How to Enable the F8 key in Windows 10/8 OS.

Last updated on October 29th, 2019

This tutorial contains instructions on how to enable the F8 key on Windows 10/8.1/8, in order to access the 'Advanced Boot Options menu' and to start Windows in Safe Mode, Safe Mode with Networking, Safe Mode with command prompt, etc., if needed.

Windows 8 and Windows 10 are designed with a new boot loader that allows the OS to load faster. To accomplish this, Microsoft has removed the ability to access the advanced boot options menu by pressing the F8 key before the operating system loads. But, from my experience, the ability to start Windows in safe mode using the F8 key, is very useful, especially in cases where Windows fails to boot normally.

In this tutorial, I will show you how to enable the F8 boot options key in Windows 10 and Windows 8/8.1 OS. *

* Note: Keep in mind that after enabling the F8 key, the loading time of Windows will be increased by 1-2 seconds, but in my opinion, this is worth it, because it is more important to be ready to troubleshoot Windows problems when needed.

How to Enable the F8 key (Advanced Options menu) in Windows 10, 8.1, 8 OS.

1. Open Command Prompt as Administrator. To do that:

1. In the Search box type: cmd or command prompt
2. Right click on the command prompt (result) and select Run as Administrator.

command prompt administrator

2. Inside the command prompt window, type the following command and press Enter:

  • bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy legacy  


After the command execution, you should see a message that says that “The operation completed successfully”.


3. Now restart your computer for the changes to take effect.
4. From now on, you should be able to enter into the 'Advanced Boot Options' menu by pressing the F8 key on your keyboard before the Windows logo appears on the screen. *

* Notice: In the case that you want to disable the F8 key just perform the same operation, but this time at the command prompt window type:

  • bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy standard


That's it! Let me know if this guide has helped you by leaving your comment about your experience. Please like and share this guide to help others.

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