Boot Sequence Change

For most purposes, you will probably want the boot sequence to boot your computer into the Windows Operating System. Accordingly, computers are commonly set up so that Windows loads ‘by default’ (meaning: that is what the computer will do unless told otherwise).

Sometimes, you may want the computer to load a different operating system, such as from a floppy disk or CD. For example, if Windows was misbehaving or had become damaged you might choose to use a ‘rescue disk’ - a floppy or CD with its own operating system - so that you could make repairs or save valuable files.

This topic shows you how to change or override your computer’s default settings.

During the Second Boot Screen, your computer scans the hardware looking for a media disk (floppy, hard disk, etc.). It assumes that any disk it finds will have an Operating System . The order in which it checks the hardware is called the ‘Boot Sequence’. Depending on your computer, you may be able to either:

  • Change the boot sequence in BIOS Setup, then restart the computer; or
  • Choose the boot drive ‘on the fly’ (during normal boot routine) .

Changing the Boot Sequence in BIOS Setup: BIOS (Basic Input/OutputSystem) is what controls your computer’s hardware. To enter BIOS Setup, press the appropriate key during the First Boot Screen. In most computers, this will be the DEL (delete) key. If not, try F2. If you press the right key, you will enter BIOS Setup.

  • Inside BIOS Setup, your mouse won’t work. So you will have to use the keyboard instead. All your options for moving and changing things will be displayed on a menu.
  • If you wish to look without changing anything, choose the ‘Exit without Saving’ option. If you choose the ‘Save changes and Exit’ option, then any changes you have made will be saved and will be used whenever you boot up your computer.
  • Important: Don’t change anything except the boot sequence unless you are certain you know what you are doing. Changing it cannot cause any major problems - but other changes can sometimes cause great mischief.


Changing the Boot Sequence on the Fly: Some computers allow you to choose the boot sequence as the computer boots. At some time, usually (but not always) during the First Boot Screen, press (F10) or (F12). This will cause the bootup procedure to pause, and icons of any alternative disks (floppy, CD, etc) to appear. Use the arrow keys to choose one of these icons, and press (enter).






Obtain a bootable floppy or CD, and experiment on your own computer with changing its boot sequence.









"Can I call you back? We just bought a new computer, and we’re trying to set it up before it’s obsolete.”






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To return Home from boot sequence

DSCC Meetings

Monthly meetings are held at the Casuarina Library on the first Saturday of each month (except January) at 2.00pm.

Come along to hear the latest computer news, learn some tricks or ask questions about any computer related subjects.