Recovery from Windows 10 winload.efi expired error

If upon booting your Windows 10 PC you get a black or blue error screen with an error like

A component of your operating system has expired winload.efi

Prerequisite knowledge

  • The Windows 10 Creator’s Update can take 0.5 - 2 hours to install depending on your HDD/CPU speed.
  • The update will appear to forget your Wifi credentials upon first startup, but upon compleing first boot your Wifi credentials will be there
  • If you were on Insider Windows beta builds, Creator Update puts you on non-beta build and you need to check your configuration after install to see if you want beta/non-beta from now on.

First recover your files

Files not encrypted (no Bitlocker)

You can copy them off using an Ubuntu live USB stick and USB drive or by pulling the hard drive and copying your files.

Bitlocker encryption

try this procedure:

  1. upon power-on, go immediately into BIOS/UEFI and set the date to about the time your PC last worked. If you’re not sure, set the date roughly 6-12 months into the past.
  2. Reboot again and you should find Windows 10 will start, but will sold you about having an expired version of Windows. You will notice Windows sets the correct date automatically.
  3. Copy off all your data to an external drive.

Force Upgrade Windows 10 Creators

Download Windows 10 Creators Update Assistant and run on that PC.

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