System Change Default Operating System to Run at Startup in Windows 11


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Default_OS_banner.png

If you have more than on operating system installed on your computer, you will see a boot options menu at startup to Choose an operating system.

The default boot entry is the entry that the boot loader selects when the boot menu time-out expires. You can change the default boot entry to ensure that the operating system you prefer is loaded automatically at startup.

The last operating system installed will be the default OS in the boot menu by default.

See also:

This tutorial will show you how to change the default operating system to run at startup in Windows 10 and Windows 11.


Contents

  • Option One: Change Default Operating System to Run at Startup in Boot Options
  • Option Two: Change Default Operating System to Run at Startup in System Properties
  • Option Three: Change Default Operating System to Run at Startup in System Configuration (msconfig)
  • Option Four: Change Default Operating System to Run at Startup in Command Prompt


EXAMPLE: Default OS listed first in boot options menu

Boot_options_menu.png





Option One

Change Default Operating System to Run at Startup in Boot Options


1 While on the Choose an operating system at boot, click/tap on the Change defaults or choose other options link. (see screenshot below)

Change_default_OS_boot_options_menu-1.png

2 Click/tap on Choose a default operating system. (see screenshot below)

Change_default_OS_boot_options_menu-2.png

3 Click/tap on an available operating system (ex: "Windows 11") you want as the default. (see screenshot below)

Change_default_OS_boot_options_menu-3.png

4 Click/tap on the back arrow button. (see screenshot below)

Change_default_OS_boot_options_menu-4.png

5 Click/tap on the OS (ex: "Windows 11") you want to run now. (see screenshot below)

Change_default_OS_boot_options_menu-5.png




Option Two

Change Default Operating System to Run at Startup in System Properties


You must be signed in as an administrator to use this option.


1 Open System Properties (sysdm.cpl).

2 Click/tap on the Advanced tab, and click/tap on Settings for "Startup and Recovery". (see screenshot below)

Change_default_OS_System_Properties-1.png

3 Select the OS (ex: "Windows 11") you want in the Default operating system drop menu, and click/tap on OK. (see screenshot below)

Change_default_OS_System_Properties-2.png

4 Click/tap on OK. (see screenshot below)

Change_default_OS_System_Properties-3.png




Option Three

Change Default Operating System to Run at Startup in System Configuration (msconfig)


You must be signed in as an administrator to use this option.


1 Open System Configuration (msconfig.exe).

2 Perform the following actions: (see screenshot below)
  1. Click/tap on the Boot tab.
  2. Select the OS (ex: "Windows 11") you want as default.
  3. Click/tap on the Set as default button.
  4. Click/tap on OK.
Change_default_OS_msconfig-1.png

3 Click/tap on Exit without restart since a restart is not required to apply. (see screenshot below)

Change_default_OS_msconfig-2.png




Option Four

Change Default Operating System to Run at Startup in Command Prompt


1 Open an elevated command prompt or command prompt at boot.

You must be signed in as an administrator to open an elevated command prompt.


2 Copy and paste the bcdedit command into the command prompt, and press Enter. (see screenshot below step 3)

3 You can look under the top Windows Boot Loader section to see what the default entry shows as the identifier (ex: "{default}") for the current default OS. (see screenshot below)

Change_default_OS_command-1.png

4 Look under the Windows Boot Loader section for the Windows 11 "description" you want to be the default OS to see what its identifier (ex: "{current}") is. (see screenshot below step 5)

5 Type the command below into the command prompt, and press Enter. (see screenshot below)

bcdedit /default {identifier}

Substitute {identifier} in the command above with the actual identifier (ex: "{current}") from step 4.

For example: bcdedit /default {current}


Change_default_OS_command-2.png



That's it,
Shawn Brink


 

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Last edited:

Hans Schuster

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"You must be signed in as an administrator to use this option." Gotcha, but how?
 

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    Dell OptiPlex 3090
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Brink

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"You must be signed in as an administrator to use this option." Gotcha, but how?
Hello Hans, and welcome. :-)

Do you have an administrator account to sign in to, or are you unable to sign in?
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
    Computer type
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    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self build
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
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    16 GB (8GBx2) G.SKILL TridentZ DDR4 3200 MHz
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    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING
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    2 x Samsung Odyssey G75 27"
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    1TB Samsung 990 PRO M.2,
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    Seasonic Prime Titanium 850W
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  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
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    HP Spectre x360 2in1
    CPU
    i7-1065G7 3.9 GHz
    Memory
    16 GB LPDDR4-3200
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    Intel Iris Plus
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    Intel SST
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    13.3" 4K UWVA AMOLED multitouch
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    512 GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
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    Windows Defender and Malwarebytes Premium

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