troubleshoot a problem, or maybe you needed to adjust a gaming-related setting Optimize Your PC for Gaming With These 4 Vital Tweaks Wondering how to optimize your PC for gaming? Use these vital tips to keep your gaming PC setup running at its best. Read More . Some folks may have never even been to that part of their computer.


Next time you need to get into the UEFI (or maybe you’ll venture in for the first time), here’s a quick way to do it in Windows 10. Note that this won’t work for legacy BIOSes. If you bought or built your computer with Windows 8 or newer on it, chances are your computer uses UEFI, not a legacy BIOS.

Open the Start Menu and click Settings. Choose Update & security, then click Recovery on the left-hand side. Under Advanced startup, click the Restart now button. This will obviously restart your computer, so make sure to save any open work first!

Once your computer has rebooted, you’ll see a list of options. Choose Troubleshoot, then Advanced options. You’ll see another menu — select UEFI Firmware Settings. Finally, clicking the Restart button will reboot your computer into your UEFI BIOS options.

Depending on your motherboard, you might be able to access this menu by pressing a certain key upon startup. However, on an SSD this menu only lasts for a moment, and you might miss it. If you’re already inside Windows and need to visit your UEFI options, this is a reliable way to do it without guessing the key.

Since you’re already there, make sure to also check for UEFI updates How to Update Your UEFI BIOS in Windows Most PC users go without ever updating their BIOS. If you care for continued stability, however, you should periodically check whether an update is available. We show you how to safely update your UEFI BIOS. Read More !


When was the last time you visited the UEFI menu? Do you prefer another method to access it? Tell us in the comments!

Related topics: UEFI, Windows 10, Windows Tricks.

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  1. WPR
    July 28, 2018 at 12:02 pm

    The BIOS tip worked perfect for enabling virtualization on my computer. I tweaked it a bit for my case but, helped to solve a piece of my current puzzle. Thank you

  2. sonic jensen
    July 2, 2017 at 10:35 pm

    My MSI motherboard supports a lovely feature " hold power button in a second, to boot into the bios"

  3. David Robinson
    June 30, 2017 at 12:28 am

    Just hold the shift key while using the standard start menu 'restart' ... the computer will reboot into BIOS .. for both UEFI and legacy.

    Much faster than the described method.

  4. Linux Geek
    June 29, 2017 at 11:37 am

    you couldn't just start tapping f12 after power on?

    • ZentixZaneic
      June 29, 2017 at 1:14 pm

      Let me know if I completely butcher the explanation.

      As far as I know, it depends on the model of laptop. For example, on Dells (like my laptop), it generally is F12. But, on other systems, the key might be different. Also, generally, on UEFI systems, something called "secure boot" is turned on by default, not allowing you to change any of the boot settings while it powers up. This is a sort of security feature. However, by using the method detailed above, you can turn off secure boot, allowing you to do things such as change the boot order, choose what to boot from, etc.

      It can be helpful to keep this option on, but if your system ever breaks, and you need to boot from a USB drive, this means that you'll need to boot from your broken OS to your USB drive. But, it is still possible to install some Linux distros on there. One such distro is Ubuntu.

    • Doc
      July 3, 2017 at 9:49 pm

      That doesn't always work - some UEFI BIOSes start so fast that there's no "press a key" option to enter the UEFI settings; and not every motherboard that DOES allow it uses F12. Some are F1, F2, F11, or DELETE (with a majority F1, F2, or DELETE); Toshiba, IIRC, is one of the few that use F12 to enter the BIOS. Some systems are even so old there IS no F11 or F12 key (or just don't expect them to be there)!