This post shows students and new users steps to boot into Windows Advanced Startup (WinRE) in Windows 11. The Windows Recovery Environment (WinRE) is a companion operating system installed alongside Windows, typically on a separate partition, that can help troubleshoot, recover, or boot from external media, such as a USB stick.
WinRE is similar to Windows PE (WinPE). You can think of WinPE as the base OS and WinRE as the user interfaces with some recovery tools added.
With WinRE, one can perform the following Advanced startup actions:
- Start Repair (WinRE), troubleshooting, and diagnostic tools.
- Boot from a disk (USB or DVD) or device (UEFI only)
- Access the PC’s UEFI firmware
- Command Prompt can be used for advanced troubleshooting
- System Restore helps restore Windows from the image
- Startup Settings help choose the default operating systems when multiple are installed.
When you boot into Advanced startup mode, Windows should launch support tools menu options. For example, if you select a Windows Recovery Environment (WinRE) feature from this menu, the PC restarts into WinRE, and the selected feature is launched.
How to boot into Windows recovery environment (WinRE) in Windows 11
As mentioned above, Windows Recovery Environment (WinRE) is a companion operating system installed alongside Windows 11, typically in a separate partition, that can help troubleshoot, recover, or boot from external media, such as a USB stick.
There are multiple ways one can access WinRE:
- From the Start menu, select Power then selects and hold down the SHIFT key while selecting Restart.
- In Windows 11, click on Start > Settings > System > Recovery. Under Recovery options, select the Advanced startup tile, then click Restart now.
- Run command prompt as an administrator and type shutdown /r /o.
- By booting to recovery media.
- Note: an easy way to create recovery media is to use the Media Creation Tool or to create a recovery drive and uncheck the Backup system files to the recovery drive option.
- A hardware recovery button (or button combination) is configured by the OEM.
Boot into WinRE via the Settings app.
To get to System Settings, you can use the Windows key + I shortcut or click on Start ==> Settings, as shown in the image below:
Alternatively, you can use the search box on the taskbar and search for Settings. Then select to open it.
Windows Settings pane should look similar to the image below. In Windows Settings, click System > Recovery tile to expand it.
On the System > Recovery settings pane, under Recovery options, click on the Restart Now button on the Advanced startup tile to restart the computer in WinRE mode.
Next, click on Restart now buttons to reboot the machine.
Choose an option. For advanced troubleshooting, click Troubleshoot.
That should do it!
This post showed you how to boot into WinRE in Windows 11. Please use the comment form below if you find any errors above or have something to add.