Hide Entries in the Boot.ini
How do I hide entries in the Boot.ini file so that they’re not visible when I boot my computer?
You can hide additional installations of Windows from being displayed in the boot menu, but still gain access to them when you need to.
To hide menu items from the Boot.ini file, so they will not be accessible:
- Remove the read-only attribute from the Boot.ini file.
- Use an editor to edit the Boot.ini file.
- Place the following entry above the lines you want hidden:
[any text]. This will hide all entries below the [any text] heading.
Passwords Haven’t Disappeared Yet
123456. Qwerty. Iloveyou. No, these are not exercises for people who are brand new to typing. Shockingly, they are among the most common passwords that end users choose in 2021. Research has found that the average business user must manually type out, or copy/paste, the credentials to 154 websites per month. We repeatedly got one question that surprised us: “Why would I ever trust a third party with control of my network?
- To restore the entry and make it accessible again, remove the [any text] line.
- Save the file and reapply the read-only attribute.
- Restart your computer.
For example, the 3 bottom entries below will not be displayed or accessible the next time the system is restarted. Simply remove [any text] to gain access to this installation.
[boot loader] timeout=30 default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)'NT351SVR [operating systems] multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)'NT351SVR="NT Server 3.51" multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)'NT351SVR="NT Server 3.51 [VGA mode]" /basevideo /sos [any text] multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)'WINNT35="NT Wks 3.51" multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)'WINNT35="NT Wks 3.51 [VGA mode]" /basevideo /sos] C:'="MS-DOS"
Another method for hiding the entries but having access to them at another time is to create a boot disk. To do so, follow these instructions:
- Format a floppy disk in Windows.
- Copy ntldr, Ntdetect.com, and the Boot.ini file to the root of the floppy disk.
- Edit the Boot.ini file and remove the items that you want to hide.
- Boot the system with this disk.
This method works well but requires two Boot.ini files. One on the system and one on a floppy disk.
]Note: Upgrading the operating system or adding service packs may remove the changes made to the Boot.ini file.