Is there such a thing as a Windows Boot Configuration Data (BCD) viewer for Linux?

I understand that BCD files are 'like registry hives' and tools exist to read registry hives for Linux.

Is there a way to see the contents, the list of partitions etc, that a BCD file contains? It used to be easy with boot.ini files but not anymore!

My use case is this: I have a hidden partition that is not accessible from Windows (it's a system partition) and I want to read the BCD file it has. On the same system, both that partition and the Windows boot partition have boot managers and BCD files and I'm trying to sort this out (and dual-boot Linux eventually).


Running apt-cache search windows registry on Debian to look for packages that may suit your purpose brings up five candidates. You can make a similar search on packages.debian.org, or search on the Debian packages site (use the “search package directories” form, and make sure to select “descriptions”).

Chntpw was developed to change a forgotten Windows administrator password, but it can view and edit any registry entry. There's a boot CD on the site.

Hivex is a library for accessing Windows registry hives. It's part of libguestfs, a suite of tools to work with virtual machine images from the host. It comes with command line tools to extract and edit registry entries. It supports BCD hives.

Parse::Win32Registry is a Perl module for reading Windows registry files.

RegLookup is a small utility to read Windows registry hives.

Samba comes with tools to access the Windows registry: editreg in Samba 3, and regshell and more in Samba 4. In Debian (only unstable right now), they're in the registry-tools package.

  • useless answer - BCD store is not related to registry in any way – Eugene Pankov Oct 28 '14 at 11:30
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    @Hardex Useless comment, the BCD store is a registry hive. (as the use any of the tools mentioned in the answer on a BCD file will confirm). The information contained in the hive is quite obscure though, and almost useless without the help of bcdedit.exe . – ack Mar 6 '15 at 4:00

I've started writing a Python library for manipulating the Windows BCD. The repository is available at Bitbucket.

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