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How to boot to the Troubleshoot menu on Windows 10

If Windows 10 fails to start several times in succession, you’re eventually taken to the Troubleshoot menu where there are multiple options/tools at your disposal to fix the problem. If you’re on your desktop, you can go to the Settings app and under the recovery options, you can access the troubleshoot menu. If you’d like to boot to the Troubleshoot menu without a failed start up, and without going through the Settings app, you can. It’s really a matter of tapping the right key at the right time.

Boot to Troubleshoot menu

There are multiple ways to boot to the Troubleshoot menu but we’re going to cover methods that you can use if you are unable to access the desktop. From the desktop, it’s easy to access the menu but from a clean/fresh boot, it’s not as simple.

Tap F11 key

The first and easiest method to boot to the Troubleshoot menu is to turn on your PC, and tap the F11 key. Make sure you tap it repeatedly and that you start doing so right away. If your system tends to boot quickly, you might have to make a few attempts at booting to the troubleshoot menu.

In the event that the F11 key doesn’t work, try the F8 or Shift+F8. It may or may not work but it’s worth trying if the F11 key doesn’t.

Installation media

Installation media i.e. a USB that you can use to install Windows 10 can also be used to fix problems with Windows 10. The trick is getting your hands on installation media when you’re unable to boot to your desktop. You will need to use another system but once you have access to one, creating installation media is easy. You can download it from Microsoft’s website for free. There’s no need to enter a license key.

Connect the USB to your system, and make sure it is set to boot from the USB device. The installation media will give you options to either install Windows 10 or to fix problems with the current installation.

Force shut down on start

If all else fails, this method will work. Turn on your system and before it can boot to the desktop, force shut it down by holding down the power button. Repeat this at least 3-5 times and eventually, you will get the Troubleshoot menu. This method should not have any side effects nor should it damage files on your system.

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