What Is a Boot Manager On a Computer

When you use the dual operating system on your Windows, every time the Windows Boot Manager screen comes up asking to choose the operating system to start. This is a great way when using dual boot but if you are using only the OS it slows down the boot process.  In this tutorial, we will explain what Windows Boot Manager is and how you can enable or disable the Windows Boot Manager screen in Windows 10.

What is Windows Boot Manager?

Windows Boot Manager commonly known as BOOTMGR is a small piece of software that loads from volume boot code. It is essential for booting windows. Furthermore, the Windows Boot Manager is hidden and located in the root directory. Winload.exe is executed by BOOTMGR essential for the Windows boot process.
Usually, the disk partition that doesn’t have a drive letter and is often labeled as System Reserved has BOOTMGR. If you don’t have a system reserved partition, BOOTMGR will be located on the C drive.

BootMGR is missing is the most common error faced by Windows users.

Now that we know what Windows Boot Manager is, let’s move further to know why we need to disable it and how to disable the Windows Boot Manager.

A bootloader, also spelled as boot loader or called boot manager and bootstrap loader, is a computer program that is responsible for booting a computer. When a computer is turned off, its software‍—‌including operating systems, application code, and data‍—‌remains stored on non-volatile memory.

Windows Boot Manager loads from the volume boot code, which is part of the volume boot record. It helps your Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, or Windows Vista operating system start.

Boot Manager—often referenced by its executable name, BOOTMGR—eventually executes winload.exe the system loader used to continue the Windows boot process

Where Is Windows Boot Manager Located?

Configuration data required for Boot Manager rests in the Boot Configuration Data store, a registry like database that replaced the boot.ini file used in older versions of Windows like Windows XP.

The BOOTMGR file itself is both read-only and hidden. It is located in the root directory of the partition marked as Active in disk management. On most Windows computers, this partition is labeled as System Reserved and doesn’t obtain a drive letter.

If you don’t have a System Reserved partition, BOOTMGR is probably located on your primary drive, which is usually C:.

What does the boot manager do?

A boot manager is a software utility for choosing what operating system to load from a list of operating systems installed on a hard drive

Is Windows Boot Manager necessary?

Windows Boot Manager commonly known as BOOTMGR is a small piece of software that loads from volume boot code. It is essential for booting Windows. Furthermore, the Windows Boot Manager is hidden and located in the root directory.

Additional Information About Boot Manager

A common startup error in Windows is the Bootmgr is missing error.

BOOTMGR, together with winload.exe, replaces the functions performed by NTLDR in older versions of Windows, like Windows XP. Also new is the Windows resume loader, winresume.exe.

When at least one Windows operating system is installed and selected in a multi-boot scenario, the Windows Boot Manager is loaded and reads and applies the specific parameters that apply to the operating system installed to that particular partition.

If the Legacy option is chosen, the Windows Boot Manager starts NTLDR and continues through the process like it would when booting any version of windows that uses NTLDR, like Windows XP. If there’s more than one installation of Windows that’s pre-Vista, another boot menu is given (one that’s generated from the contents of the boot.ini file) so that you can select one of those operating systems.

The Boot Configuration Data store is more secure than the boot options found in previous versions of Windows because it lets users in the Administrators group lock down the BCD store and give out certain rights to other users to determine which ones can manage boot options.

As long as you’re in the Administrators group, you can edit the boot options in Windows Vista and newer versions of Windows using the BCDEdit.exe tool included in those versions of Windows. If you’re using an older version of Windows, the Bootcfg and NvrBoot tools are used instead.

How to Enable/Disable Windows Boot Manager in windows 10

To reduce wait time and to speed up the boot process on Windows 10 use the given methods to disable Windows 10 boot manager.

Method 1: Use Command Prompt

Step 1: Type cmd in the Cortana search box, right-click Command prompt and select run as administrator

Step 2: Enter the following commands one by one in the command prompt window and press the Enter key after entering each command.

  • bcdedit / set {bootmgr} displaybootmenu yes
  • bcdedit / set {bootmgr} timeout 30

Tip: Here, the timeout followed by the number tells for how long the boot manager will be displayed. The timeout value is in seconds.


Step 3: To disable Windows Boot Manager, enter bcdedit / set {bootmgr} timeout 0 and press Enter.

bootmgr disable

Alternatively, to disable BOOTMGR you can use bcdedit / set {bootmgr} displaybootmenu no command and press Enter.

Remember:  If you use the above command you cannot use below Method 2

Method 2: Change System Properties

Editing system properties will help enable or disable the Windows Boot Manager.

Step 1: Press Windows + R to open the Run dialog box.

Step 2: Here, type sysdm.cpl and click OK.


Step 3: This will open the System Properties window. Here select Advanced option > Settings under Startup and Recovery option.

startup recovery

Step 4: Checkmark the option Time to display list of operating systems box and set the time value. Click OK to save the changes.

time to display_bootmanager disable settings

Step 5: To disable BOOTMGR, uncheck Time to display the list of operating systems box or edit the timer to 0 and click OK.

Using these simple steps, you can easily enable or disable Windows Boot Manager on Windows 10. In addition to this, if you are facing a problem with permissions to allow a dual operating system to read further.

Usually, when the secure boot option is enabled you are not allowed to boot Windows when more than 1 OS is installed. Therefore, to allow dual boot you’ll need to disable secure boot.

What is a secure boot?

Secure boot is a feature of the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI), a replacement for BIOS. It is a security gate with a more advanced interface and enough technical options. Secure boot analyses codes before they are executing if a code has genuine digital signatures, Secure Boot will let it pass. However, if the digital signatures are unrecognized it will be blocked by Secure Boot from running and the system will require a restart.

Therefore, to use a dual operating system sometimes you might need to disable Secure Boot. However, keep in mind we do not recommend disabling Secure Boot as it helps keep you safe.

Disabling Secure Boot will allow you to perform the following operations:

  • Booting windows from external device usb, etc.
  • Using Dual OS
  • Booting windows using password recovery tools

Steps to disable Secure Boot on Windows 10

1. Type Advanced Startup in Cortana search bar. Select Change Advanced Startup options.

advanced startup options

2. Now under the Settings window click on Recovery option in the left pane > Restart now under Advanced startup.

Secure boot UEFI boot manager

3. This will restart your Windows 10 in an advanced mode where you will get various advanced options.

Click Troubleshoot.4. Next, click on the Advanced options.5. Here, select UEFI Firmware Settings. This will restart your system click on restart on the next screen.6. Your system will now restart in BIOS. Here click on the security tab under BIOS Settings

7. Choose the Secure Boot option using the up and down arrow key.

8. Next, use the arrow keys to change Secure Boot from Enabled to Disabled.

9. Press enter, save the settings and exit.

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