How do I get to the repair option in Windows 10?

Getting to the repair option in Windows 10 can be helpful for troubleshooting and fixing issues with your operating system. The repair option allows you to access advanced recovery tools to restore Windows to a working state. There are a few different ways to access the repair option, depending on your specific situation.

Accessing the Repair Option from the Sign-In Screen

If Windows 10 is failing to boot properly and you can’t access the desktop, you may need to access the repair option from the sign-in screen. Here are the steps:

  1. Restart your computer and at the sign-in screen, hold down the Shift key while clicking the Power button in the lower right corner.
  2. This will bring up the Advanced startup options screen. Click Troubleshoot.
  3. On the Troubleshoot screen, click Advanced options.
  4. On the Advanced options screen, click Startup Repair. This will begin checking your system for issues and attempt to automatically repair any problems.

Using the repair option from the sign-in screen is useful if Windows is failing to boot properly and you can’t access the desktop. It provides access to Startup Repair and other recovery tools to diagnose and fix boot issues.

Accessing the Repair Option from the Settings App

If you can access the Windows 10 desktop, you can get to the repair option through the Settings app. Here’s how:

  1. Open Settings (Windows key + I)
  2. Click on Update & Security.
  3. Click on Recovery in the left sidebar.
  4. Under Advanced startup, click the Restart now button. Your PC will restart to the Advanced startup options screen.
  5. Click Troubleshoot.
  6. Click Advanced options.
  7. Select the repair option you want to use such as Startup Repair or System Restore.

This method is useful if you can access your desktop but want to use the advanced recovery tools to fix problems like system files errors, startup issues, or corrupted apps.

Accessing the Repair Option from a Windows Installation Media

You can also access the repair option by booting from Windows installation media. Here’s how:

  1. Create a Windows 10 installation tool on a USB drive or DVD.
  2. Connect the installation media and restart your computer.
  3. Boot from the USB or DVD by selecting it in the boot menu.
  4. On the Install Windows screen, click Repair your computer.
  5. Select Troubleshoot.
  6. Click Advanced options.
  7. Choose the recovery tool you want to use such as Startup Repair, System Restore, or Command Prompt.

Using installation media gives you access to repair even if Windows won’t boot. It’s useful for diagnosing and repairing more severe issues like system file corruption or drive errors.

Using Startup Repair

One of the most common repair options to use is Startup Repair. Here’s an overview of how Startup Repair works:

  • Startup Repair will diagnose issues that are preventing Windows from booting properly.
  • It looks for problems with critical system files, boot configuration settings, drive errors, and other issues.
  • If Startup Repair is able to detect and fix the issues, it will automatically repair them and restart your PC.
  • You may need to run Startup Repair multiple times to completely fix the problems.
  • If Startup Repair is unable to fix the issues, it can help identify the problems so you know what fixes need to be attempted.

Startup Repair is a good first step when trying to get Windows booting correctly again. It requires no input and attempts to automatically repair boot issues.

Using System Restore

System Restore is another handy recovery tool available in the repair options. Here’s how it works:

  • System Restore lets you restore Windows back to an earlier point in time, called a restore point.
  • It will reverse system changes and modifications back to the selected restore point.
  • This can be useful for undoing a problematic app install, driver update, or other system change that has caused issues.
  • System Restore preserves user files and data.
  • You can choose a restore point to revert to within the System Restore utility in the repair options.

System Restore is helpful for undoing problematic changes without losing personal files and data. It’s worth trying if a recent update or app install seems to have broken things.

Using the Command Prompt

The repair options also give you access to a Command Prompt for advanced troubleshooting and repair commands. Here are some ways it can be used:

  • You can use specialized commands like bootrec and sfc at the Command Prompt to diagnose and fix issues.
  • The bootrec command has options like FixMBR, FixBoot, and RebuildBCD to repair boot files.
  • sfc /scannow scans system files and can replace corrupted or damaged files.
  • chkdsk checks and repairs hard drive errors.
  • You can also browse file directories and copy data as needed from the Command Prompt.

The Command Prompt provides access to advanced diagnostic and repair commands that aren’t available through the graphical repair tools.

Resetting Windows 10

If none of the repair options are able to fix your issues, a final option is to reset Windows 10 entirely. Here’s an overview:

  • Resetting reinstalls Windows 10 while deleting all of your personal files and apps.
  • An option called “Keep my files” is available which keeps your user files but deletes apps.
  • Resetting essentially gives you a fresh Windows install while retaining your activation status.
  • You’ll need to reinstall any programs you were using after resetting.
  • Resetting can resolve problems that repairs couldn’t, but at the cost of deleting everything.

Resetting Windows is a last resort fix if no other options have resolved your problems. Back up any files you want to keep before resetting.

Third-Party Recovery Tools

There are also third-party system recovery tools available that can be used if the built-in options aren’t sufficient. Examples include:

Tool Description
Recuva File recovery utility that can restore deleted files
Clonezilla Disk imaging tool for making full system backups
Hiren’s BootCD Bootable utility CD with diagnostics and repair tools

These tools provide alternative options for data recovery, backups, diagnostics, and repair operations.


Accessing the repair option in Windows 10 provides important troubleshooting and recovery capabilities. The key methods include using advanced startup, the Settings app recovery options, Windows installation media, and third-party tools. Startup Repair, System Restore, and the Command Prompt give you ways to diagnose and repair many different problems and issues. Resetting Windows 10 can provide a fresh start if repairs aren’t working. With the wide range of built-in and third-party tools available, you have many options to attempt to restore your Windows 10 system to a working state.

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