The discussions I have found detail how to boot to a command prompt, but they all have at their starting point the "Advanced Startup Options".
This assumes you have a functional PC that successfully boots so you can access said options.
What do you do when your PC won't boot? Is there a way of getting from power - on to a command prompt as directly as possible?
** Background **
I had a fault that wiped out all my USB devices so at the end of startup I had a functional machine but no keyboard or mouse.
It all started when I updated to WireShark 2.2.1 and decided at the same time to include the USBPCap drivers. When I restarted, the machine (Dell 8700) started as per normal, but when it had finished starting windows the mouse (wireless - works via a USB dongle), and keyboard (wired, USB) were non-functional. I was able to gain control of the PC by TeamViewer and determine via the Device Manager that no USB drivers had loaded.
A bit of web poking around found that this is a known problem with USBCap, but I wanted to back a couple of things up before attempting any fixes so I wanted to boot to a command prompt so I could access some files (a backup of the registry at the time of the last successful Windows startup) that were normally locked under windows.
I have actually got out of the hole by uninstalling USBPCap but I am still wanting to know how and whether booting directly to a command prompt is possible.