How to enter BIOS in Windows 10

While most users never have to do this, there are times when you need to know how to enter the BIOS on your Windows 10 PC, laptop, or tablet. The UEFI BIOS in Windows 10 is the first software to run on your computer and controls the way the hardware works. It also lets you access and configure the settings of the device's components. This tutorial illustrates how to get to the Windows 10 BIOS on your PC, laptop, or tablet:

NOTE: If you heard of BIOS or UEFI BIOS and want to know more, read What is BIOS? What does BIOS mean?. If you're not sure if your device is using UEFI BIOS, you can figure that out by reading 8 ways to find your computer's motherboard BIOS version.

How to enter UEFI BIOS in Windows 10 from the Settings app

In Windows 10, a surefire way to access the BIOS, regardless of your device, is from the Settings app. Open Settings and click or tap on Update & Security.

Access Update & Security

On the Update & Security page, access the Recovery tab from the left column. On the right, in the Advanced startup section, look for the Restart now button. Save and close any files you were working on to avoid losing your progress, and then click or tap on Restart now.

Press Restart now

Windows 10 restarts and displays a blue screen - the Advanced startup menu - instead of the standard login screen. Your mouse might not be available from this point on. If that is the case, use the arrow keys to navigate the options available, and then press Enter to access them. If you're using a touchscreen device, tap on the options you want to open. For the next step, go to Troubleshoot.

Access Troubleshoot

On the next screen, access Advanced options.

Go to Advanced options

Select UEFI Firmware Settings from the options available.

Access UEFI Firmware Settings

To change your UEFI firmware settings, you have to restart your Windows 10 device. Press Restart.

Restart your device to access BIOS

Your system restarts and loads the BIOS.

How to get to the UEFI BIOS using Shift + Restart in Windows 10

If the above method is too complicated, or if you want to access the BIOS without signing into your Windows 10 account, you can use a shortcut to reach it. Hold down Shift on your keyboard and then click or tap on the Restart option from any Power menu available on your computer or device. In the screenshot below, we opened the Start menu, pressed the Power button, and then used Shift + Restart.

Hold down the Shift key while pressing Restart from the Start menu

You can also reach the Power menu from the login screen and several other ways. For detailed steps on accessing it, check out our article on restarting your Windows 10 device. Keep in mind that this method works only when there is an actual Restart button you can press while holding down Shift.

Hold down the Shift key while pressing Restart on the sign-in screen

After restarting, Windows 10 displays the blue Advanced startup menu. Go to Troubleshoot > Advanced options > UEFI Firmware Settings, and then press Restart - these steps are illustrated in the previous section of this tutorial. Windows 10 restarts again and takes you to the BIOS.

How to access UEFI BIOS from the Run window in Windows 10

You can also reach UEFI BIOS on your Windows 10 PC, laptop, or tablet from the Run window. There are several ways to access it, but we prefer the Windows + R shortcut. In the Open field, type in shutdown /r /o /f /t 00 and then press Enter on your keyboard or click or tap on OK.

Enter the command in the Run window

If the command above is too long to remember, enter shutdown.exe /r /o in the Run window instead.

Enter the shorter command into Run

This time, Windows 10 displays a notification to let you know you are about to be signed out. Wait it out or use the few seconds you get before the restart to save any open work files.

Windows 10 lets you know it's about to sign you out

After the restart, you are taken to the blue Advanced startup menu. Access Troubleshoot > Advanced options > UEFI Firmware Settings, and then press Restart - these steps are detailed in the first section of this tutorial. Windows 10 restarts again and, this time, it loads the UEFI BIOS.

How to reach UEFI BIOS from Command Prompt in Windows 10

If you prefer the Command Prompt, feel free to use the same commands to access BIOS with this tool. You can open the Command Prompt using different methods, but we prefer to type cmd in our taskbar's search field and click or tap on the appropriate result.

Access Command Prompt

Insert shutdown /r /o /f /t 00 and press Enter on your keyboard to restart your Windows 10 PC, laptop, or tablet in the Advanced startup menu.

Insert the command and press the Enter key

Alternatively, you can also insert shutdown.exe /r /o in the Command Prompt and then press Enter.

Use an alternate command to restart

Windows 10 displays a brief notification to let you know you are about to be signed out. Take the time to close any unsaved file before your device restarts.

Windows 10 warns you about the restart

Windows 10 restarts in the blue Advanced startup menu. Go to Troubleshoot > Advanced options > UEFI Firmware Settings, and then press Restart, as detailed in the first section of this tutorial. Your PC, laptop, or tablet restarts, taking you to the UEFI BIOS.

How to quickly enter UEFI BIOS on a Surface Pro or a Surface Book

If you are using a Surface Pro or a Surface Book, there is a simple way to access the UEFI BIOS. First, make sure that your Surface device is shut down. Look on its sides to find the Volume Up (+) button and press-and-hold on it.

The Volume Up button on a Surface device

Then, press and release the Power button. Keep pressing the Volume Up (+) button until you see either the Microsoft or the Surface logo on the screen. Release the button, and the UEFI BIOS is now started on your Surface device.

How to enter BIOS using the shortcut on the POST screen

On desktop computers, you might see a brief message on the POST screen, when your computer boots up, with instructions on how to access the BIOS. This message is different depending on your hardware or, more accurately, on the motherboard's manufacturer and model. The screenshot below shows the instructions received on a desktop PC with an ASUS motherboard, but you should follow the ones displayed on your device's POST screen.

The message displayed by an ASUS motherboard POST screen

Why did you access the UEFI BIOS on your Windows 10 device?

The vast majority of users never have to enter the UEFI BIOS settings on their Windows 10 PC, laptop, or tablet. That is because any wrong move can have serious consequences, like disabling key components, which can cause your device not to start correctly anymore. Our advice is to be careful whenever you tinker with the BIOS. Before you close this tutorial, let us know if you were successful in reaching BIOS. Did you modify the settings you wanted? What did you change? Let us know in the comments.