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I have a computer that came with Windows 8 preinstalled. I want to boot from a CD, in this case Hiren's Boot CD. However Windows 8 doesn't seem to like this.

I have tried pressing F8, ESC, F12 and so on. I read online that Windows 8 can boot in 200ms, so that it might not even be possible to boot from a Live CD before Windows loads.

I would like to know how to boot from a CD before Windows loads, if possible. If not possible, how to boot from the Live CD after Windows loads.

After further tinkering I was able to get to the BIOS using F2. I changed the settings to boot from CD first, and I even disabled "Secure Boot". The computer seems to ignore these settings and booted Windows anyway. I was also able to access the "Boot Menu" using F12.

I choose "CD drive". It did a "media check" on the CD even though I disabled Secure Boot, and the check failed; again it booted Windows after that!

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will it boot from another known bootable cd/dvd? – Moab Oct 19 '12 at 1:27
Is the CD designed to be booted in a UEFI environment? – Darth Android Oct 19 '12 at 18:36
up vote 8 down vote accepted

While running Windows, hold Shift as you click on Restart under Power in the Settings charm to access the boot menu once you restart your computer. From this boot menu, you can enter the UEFI firmware setup utility. More information.

Windows 8 will automatically start the Startup Repair Tool if it detects it cannot boot after two consecutive attempts, and will open the boot menu if it detects that the system has restarted twice in quick succession (in order to handle situations where the boot sequence completes, but the system remains unusable).

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This is good information, but ideally I would like to boot from a CD without having to go through Windows first. – Steven Penny Oct 18 '12 at 23:46
A modern UEFI-based Windows 8 system clears POST too quickly to allow this. That's why this functionality exists. – bwDraco Oct 18 '12 at 23:48

Just change the boot type to Legacy. Worked for me and you won't have to go through Windows. I know it's a late information, but might be useful for others.

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This would make a hdd larger then 3TB unable to be used as the boot drive. The only proper way in the author's case is to use Windows to access the UEFI BIOS screen. – Ramhound Feb 20 '13 at 14:03
This is the only way I was able to boot Linux CD. – bancer Jul 11 '13 at 22:35

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