The requested system device cannot be found issue often happens when Windows cannot boot successfully and user try to rebuild MBR in Command Prompt with a Windows installation media bootable USB drive. This article analyzes the possible reasons for the error "rebuildbcd the requested system device cannot be found" and illustrates 3 solutions to resolve this issue.

When your windows system cannot boot successfully, it is likely due to the damage or corruption of the BCD file on your Windows system. For example, when you boot your computer, but the computer screen might show “Recovery your PC needs to be repaired“. This means Windows can not be able to boot the system due to the missing or corruption of system files used for booting.

At this time, you would turn to Windows Recovery Media, Windows Repair Disc or other types of USB installation media to fix it when Windows is unbootable. To fix the BCD file, most people will choose to fix the MBR by using the following commands in Command Prompt:

bootrec /Rebuildbcd

bootrec /Fixmbr

bootrec /Fixboot

However, when people try to use the above command to fix MBR, it may result in “rebuildbcd the requested system device cannot be found” error.

Successfully scanned Windows installations: 1
[1] C:Windows
Add installation to boot list? Yes(Y)/No(N)/All(A):Y
The requested system device cannot be found.

Some users also come across the “bcdedit import the requested system device cannot be found” issue. When they perform bcdedit /enum, they receive the following message:

The boot configuration data store cannot be opened.
The requested system device cannot be found.

Why would “the requested system device cannot be found” occur? What should we do when this issue occurs? Don’t be panic. In the following contents, I will show you 4 solutions to help you get out of the trouble.

Why Would “the requested system device cannot be found” Error Occur?

1. You plug the USB into a wrong USB slot, which is not support for WinRE environment.

If you are booting from a USB drive, and your BIOS supports a given USB slot, but the Windows Repair Environment does not, the requested system device cannot be found Windows 10 issue would occur.

For example, some users boot with the advanced USB 3.0 interface. However, the USB 3.0 interface cannot be detected by Windows Repair Environment. In this case, you may try a different USB slot and check if this issue still exists.

2. The requested system device cannot be found issue occurred after converting system disk to GPT.

When you convert MBR disk to GPT but your boot option is BIOS/MBR not UEFI, the requested system device cannot be found Windows 10 issue could occur, and Windows also reported the installed version was not a compatible windows version. After converting the system disk to GPT, you need to select UEFI boot instead of BIOS and start PC again.

3. Windows didn’t find the correct partition.

If you boot from a UEFI Windows 10 recovery disk (CD/DVD/USB), the automated recovery process may not find the correct system partition. If you use a Window 10 installation media USB drive to boot, it may not find the correct system partition on the hard drive, leading to the bootrec /rebuildbcd device cannot be found Windows 10 issue.

4. EFI partition is missing or corrupted.

On GPT disk, system is looking for the EFI partition. If the partition is missing or corrupted, you’ll encounter the requested system device cannot be found Windows 10 error as well. If you are using an MBR system disk, you need to make sure the partition that stored BCD registry file is set active.

5. Windows installation and USB drive boot mode do not match.

For example, if your Windows was installed by using legacy BIOS, you should create a proper legacy BIOS bootable USB drive. If not, the bootrec /rebuildbcd device cannot be found Windows 10 issue could occur.

Note: If you have important files and data stored on the unbootable computer, you may recover important files from the computer by using a professional data recovery software.

Solution 1. Repair Windows 10 with Windows Repair DVD/CD

If Windows PE cannot recognize USB drive or USB 3.0 cannot be detected by Windows, you can try to create a Windows installation media by using a DVD/CD.

Step 1. Create a Windows 10 installation media DVD/CD disc by using Microsoft’s Media Creation tool.

Step 2. Boot from the Windows DVD/CD disc, and in Advanced options page, choose Command Prompt.

choose Command Prompt

Step 3. Type these commands and press Enter after each command.

bootrec /fixmbr

bootrec /fixboot

bootrec /rebuildbcd

Step 4. Restart your PC to see if that works.

Solution 2. Set the Correct Partition in Command Prompt

If the error “the requested system device cannot be found” occurs when you try to perform Bootrec operations using a USB installation media, it may not find the correct system partition, which causes bootrec /rebuildbcd device cannot be found Windows 10 issue. You may try this method to set the correct partition.

Step 1. Boot from a UEFI Windows 10 installation (CD/DVD/USB) disk, and in Advanced optionspage, choose Command Prompt.

Step 2. Input diskpart and press Enter to list all partitions and for you to identify EFI partition. Please note that EFI partition is formatted as FAT32 type (if the EFI partition is missing, click here to follow the instruction to create one).

Step 3. Input select volume 3 and press Enter (here volume 3 is the volume number of the EFI partition).

Step 4. Input assign letter=m to assign a letter to the EFI partition and press Enter. You may replace m with a letter of your choice.

Step 5. Input exit and press Enter to exit diskpart

Step 6. Then type the following commands in Command Prompt and press Enter after every command.

cd /d m:EFIMicrosoftBoot

bootrec /fixboot

Step 7. Input ren BCD BCD.bak and press Enter to change the name of BDC file from BCD to BCD.bak file.

Step 8. Input bcdboot c:Windows /l en-us /s m: /f ALL and press Enter to recreate BCD. If the letter you’ve assigned for the EFI partition earlier is not m, then change it in this command accordingly.

Step 9. Input exit to close Command Prompt and restart your computer.

This solution has helped many people resolve the error the requested system device cannot be found Windows 10 and rebuild BCD, especially for people who use a USB installation media to rebuild MBR.

Solution 3: Reinstall system

If all of the above methods do not work for your computer, then you have no choice but to reinstall Windows 10 as the last resolution. Although reinstalling Windows can be troublesome, it does help.

However, if you reinstall your operating system, the files on your system drive can be deleted and all your applications need to be reinstalled. So we recommend backing up your files before you reinstall your system.

MiniTool Partition Wizard is professional partition magic that helps manage partition and disk issues in just a few clicks. If you want to save all files and data on the disk, you may choose its Copy Disk feature in MiniTool Partition Wizard Bootable Edition.

Note: If you just want to copy specific partitions on your disks, you might as well choose the Copy Partition feature. The steps are the same as Copy Disk.

Step 1. Prepare a USB flash drive (or CD/DVD disc) and connect it to a normal computer.

Step 2. Get MiniTool Partition Wizard Pro Edition by clicking the following button and launch Bootable Media Builder (you may see this feature by clicking the More Tools icon) from MiniTool software to the main interface.

Bootable Media Builder in Partition Wizard

Step 3. Select WinPE-based media with MiniTool plug-in to continue.

select a media type in the Partition Wizard

Step 4. Select USB Flash Drive option and choose the correct USB flash drive. Then click Yes to confirm that you want to burn the boot flash drive.

choose a media destination in the Partition Wizard

Step 5. When you select the USB Flash Disk, please make sure the USB does not contain any important files and data as MiniTool Partition Wizard will format the drive firstly. Then click Yes to go on.

click Yes

Step 6. Click Finish after successful burning.

click Finish

Step 7. Connect the MiniTool bootable media on the problematic computer. Then enter the BIOS to change the boot order, giving the USB device boot sequence priority over the hard drive. If you are using a DVD/CD disc, change the boot sequence priority accordingly.

Step 8. When you boot from the USB drive, you will get the interface of MiniTool PE loader, then click MiniTool Partition Wizard to get the main interface of MiniTool Partition Wizard Bootable Edition.

MiniTool PE Loader

Step 9. When you get the main interface of Partition Wizard, select the disk that you want to copy and click on Copy Disk.

copy disk in partition wizard

Step 10. Follow the instructions of Partition Wizard and at last, don’t forget to click Apply on the upper left corner.

After you successful backup necessary partitions or disks, now follow the steps on how to install Windows 10. You may refer to this post if you don’t know how to install Windows 10: How to Install Windows 10 on a New Hard Drive (with Pictures)

Step 1. Insert the Windows10 installation media USB drive or DVD/CD disc to your computer and boot from it.

Step 2. Select your language preferences, and click on Next button to continue.

Step 3. Click on Install now.

Step 4. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the setup configurations and the reinstallation of your system.

Mostly, the installation is automatic, but keep an eye on it and answer any questions you’re asked. Once the installation is done, Windows 10 will boot successfully, and you just need to sign in with your Microsoft account, and get everything ready.

“By following the methods in this post, I successfully fixed ‘the requested system device cannot be found’ issue and now my Windows 10 can boot normally. Hope this post helps more friends who are suffering from the same issue.”Click to Tweet

Bottom Line

In this post, I have introduced you 3 ways to resolve “the requested system device cannot be found” issue. Now, you may try the above 3 methods to fix it and reboot your computer. If you choose to reinstall Windows 10, remember to backup important files and data on your computer by using MiniTool Partition Wizard Bootable Edition. Hope this post can help you.

If you have any other good solutions about “the requested system device cannot be found” issue or if you’ve come across other hard drive issues, you can leave a message on the following comment zone and we will response as soon as possible. If you need any help when using MiniTool software, you can contact us via [email protected].

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