by Jack Chen, Taos Senior Technical Consultant
You might have found out that you are no longer able to find Boot.ini and Ntldr in your Windows 8.1, 8 and 7 operating systems. Frustrated? Don’t worry because Microsoft has redesigned the boot configuration to the newer versions.
The Boot Configuration Data (BCD) store replaces the text-based Boot.ini file. In the BCD store, the Windows boot manager, the Windows boot loader, and other boot applications are now represented as program objects (GUIDs) instead of text items. Don’t worry! If you do not like using BCD edit.exe, you can still use Msconfig.exe with the local administrative privileges to launch a Gui for viewing and modifying a subset of the boot configuration settings. It is that cool 🙂
What are those new boot applications? Ntldr.exe is now separated into multiple applications including Bootmgr, Winload, and Winresume.
- Boot Manager (Bootmgr.exe or Bootmgr.efi) – It is independent of the OS and uses the firmware to load the Windows boot loader either from a particular disk partition or over a network connection in the case of network boot 🙂
- Windows Boot Loader (Winload.exe or Winload.efi) – It is part of the OS and loads a specific version of Windows. It uses the firmware to load the OS kernel and to boot critical device drivers from a local hard disk.
- Windows Resume (Winresume.exe or Winresume.efi) – It finds a hibernation image and then uses the firmware to read the hibernation file into RAM and to resume the OS from the hibernation state.
- Windows Memory Tester (Memdiag.exe or Memdiag.efi) – You can start this diagnostic tool from the boot manager to verify that RAM is working correctly.
Hopes this information could somehow help you diagnose boot issues to the operating system.