Part 1 of this two-part series told how to create a Windows repair disk that boots a failing PC and provides tools that might fix what’s ailing Windows.
Part 2 tells how to use a repair disk on all PCs — including those locked down with Win8’s Secure Boot — and also gives some advanced tips and tricks.
Creating a repair disk is the first step
A good repair disk or drive (collectively, disk) is a fundamental tool for troubleshooting an ailing Windows. Every PC owner/manager should have one for each system — and know where it resides. There are multiple repair-disk options for all versions of Windows, from XP on. Part 1 of this series lists nine, most of them free.
XP requires third-party tools for creating repair disks, and enabling Vista’s built-in app takes some efforts. But both Windows 7 and 8 make the process easy and include numerous troubleshooting tools.
Creating a repair disk is a necessary first step; the next is ensuring the disk correctly boots the PC. Some systems — especially Win8 systems with Secure Boot enabled — take a little prep work.
That’s the starting point for the exercises in this article. You’ll see how to use emergency boot/repair disks to start just about any PC, then use those repair tools included on the disk.
Make an initial test of your emergency disk
If you haven’t yet created an emergency boot/repair disk or drive for your version of Windows, please do so now. See the April 10 Top Story, “Emergency repair disks for Windows: Part 1.”