I often switch out of Windows 8 to Linux on another partition, but it's awkward :

  • Windows + I
  • Shift + click restart
  • click Troubleshoot
  • click Advanced options
  • click UEFI firmware settings

and only then can I navigate through the BIOS and rearrange the boot order then exit saving changes...

Is there any way I can automate this? I was thinking there must be some command surely to access UEFI firmware settings...?


You can try BootNext tool allows direct booting to Linux from Windows 7/8 (or any installed OS) on UEFI or BIOS firmware.

As bonus the tool allows also easy creation of Windows safe mode loaders, booting them as well as boot to recovery. Also direct reboot to UEFI setup.


It's not 100% clear how your system is set up, but I suspect you've got Windows installed in EFI/UEFI mode and Linux installed in BIOS/CSM/legacy mode. If so, the best solution is to install an EFI-mode boot loader for Linux. Several are available. The two easiest approaches in your situation are:

  • Download the USB flash drive or CD-R version of my rEFInd boot manager and prepare a boot medium with it. Boot with it. You should see the rEFInd menu, which should show you at least one option for both Windows and Linux. Test them both. If you can boot to both OSes, install rEFInd in Linux. (The rEFInd downloads page has links to .zip, RPM, and Debian packages; use whichever is best for your distribution.) Thereafter, you should see rEFInd by default when you reboot in EFI mode, and you should be able to boot either Linux or Windows.
  • If you're using Ubuntu or a similar distribution, you can use the Boot Repair tool to get GRUB set up in EFI mode. This tool must be run from EFI mode to do this properly, though, so you'll need to boot an emergency disk in EFI mode. Since you installed in BIOS mode, this may not be obvious or natural, and the details of how to do it vary from one computer to another. Also, if Boot Repair messes up, you can end up in a worse state than you're in now. Finally, I don't recommend this approach if you're using Fedora, OpenSUSE, or some other distribution that's not closely related to Ubuntu. It might work with such distributions, but it was designed for Ubuntu.

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