Boot Configuration Data (BCD) files provide a store that is used to describe boot applications and boot application settings. BCD files replace Boot.ini.

BCDedit is a command-line tool for managing BCD stores. BCDedit can be used for a variety of purposes, including creating new stores, modifying existing stores, and adding boot menu options. The BCDedit tool replaces the Bootcfg.exe in earlier versions of Windows®, and provides two major improvements:


Administrative privileges are required to use BCDedit to modify BCD files.

BCDedit is the primary tool for editing the boot configuration of Windows Vista®, Windows® 7, and Windows Server® 2008. It is installed to the %WINDIR%\System32 folder.

BCDedit is designed primarily to perform single common changes to BCD; for example, enabling debugging, or setting the boot menu order. When working with more complex operations, consider using the BCD Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) application programming interface (API) to create more powerful and flexible custom tools.

Modify the BCD Settings During an Unattended Installation

You can change the BCD settings during an unattended installation by adding a FirstLogonCommands\SynchronousCommand setting in the Microsoft-Windows-Shell component to an answer file. This setting must be configured during the oobeSystem configuration pass.


Do not use the RunSynchronous settings during the specialize configuration pass to run a BCDEdit command. The BCDEdit command might not be applied.

For more information about the syntax of BCDEdit, see BCDEdit Command-Line Options. For more information about FirstLogon commands, see the Windows® Unattended Setup Reference.

See Also