If you have multiple versions of Windows on your PC and prefer one over the others, you can make that preferred operating system (OS) the default so that it always loads automatically. We will show you how to do it.
Please note that this guide only works if you have installed multiple Windows operating systems on your PC. If you have a Windows and Linux dual boot system, check out our GRUB2 guide to learn how to configure the default operating system for you.
To set the default operating system to a dual boot system, Windows 10 offers two ways. They both work the same and you can continue with either.
Set the default operating system from system properties in Windows 10
One way to select an operating system as the default in Windows 10 is through the System Properties window.
To use this method, first, open the “Run” box by pressing Windows + R.
In the “Run” box, type the following and press Enter:
Windows 10 will open a “System Properties” window. In this window, in the “Startup and Recovery” section, click the “Settings” button.
In the “Startup and Recovery” window that opens, click the “Default operating system” drop-down menu and select the operating system you want to set as the default.
Then, at the bottom of the “Startup and Recovery” window, click “OK”.
Suggestion: To make Windows load your default operating system faster, reduce the duration time in the “Time to display the list of operating systems” box.
In the “System Properties” window at the bottom, click “OK” to close the window.
And that’s it. Your selected operating system is now the default operating system on your PC. Windows will automatically load this operating system when turn on your computer .
Set the default operating system from system settings in Windows 10
Another way to configure the default operating system in Windows 10 is through the system configuration tool.
To use it, first open the “Start” menu and search for “System Settings.” Then click on the tool in the search results.
In the “System Settings” window, at the top, click on the “Startup” tab.
On the “Boot” tab, from the large white box at the top, select the operating system you want to set as the default. Then, under the white box, click “Set as default”.
This “Startup” tab is also where you can boot your PC in safe mode .
Next to the selected operating system, a “Default OS” label will appear. This indicates that your default operating system was configured correctly.
Save your changes by clicking “Apply” and then “OK” at the bottom of the “System Settings” window.
You will see a message asking you to restart your PC. You don’t have to do it right away if you need to save open files and close running programs. In this case, click the “Exit without restarting” option in the message.
If you agree with restart your pc , select the “Restart” option instead.
Are you ready. Windows now knows your default operating system and will load it on all your future boots. Very useful!