If the configuration of the system's registry or driver creates a conflict that prevents the system from starting, Windows may encounter problems during startup. Booting the Windows into last known good configuration is the best way to solve the issue. Now, read this post from MiniTool to learn about the details.
About the Last Known Good Configuration
What Is the Last Known Good Configuration
In NT and later versions of the Windows operating system, when the system successfully starts, you can obtain a copy of the system hardware configuration and driver settings from the system registry.
If the subsequent boot process fails, the copy will be stored. Then the last known good configuration’s record will be used by the operating system to perform a successful boot. If Windows detects a problem during the startup process, the "Last Known Good Configuration" option will be added to the startup menu.
Problems Can Be Fixed by Last Known Good Configuration
The problems that can be repaired by booting into last known good configuration are as follows:
1. The blue screen of death at startup caused by the driver update.
2. The unsuccessful boot caused by the newly applied Windows update or automatic updates.
3. The PC’s abnormal startup sequence caused by viruses, trojans, and rootkits.
4. The conflicts between newly installed hardware and other devices.
5. The conflicts between newly-installed software and other programs.
Problems Cannot Be Fixed by Last Known Good Configuration
However, not all of the Windows issues can be resolved by booting Windows into the last known good configuration. In particular, it will not help if you encounter these issues below:
1. Programs crashing at random.
2. Computer running slow or other bad performance. Maybe you are interested in this post - 10 Reasons for PC Runs Slow with Windows 10/8/7.
3. Driver-related issues that you’ve been experiencing for several days.
Boot Windows into the Last Known Good Configuration
Just now, you have known some basic information of the last known good configuration. Now, you may wonder how to boot into last known good configuration Windows 10/7. Keep on your reading.
How to Boot into the Windows 7 Last Known Good Configuration
If you want to use the Windows 7 last known good configuration option, follow the steps below. On the other hand, if you wonder how to use last known good configuration Windows 10, you can jump to the next section.
Step 1: Fully power your computer off. Make sure that your PC is entirely turned off and not running anymore.
Step 2: Restart your computer and then wait for the screen with the logo of the manufacturer to pass.
Step 3: Repeatedly press F8 (or another key/key combination) as soon as the logo disappears.
Step 4: If you see the Windows loading screen, go back to the first step and repeat until you enter the Advanced Boot Options window.
Step 5: Use the arrow keys on your keyboard to select Last Known Good Configuration (advanced) from the list of available options.
Step 6: Press Enter and wait for the process to complete. You should be able to boot into the system now.
Here are all the steps of entering into Windows 7 last known good configuration.
How to Boot into the Last Known Good Configuration Windows 10
The last known good configuration option is not provided in Windows 8 and Windows 10. Instead, there are other options like refresh, reset (reinstall), restore, etc. You can simply boot your PC to enter Safe Mode. It’s an alternative to the last known good configuration.
Safe Mode is a built-in diagnostic mode of Windows 10 (7, 8, etc.) computer operating system. If you start Windows 10 PC to Safe Mode, it will only allow starting up basic system programs and services in the booting process. Here is information on how to boot Windows 10 in Safe Mode.
Clean Boot vs. Safe Mode: what’s the difference, when and how to use? After reading this post, you can clearly know all the answers to these questions.
You should restart your PC several times to boot to WinRE (Windows Recovery Environment) to enter into Safe Mode. You can also use Windows 10 recovery bootable media like a DVD/USB bootable drive to enter WinRE. Here are the steps:
Step 1: Insert your Windows installation CD/DVD or USB bootable drive to your computer, and start the computer.
Step 2: Enter the BIOS. If you don’t know how to do that, read this post - How to Enter BIOS Windows 10/8/7 (HP/Asus/Dell/Lenovo, any PC).
Step 3: Choose the DVD or USB flash drive as the first boot device and boot the Windows 10 PC from the device.
Step 4: Click Repair your computer to enter into WinRE successfully.
Now, you can continue to enter Safe Mode.
Step 1: From the Choose an option screen, click the Troubleshoot option.
Step 2: Next, click Advanced Options. Click the Startup Settings option.
Step 3: Click the Restart button.
Step 4: Then you will see multiple options for startup. Press the F4 key to enable Safe Mode.
Now your PC will start in Safe Mode. Then you can troubleshoot your system without issues.
You can also perform a system restore via WinRE that is an alternative to the last known good configuration option. Here is how to do that:
Step 1: Enter WinRE.
Step 2: You should click Troubleshoot in Choose an option, and then choose Advanced options.
Step 3: Choose System Restore in the Advanced options window.
Step 4: Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the restore.
Windows 10 System Restore stuck on initializing or restoring files? This post gives helpful ways to fix System Restore stuck issue in 2 cases.
Here is how to use the Windows 10 last known good configuration alternative.
Back up the System to Safeguard Your Computer
After you fix your computer’s error, I have a suggestion for you. In case of something wrong with your system, it is recommended to back up your system in advance. Now, I will introduce a piece of free backup software for you - MiniTool ShadowMaker.
MiniTool ShadowMaker provides a one-click system backup solution. It supports backing up your system drive completely, including system partition, system reserved partition and EFI system partition. And you can image all of your data including computer settings, applications, drivers, system files and boot files.
The system backup is bootable. When the system crashes, you can restore your computer to a normal state. This post - How to Restore Computer to Earlier Date in Windows 10/8/7 (2 Ways) may be the one you need.
MiniTool ShadowMaker provides Trial Edition that gives you a 30-day free trial for all backup features. You can purchase its Pro Edition to use it permanently.
Now you can download MiniTool ShadowMaker Trial Edition to back up your system.
Now, let's see how to back up your Windows system.
Step 1: Decide a Backup Mode
1. Launch MiniTool ShadowMaker and keep using the Trial E
2. Please choose the computer to manage and click Connectin the Local section to enter the main interface.
Step 2: Choose the Backup Source
1. Go to the Backup page.
2. This software selects the system partition and system reserved partition by default.
Step 3: Choose a Destination Path to Store Your System
1. You can back up your system to an external hard drive, USB flash drive, NAS and more.
2. Then choose a destination path to store your system and click OK. Here I take the New Volume (E)as an example.
1. Please do not save a volume image file to the volume being backed up.
2. The destination that is used to store the system must have enough storage space.
Step 4: Start to Back up
1. Go back to the following interface.
2. You have two options: click Back up Now to start the backup process immediately or click Back up Later to delay the backup process.
When the process is finished, you have backed up your system successfully with MiniTool ShadowMaker.
To sum up, this post has introduced what the last known good configuration is and shown the methods to enter Windows 7/10 into it. If your computer encounters some issues, you can try the last known good configuration to fix them.
After fixing your issues, it is recommended you back up your system. If you have any problem when using MiniTool program, please feel free to contact us via the email [email protected] and we will reply to you as soon as possible.