Winload.efi is a really important file in Windows 10, where the EFI stands for Extensible Firmware Interface file. As the name suggests, these are UEFI firmware based executable files. The primary work associated to this is preparing the computer bootloader by loading certain files to the bootloader component.
The Winload.efi files are used to run a very specific set of tasks related to your computer booting up. These include turning on and shutting down your computer, resetting the computer, reinstalling the operating system etc. When this file becomes corrupted or missing from your computer, you cannot boot into Windows operating system.
The error codes associated with winload.efi missing are 0xc0000225, 0xc00000e and 0xc0000001.
[SOLVED] File: Windows\System32\Winload.Efi Missing
Winload.efi is responsible for starting and turning off your PC. If this file goes missing, you cannot boot into Windows 10 at all. Hence to fix this error, you need to solve this error using the recovery environment. Here are some simple solutions that you can use to solve the winload.efi missing error in Windows 10.
Solution 1: Rebuild BCD
Boot Configuration Data is a firmware independent database file which has the boot-time configuration data. Windows Boot manager uses the data in this file to load into Windows 10. You can use the command prompt to open a tool called bootrec.exe which is generally used to resolve boot related issues with your system.
However, since you may be stuck at boot, you need to open Command Prompt from the boot screen itself, without turning on your computer. To do that on Windows 10, you need a recovery media.
- Download and burn the Windows file from their website onto a flash drive or a CD if your device has an optical disk reader.
- Click on Repair your computer. This will take you to Advanced Options.
- Here, select Command Prompt.
- In the command prompt, run the following commands one after another:
- Close the cmd window with the following command:
- Restart your computer.
Now check if you are able to boot into Windows normally. If not, try some other solutions which can help you solve the error.
Solution 2: Use SFC Scan
You can check for broken files and fix them using an inbuilt tool for this purpose. However, to use SFC using offline files, you need to specify the path of the system drive.
To know more about using SFC scans, you can follow our dedicated article that can help you solve if you have broken system files on your computer. You can use this tool to repair missing or corrupted system files, and hence this can be used to solve missing winload.efi error as well.
- Open command prompt just as shown in the solution above.
- Now type the following command and press Enter to launch a full system scan:
sfc /scannow /offboot=c:\ /offwindir=c:\windows
- Leave the command prompt window open.
Depending on your system, the scan may take around 5-20 minutes to complete. Once the scan completes, restart your device.
Solution 3: Disable Secure Boot
While booting into Windows, if the secure boot feature is enabled, it will cross check with the bootloader whether it is signed with a cryptographic key authorized by the database that is contained in the firmware. You may fail to boot into Windows 10 if there is a key mismatch in the secure boot feature.
You can turn off Secure boot to solve the winload.efi missing error in Windows 10. This can be turned off from the BIOS settings.
- Boot into BIOS. For this, continuously press the BIOS key (usually F2 or Del) on the startup, when the manufacturer logo shows up.
- Locate the Secure Boot It is usually under the Security, Boot, or Authentication tab. This changes according to the BIOS make and version.
- Set the Secure Boot to Off or Disabled according to your BIOS.
- Next, set Legacy Support to On or Enabled.
- Ensure that your hard disk is the first boot device.
- Save the changes and restart the computer.
Now check if you are able to boot into Windows normally. If a key mismatch was preventing you from loading into Windows, this should solve the winload.efi missing Windows 10 error.
Solution 4: Disable Early Launch Anti-Malware Protection
Another way to solve the “Windows 10 winload.efi missing” error is by disabling the Early Launch Anti-Malware Protection service.
To do this, you need to boot into Advanced Startup Options. You can boot into Recovery Environment by repeatedly turning on your PC and turning it off by holding the power key as soon as the manufacturer logo shows up. You need to repeat this cycle thrice, after which you will be able to boot into Recovery Environment.
- First, go into Advanced Startup Options as stated by Microsoft.
- Navigate the following path, by clicking on the following items:
Troubleshoot > Advanced Options > Startup Settings
- Locate and click on “Disable early launch anti-malware protection”.
- Restart your PC.
Disabling Early Launch anti-malware protection should solve your problem.
Solution 5: Repair EFI Bootloader
If your copy of Windows was installed in the native UEFI mode on a GPT disk, you could attempt to repair the EFI bootloader if the above solutions failed to help you. Simply follow these steps:
- Open the command prompt as shown in solution 1 of this post.
- Execute the following commands and press Enter after each one of them:
- diskpart – enter the diskpart environment
- list volume – list the partitions on the storage disk
- In the list of available partitions, locate the one that is labeled ESP or EFI with a size of approximately 100MB.
- To select this partition, enter the following command:
select volume N
Replace N with the drive number of your volume
- Assign a drive letter to the partition by entering the following command:
- Exit the diskpart utility by using the exit command.
- Recreate the bootloader by copying the boot files from the Windows directory by using the following command:
bcdboot c:\Windows /s Z: /f ALL
- Wait for the copy to complete and reboot your device.
Now check if you are able to boot into Windows. Your winload.efi missing error should now be resolved.
So, there you have it. Now you know what the winload.efi file is, and how to solve if this file goes missing from your operating system. Comment below if you found this useful, and tell us how you solved the error on your device.