Tutorial Windows: Fast Windows Startup: Remove Another OS from Boot Options

Even if Microsoft struggles to improve Windows with each iteration, it doesn’t mean it’s the only operating system you can install on a PC, or that you can’t have different iterations on the same computer.

In some scenarios, you only need to test out some features on a specific type of Windows, or a completely different operating system. Sure enough you can install the target or test OS on a virtual machine, but system resources are not all available, since at least half need to be reserved for the host OS.

Yesterday was quite a busy day for Windows enthusiasts, and we’re sure that an unimaginable amount of data has been written overall on hard disk drives to deploy the new OS from Microsoft. If you went with the clean install, then little else bothers you, but upgrading or installing on a different partition comes with some side effects.

If at least two different operating systems are installed, your computer displays them in the boot screen, giving you some time to decide which you want to run. However, upgrading Windows or other circumstances can leave a useless option in the boot screen that only slows down loading time. Here’s how you can remove those extra entries:

Removing other Windows boot options

The Long Way Around
Since boot management can mess up the way Windows starts, it’s not exactly an option put in plain sight. The basic method of viewing and changing them is through the Command Prompt, the brain of it all.

Step 1: Open the Command Prompt with Admin privileges.

Hint: The fastest way to do this is to right-click the Start button and choose to run Command Prompt (Admin).

Step 2: Write down bcdedit and press Enter.

A long list of items needs to appear. These are structured in sections, and you should see at least one that’s named Windows Boot Loader. Now you need to find the Windows iteration you’re currently running, so you know what NOT to delete. Look under each Windows Boot Loader header next to the identifier entry. The identifier that has {current} as value is the one you’re running.

Step 3: Right-click anywhere inside the Command Prompt window and select Mark.

Step 4: Now select the long string of characters next to the identifier entry for the Windows Boot Loader you want to remove. It needs to look something like this: {8f7f8fd2-2e06-11e4-8f4c-860f8391e1ef}.

Step 5: Check to see if the string is properly selected, including the curly braces. Press Enter to have the selection copied to the clipboard.

Hint: The Command Prompt is not built to recognize common hotkeys, so using Ctrl + C and Ctrl + V to copy and paste the required code does not work.

Step 6: Write down bcdedit /delete and press space once.

Step 7: Right-click anywhere in the Command Prompt window and choose to Paste.

Make sure that what you’ve written down looks something like this, except for the long code, which is unique:

bcdedit /delete {8f7f8fd2-2e06-11e4-8f4c-860f8391e1ef}

Step 8: Press Enter to remove that specific Windows Boot Loader entry.

Step 9: Write down bcdedit and press Enter to check if your selection really got removed.

Step 10: Restart your PC and enjoy booting up Windows in a fast, hassle-free manner.

The Shortcut
If you find using the Command Prompt too complicated or are afraid to mess up something else, then you might want to know that there’s an alternative. You have to rely on the MSconfig tool, but options are clearer and the whole process only requires you to press a few mouse clicks.

Step 1: Press Win + R to launch the Run utility.

Step 2: Write down msconfig and press Enter so that the System Configuration window is brought up.

Step 3: Switch to the Boot tab.

Note: The Windows iteration you’re using is shown with extra parameters. It’s easy to identify, looking something like this: Windows 8.1 (C:WINDOWS) : Current OS; Default OS. Don’t worry, Windows does not allow you to delete it.

Step 4: Select the entry you want to remove and press Delete.

Note: You need to repeat Step 4 for every different boot option you want to remove, because multiple selection is not allowed.

Step 5: Hit Apply and OK to confirm changes.

Step 6: A new prompt appears and asks whether or not to restart the PC now or later on. It’s all up to you because your current OS is not affected.

The App For That
Simple issues or difficulties are usually solved by patches and updates. However, time-consuming operations are best dealt with through specialized applications. As you’ve probably guessed, there’s an app for this situation too.

Step 1: Download, install, and run EasyBCD.

Step 2: Choose to Edit Boot Menu from the left pane.

Note: It may seem a bit difficult to identify the Windows iteration you’re using by looking at the given list, especially because all boot possibilities are enlisted, such as optical or removable drives. However, the one marked as Default is the one you’re currently using.

Step 3: Select the OS you want to remove and press Delete in the upper toolbar.

Important Note: Do NOT attempt to remove anything else other that an OS entry, or you risk making specific devices undetectable.

Step 4 (optional): Repeat Step 3 for every OS you want to remove.

Step 5: Choose to Save Settings and quit the application. The next time you run the computer, the default OS starts without any other prompts.

In conclusion

Sure enough you’ve tried your luck with Windows 10, and chances are you didn’t want to risk losing all files and programs, so you deployed it on a different partition, also leaving the other OS available. Windows 10 fires up pretty fast, and it would be a shame not to benefit from having to wait only a few seconds until you can use the desktop.

Wagiman Wiryosukiro

Petani Sistem Informasi, tukang las plugin & themes Wordpress. Co-Founder SistemInformasi.biz. Saat ini aktif sebagai Developer & kontributor di OpenMandriva Linux.

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