By Crystal / Last Updated January 15, 2024

Brief Overview of the "Boot Device Not Found" Error

The "Boot Device Not Found" error is a common occurrence in Windows 11 and can be attributed to various factors. Understanding the root causes is crucial for implementing targeted solutions. This error typically surfaces when the system is unable to locate a bootable device, leaving users stranded at the startup screen.

boot device not found windows 11

Common Causes of Boot Device Not Found Error

Corrupted Boot Configuration Data (BCD): The BCD contains essential information about how the operating system should start. Corruption in this data can lead to the "Boot Device Not Found" error.

Hard Drive Connection Issues: Loose or faulty connections between the hard drive and the motherboard can result in the system's inability to recognize the boot device.

Faulty Boot Device: A malfunctioning hard drive or SSD may be the culprit. Bad sectors, hardware failures, or damaged components can trigger this error.

Outdated or Incompatible Drivers: Using outdated or incompatible storage drivers can cause conflicts, resulting in the boot error.

How to Fix Boot Device Not Found Windows 11 Step by Step

Step 1: Check Physical Connections

Ensure that all cables connecting the hard drive to the motherboard are secure. If using an SSD, confirm that it is properly seated in its slot. Reseating the drive may resolve any connection-related issues.

Step 2: Access BIOS/UEFI Settings

Enter the BIOS or UEFI settings during the system startup. Verify that the boot order is correctly configured to prioritize the drive containing the operating system. Adjust the boot order if necessary.

Step 3: Run Automatic Repair

Windows 11 provides an Automatic Repair option that can fix boot-related issues. Boot from a Windows installation media, choose the repair option, and follow the on-screen instructions.

Step 4: Perform System Restore

If the error occurred after a recent system change or update, performing a system restore to a previous working state might resolve the issue. Navigate to the Advanced Startup Options and choose System Restore.

System Restore and Recovery Options

System restore is a powerful feature that allows you to revert your system to a previous state, effectively undoing recent changes that may have triggered the "Boot Device Not Found" error. Follow these steps to perform a system restore:

1. Access Advanced Startup Options: Restart your system and access the Advanced Startup Options. You can do this by holding down the Shift key while clicking on the Restart option in the Start menu.

2. Choose Troubleshoot: In the Advanced Startup Options, select Troubleshoot.

3. Navigate to System Restore: Choose the System Restore option and follow the on-screen instructions to restore your system to a previous state.

Checking Disk Health

Disk health is paramount for a stable system. Use the built-in Windows tools to check and repair disk issues.

  • Run CHKDSK: Open the Command Prompt as an administrator and run the CHKDSK command to check for and fix disk errors.
  • Use Disk Cleanup: Remove unnecessary files using Disk Cleanup to free up space and potentially address disk-related issues.
  • Check SMART Status: Use third-party tools to check the Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology (SMART) status of your hard drive, identifying potential failures.


Resolving the "Boot Device Not Found" error in Windows 11 requires a systematic approach. By understanding the common causes and following diagnostic steps, you can troubleshoot and resolve this issue effectively. Whether it's addressing connection problems, running system restore, or checking disk health, taking these steps will help ensure a smooth and error-free boot experience on your Windows 11 system.

In conclusion, don't let the "Boot Device Not Found" error disrupt your computing experience. Armed with this comprehensive guide, you can navigate through the troubleshooting process and bring your Windows 11 system back to life. Remember, patience and persistence are key as you work through each step to restore seamless boot functionality.