On Windows 11, you have more than one way to access the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) on your motherboard, and in this guide, you will learn how.
The UEFI is the modern interface that replaces the legacy Basic Input Output System (BIOS). Although both firmware types are essential as they're responsible for basic hardware configuration and transferring the boot sequence to Windows 11, UEFI includes additional benefits, such as faster boot times, support for larger storage drives, better security, and more.
Usually, you don't have to worry about changing the settings within the motherboard's firmware, but sometimes, it's necessary to turn a specific feature on or off (such as virtualization), troubleshoot a hardware problem, manage the system cooling fans, and more.
Regardless of the reason, on a device running Windows 11, you can access the UEFI (sometimes also referred to as the BIOS) in at least two ways, including through the Settings app when the operating system is running or through the keyboard during the startup process.
This how-to guide will walk through the steps to quickly access the UEFI firmware from Windows 11.
How to get into UEFI (BIOS) on Windows 11 from Settings
To access the UEFI firmware on your computer, use these steps:
- Open Settings.
- Click on System.
- Click the Recovery page on the right side.
- Click the Restart now button from the "Advanced startup" setting.
- Click the Restart now button again.
- Click on Troubleshoot.
- Click on Advanced options.
- Choose the "UEFI Firmware settings" option.
- Click the Restart button.
Once you complete the steps, Windows 11 will reboot the computer into the UEFI firmware, where you can configure many of the different features available on the motherboard, which can include setting up hardware virtualization, managing secure boot and TPM settings, configuring storage settings, change the boot order for devices, and more.
How to get into UEFI (BIOS) on Windows 11 from boot
Alternatively, it's possible to access the motherboard firmware from outside the operating system environment using special keys during startup.
To access the UEFI on the motherboard from boot, use these steps:
- Press the Power button.
- Confirm the key to press to enter the firmware (if applicable).
- Hit the required key repeatedly until you enter the setup mode.
- Quick note: Typically, you have to press one of the Function keys (F1, F2, F10, etc.) or the "ESC," or the "Delete" key.
After you complete the steps, the computer should start in the firmware instead of loading Windows 11.
If you're not able to identify the key to press to access the motherboard's firmware, you may need to check with your manufacturer's documentation to determine the shortcut that you should be using.
You can also check this list with some of the popular brands and the keys you can use to access the UEFI firmware:
- HP: ESC or F10.
- Dell: F2 or F12.
- Acer: F2 or Delete.
- ASUS: F2 or Delete.
- Toshiba: F2.
- Samsung: F2.
- Lenovo: F1 or F2.
- MSI: Delete.
- Surface: Press and hold the volume up.
If you can't figure out the key that accesses your firmware, it's best to use the option available on Windows 11.
For more helpful articles, coverage, and answers to common questions about Windows 10 and Windows 11, visit the following resources:
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Mauro Huculak is technical writer for WindowsCentral.com. His primary focus is to write comprehensive how-tos to help users get the most out of Windows 10 and its many related technologies. He has an IT background with professional certifications from Microsoft, Cisco, and CompTIA, and he's a recognized member of the Microsoft MVP community.