Experiencing a Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) on your Windows 11 PC can be daunting, especially when faced with the cryptic 'INACCESSIBLE_BOOT_DEVICE' error. Fear not! Let's walk through some user-friendly steps to get your PC running smoothly again.

What causes ‘INACCESSIBLE_BOOT_DEVICE’ error? It can be hard to pinpoint what is the definitive cause behind this issue, but some common factors that are known to trigger this particular BSOD error are as follows:

  • Damaged or disconnected HDD or SSD.
  • Corrupted or broken system file.
  • The conflict between drivers.
  • Outdated graphics/SATA drivers.

Step-by-step guide to resolve the error

  1. Enter Safe Mode via System Configuration:
  • Press Windows + R to open the Run dialog.
  • Type msconfig and press Enter to open the System Configuration utility.
  • Navigate to the 'Boot' tab.
  • Check the 'Safe boot' option and select 'Minimal'.
  • Click 'Apply', then 'OK', and restart your PC.
  • This will start Windows 11 in Safe Mode, a diagnostic mode with limited functionality that is helpful for troubleshooting.
  1. Run System File Checker (SFC) Scan:
  • Right-click on the Start button and select 'Terminal (Admin)'.
  • In the terminal window, type sfc /scannow and press Enter.
  • The System File Checker will begin scanning and repairing corrupted system files. This might take some time, so patience is key.
  1. Perform a DISM Scan:
  • Right-click on the Start button and select 'Terminal (Admin)'.
  • In the terminal window, type DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth and hit Enter.
  • The Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool will start. It can download and replace corrupted files from Windows Update.
  1. Reinstall the Graphics Driver:
  • Open 'Device Manager' by right-clicking the Start button and selecting it.
  • Expand the 'Display adapters' section.
  • Right-click on your graphics card and choose 'Uninstall device'.
  • After uninstalling, restart your PC. Windows will attempt to reinstall the driver.
  1. Run Check Disk on System Drive:
  • Open Windows Terminal (admin) and type chkdsk /r C: then press Enter.
  • This command schedules a disk check on the C: drive (your system drive) on the next restart. It checks for and fixes disk errors.
  1. Reset Windows 11:
  • Go to Settings > System > Recovery.
  • Click on 'Reset this PC'.
  • Choose 'Keep my files' to reinstall Windows without losing personal data.
  • Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the reset.
  1. Disconnect External Drives:
  • Physically unplug any connected external hard drives, USBs, or other storage devices.
  • This is to ensure they are not interfering with the boot process.
  1. Check Your Boot Drive Connection:
  • If comfortable, open your PC’s case and check the SATA cable connections to your primary storage drive.
  • Ensure the cable is securely connected to both the drive and the motherboard.
  1. Update SATA Adapter Drivers:
  • Open 'Device Manager' by right-clicking the Start button and selecting it.
  • In Device Manager, find and expand 'IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers'.
  • Right-click on 'Standard SATA AHCI Controller' and select 'Update driver'.
  • Choose 'Search automatically for drivers' and follow the prompts.
  1. Set Proper Boot Device in BIOS:
  • Restart your PC and repeatedly press DEL or the key indicated on the screen during boot to enter BIOS setup.
  • Navigate to the Boot section and check the boot order.
  • Ensure your primary Windows 11 drive is set as the first boot option.
  • Save changes and exit BIOS.

By following these steps, your 'INACCESSIBLE_BOOT_DEVICE' error should be a thing of the past. Remember, regular maintenance and updates can prevent a lot of these issues. Keep your system clean, your drivers updated, and your files backed up. Happy computing!