Bcdedit.exe cannot open boot configuration data, cannot find the specified file – how to fix?

Bcdedit.exe cannot open boot configuration data, cannot find the specified file – how to fix?

When editing the boot parameters of Windows 11, Windows 10, or other versions of the system at the command line using bcdedit.exe, an error may appear: “Cannot open boot configuration data. The specified file cannot be found”, so you will not be able to make the necessary settings.

This manual details how to solve the problem for Windows systems with UEFI or Legacy boot and edit the BCD boot configuration using bcdedit.exe in case you encounter the error in question.

Specifying BCD boot configuration data when using bcdedit.exe

The error “Cannot open boot configuration data. The specified file cannot be found” occurs when bcdedit.exe cannot automatically detect where the BCD boot configuration data is stored, usually in Windows 11 or Windows 10 the problem occurs after using some third-party programs that change boot parameters, such as being added to menus.

The situation can be corrected by manually specifying the path to the BCD file when running the bcdedit.exe commands. The file itself is located in different places, depending on whether the UEFI or Legacy boot type is used.

For Legacy systems installed on an MBR disk:

  1. The boot configuration file is in C:\BootBCD
  2. To change boot configuration parameters, you will need to use the following variant of command typing:
    bcdedit /store C:BootBCD команда_изменения_parameters
  3. It may also make sense to specify which boot record it applies to, usually the default boot record. An example of a command for this case is the following:
    bcdedit /store C:BootBCD /set {default} safeboot minimal

For UEFI systems, the boot configuration is located on a hidden FAT32 partition in EFIMicrosoftBootBCD and to specify this path when executing the commands, you will first need to assign a drive letter for this partition. The complete route will consist of the following steps:

  1. Run the command prompt as administrator and enter the commands
    diskpart list volume
  2. In the list of volumes, find the EFI bootloader system FAT32 volume number. Next is N.
  3. Use the commands (letter X can be changed to another drive letter):
    select volume N assign letter=X exit
  4. We now have a drive letter (X in my case) for the bootloader partition. And we can execute the bcdedit commands as follows:
    bcdedit /store X:EFIMicrosoftBootBCD команда_изменения_parameters
  5. As in the previous case, it may make sense to specify a specific bootstrap element to which you want to apply the parameters, usually {default}. Final command example:
    bcdedit /store X:EFIMicrosoftBootBCD /set {default} loadoptions DISABLE_INTEGRITY_CHECKS

Once you've made the necessary changes, you can hide the bootloader partition again. Use steps 1 to 3, replacing the penultimate command with the letter remove=X


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