How to Open Bios Windows 10

Do you wish to learn how to open the BIOS on a Windows 10 computer? If yes, then you have come to the right place. BIOS is an acronym for Basic Input Output System. It’s probably one of those things that most ordinary computer users will never need to learn about. However, there are instances where you may find yourself having to open your computer’s BIOS. Be careful though; changing the wrong things in the BIOS can damage your computer. Make sure that you know what you are doing in there before proceeding. In this article, we are going to;

What is BIOS?

What a Bios chip looks like

In this section, we are going to give you a brief definition of BIOS. What is it? BIOS is software that’s responsible for initializing the hardware on your computer. When you press the power button on your computer, there are certain actions that need to be carried out for your PC to be successfully booted up.

What does BIOS do?

Based on the above, BIOS sounds really important, right? Right! Bios is the first software that runs on a computer when you press on the power button. Without PC BIOS, your computer will not be able to start up. Those Basic Input and Output instructions that are contained on the BIOS chip are the ones that govern the functionality of most pieces of hardware on a computer. The following are the functions of BIOS on a computer;

  • Initializing hardware
  • Carrying out pre-boot security checks
  • Determining the order of boot devices on your computer.
  • BIOS manages the flow of data between your computer’s Operating System and the pieces of hardware that are connected to is; such as printers, faxes, keyboards and the hard drive.

How does it do this?

Above, we have given a basic description of what BIOS does. We noted that it’s essential for initializing pieces of hardware on a computer. But how does this all work? Well, to further clarify issues, we are going to give you a blow by blow outline of how Bios works;

You wake up on a lazy day and you decide to do some work on your computer.

Then you press on the power button.

From there, the magic of the BIOS begins.

It checks to see whether all the attached hardware devices are in place.

Then the BIOS loads your computer’s Operation System.

The OS is loaded onto the RAM, which, by the way, is way faster than the Hard Drive.

So, basically the BIOS checks that everything is fine before doing a handover-takeover with the OS.

Not that the BIOS then goes to sleep. In fact, it continues to act as an interface between the hardware and the OS even after initialization.

Is BIOS important?

Yes, BIOS is absolutely essential to the functioning of a computer. That importance is probably why you are researching how to open Bios on Windows 10. Without it, you will not have any computer at all. Most pieces of hardware that form a computer rely on BIOS to operate in the correct manner.

If you doubt the importance of BIOS, then consider the fact that it’s the first thing that runs on a computer when you press on the start button. Everything else flows from there. Yes, the functions that are initialized may be regarded as “basic,” but they are, nevertheless, crucial.

Can BIOS be customized?

Yes you can customize PC BIOS on your computer, to a limited degree. The limitations are important. If you mess things up in there, then you could very easily brick your computer. BIOS is where it begins as far as running your computer is concerned.

So, it’s important to learn how to open Bios Windows 10 in the correct manner. You would stay away, but there are instances when you need to learn how to open BIOS Windows 10. If you need to change the order of boot devices on your PC, as an example, this can only be done via the BIOS.

How to Open BIOS Windows 10 using the BIOS Key

This is the first and easiest method of opening BIOS on any computer. When you press on the power button on your computer and your PC begins to boot up, you have about 2 seconds in which you can stop the BIOS from automatically initializing the Operation System. To open BIOS in Windows 10, you need to press on the BIOS key within these seconds, before the Operation System has begun to load. The following is how to open Bios Windows 10 using the Bios Key;

  1. Press on the power button on your computer.
  2. As your computer begins to boot up, immediately start pressing on the BIOS key.
  3. Your computer will now load into BIOS.
  4. Note that some computers boot up so quick that you will not be able to get into BIOS, particularly with Fast Boot enabled. So, you need to restart your computer. As the screen turns blank, press on the BIOS key.
  5. You will now be able to get into your Windows 10 BIOS.

What’s the BIOS Key?

That’s how to Open Bios in Windows 10. It would be a simple process, save for the fact that there is no hard and set rule for what the BIOS key is on computers. This is where a lot of people stumble. You will have noticed that while showing you how to open Bios Windows 10 via the Bios key, we avoided telling you what the BIOS key is.

That’s because manufacturers out there use different keys for opening the BIOS on Windows 10 computers. For some reason, there is no standard key for getting this job done. So, if you need to open Windows 10 BIOS on your computer, you are going to have to find out what that is! Or you are going to have press the F keys from F1 to F12 while trying to find the correct one.

Standard BIOS Keys

While that is doable, that is hardly practical. Fortunately, most of the major computer manufacturers out there tend to use the same BIOS key across all their models. The following table shows a list of BIOS keys by manufacturer;

ManufacturerBIOS key(s)
HPF10
AcerDEL or F2
ASUSF2 or Del
DellF2 or F12
LenovoF1
SamsungF2
ToshibaF2
ZotacDel
OriginF2
ECSDel
GigabyteF2 or Del
ASRockF2 or Del
AorusF2 or Del

As you can see in the above table, manufacturers use different keys for getting into the BIOS on Windows 10 computers. Most use the F2 key. However, HP, which is one of the manufacturers out there, uses F10. Below, we are going to show you how to get into the BIOS using F10 Hotkey on HP computers. That’s the machine that we were using when writing this post.

How to open Windows 10 BIOS on an HP computer using the F10 hotkey

The following is how to open the BIOS on an HP computer running on Windows 10;

  • Press on the power button on your computer.
  • Immediately press on the F10 Key.
  • You will now be in your computer’s BIOS. Make changes as you wish.
  • If you cannot seem to press on the BIOS key quick enough, try doing a restart from the start menu.

How to Open BIOS in Windows 10 using Advanced Startup Options

Advanced Options
Advanced Options

This is the second way of Opening BIOS on a Windows 10 computer. The advantage of doing this is that you can get started while your computer is turned on. Remember we noted that it can be challenging to find the BIOS key on a computer. Even if you know what the key is, you can have issues because you need to very quickly press on it to enter your computer’s BIOS. The following is how to Open Windows 10 BIOS via Advanced Startup;

  1. Go to Settings on your computer. You can do this by searching for Settings in the Windows Search Bar. You then need to click on the Settings app that appears in your results.
  2. In the Settings Window, click on Update and Security.
  3. Next, click on Recovery.
  4. From there, you need to click on Restart now.
  5. Your computer will now be rebooted.
  6. Click on Troubleshoot when the reboot is done.
  7. From there, click on Advanced options.
  8. Finally, click on UEFI Firmware Settings.
  9. This will open Bios on your computer and you can make any of the changes that you wish to change.

Disadvantages of this method

This method of how to open BIOS in Windows 10 has one major flaw; sometimes you will not find UEFI Firmware Settings in the Advanced Options Window of Troubleshooting. Should that fail, then you will need to go back to method 1 of opening BIOS on a Windows 10 computer using the BIOS key. So, it’s better to try method 1, which usually works. That’s the easiest way of opening BIOS on your PC. 

Potential issues when opening Windows 10 BIOS

You are likely to encounter a number of issues when it comes to opening the BIOS on your Windows 10 computer. We have already noted some of these challenges in the above discussion on how to open BIOS Windows 10;

One potential issue is that pressing on the BIOS hotkey will not work. Remember we noted that computer manufacturers use different BIOS keys. However, that is not what we are talking about here. Even if you know what the BIOS key for your particular computer is, there are instances when you will still have problems opening the BIOS on your computer.

A major reason for this is that the OS loads up so fast on computers these days that you don’t have the time to press on the Hotkey. This happened to us a couple of times while producing this post. In fact, there were times when we almost simultaneously pressed on the power on and on the F10 buttons (the hotkey for an HP computer). However, that still did not work. Our computer was still going straight to the Windows OS.

We discovered, later that the problem was Windows Fast Startup. When this is enabled, you will notice that your computer quickly jumps to the login page when you press on the power button. So, what’s the solution to this problem?

Well, the solution is simple enough. To open BIOS on your Windows 10 computer, you need to restart your computer, as opposed to shutting it down and then pressing on the power button. To restart your computer, click on Start, then click on the power button and then click on Restart. When you do this, your computer refreshes everything, as opposed to loading preset programs.

You will notice that a restart takes way longer than a normal boot up. So, by doing this, you get the added seconds that you need to get into BIOS using the hotkey. So, again, if you are having problems getting into your PC’s BIOS using the hotkey, the solution is to restart your computer. Press on the hotkey during the process and you should be good to go.

Why would you need to get into your computer’s BIOS?

This article is not simply about how to open BIOS in Windows 10. In this section, we are going to take a look at the motivation. Why bother learning how to open Windows 10 BIOS? There are a number of reasons why you may be looking to get into your Windows 10 computer;

You wish to change Boot order in Boot Options

People usually start looking for information on how to open Bios Windows 10 when they encounter issues with their computers. If you have been failing to get into Windows on your computer, as an example, you may need to use a repair CD or USB to repair Windows on your PC.

change boot order in bios
You can change the boot order in the BIOS

As you can see in the above screenshot, you can play around with which device you want to be first and so on when it comes to loading the OS on your computer. In the above example, an internal CD/DVD drive has been set at number one on the list of boot devices.

That means if you put a bootable CD into your CD/DVD drive, Windows will load that first before going to the Hard Drive. So, it’s probably prudent to always put USB or DVD at number one on the list of boot devices. That way, you can repair your computer via USB should something go wrong with your OS.

You wish to change your fan settings

This is another reason why you may wish to learn how to open BIOS in Windows 10. Fans play an important role on computers. If, for some reason, you wish to change the one on your computer or laptop from Always On to something else, you can do so in the BIOS. Or maybe on your computer the fan is not always on, in which case you can put it on this setting to deal with overheating issues.

You want to test your computer’s Memory/RAM

You may also need to learn how to open Bios Windows 10 if you wish to test your computer’s Memory. This is something that we have already covered on this blog. A computer’s RAM is absolutely essential to its functionality. If you have been encountering issues, RAM is one of the things that you should test first.

You need to test your computer’s Hard Drive

You an test your Hard Drive in the BIOS

Another reason for learning how to open the BIOS in Windows 10 is that you could be looking to test your computer’s hard drive. Again, you can see what we are talking about in the above screenshot. It’s all part of the process of diagnosing problems with your computer. If your PC has become rather slow or if you have been getting the Blue Screen of Death, testing your hard drive would be a way of trying to detect what the problem is. If your hard drive has begun to give you issues, you may need to get a new one.

Perhaps you wish to add a layer of security using the Power-On Password

Most people rely on the Windows password to protect their computers. However, this may not be enough for some people, particularly for those whose computers are used for business purposes. Losing the password in these instances can be damaging. So, what do you do? Well, some people use the Power-On password to add a layer of security to their computers.

power on password
Set a Power on Password in the BIOS

This could be another reason for learning how to open Bios in Windows 10. The Power-On Password can be turned on and off in the BIOS. You can see what we are talking about in the above screenshot. What then happens when you press on the power button on your computer, you will need to enter the POP password before going forward. From there, you will need to enter the Windows password.

Summary

There are many other settings that you can play around with in the BIOS. So, as you can see, learning how to open Bios in Windows 10 can be rather useful. In this article, we showed you how to do it. Getting into the BIOS can be done using the BIOS hotkey. You will need to press on this the second you turn on your computer.

You can also get into BIOS on your computer from the Advanced Start menu. Regarding the hotkey, you may encounter problems of your computer failing to read the key. In the event that this happens, you should restart your computer using restart in Start. Press on the hotkey at the beginning of the restart and you should be able to get into your computer’s BIOS.

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