HomeWinBuzzer NewsWindows 11 OOBE Secrets Revealed by Security Expert

Windows 11 OOBE Secrets Revealed by Security Expert

Security researcher finds hidden shortcuts in Windows 11 OOBE, offering access to advanced features like Audit Mode, diagnostics, and even a developer console.


Security researcher Enderman has found previously undisclosed shortcuts within the Windows 11 Out of Box Experience (OOBE), particularly in its first 24H2 build, numbered 26052. These discoveries could leverage Windows users’ ability to interact with the operating system’s setup process, revealing functionalities that extend beyond those officially documented by Microsoft.

Exclusive Shortcuts and Diagnostic Tools

The investigation highlights several shortcuts within the OOBE process that might not be common knowledge among the general user base. Among these is the well-known Shift + F10 trick, but Enderman has also brought to light additional hotkeys. For instance, the combination of Ctrl + Shift + F3 enables access to the Audit Mode within the System Preparation Tool (Sysprep). This special mode aids administrators and users in applying further customizations to the Windows image before finalizing the installation. Another key combination, Ctrl + Shift + D, provides entry to the Windows Autopilot Diagnostics Page. This feature offers valuable insights regarding the Autopilot provisioning process, beneficial for troubleshooting and ensuring a smooth setup experience.

Revealing the Developer Console Shortcut

Perhaps the most intriguing finding is the identification of a previously undocumented developer console within the OOBE, accessible through the Ctrl + Shift + J shortcut. Although Microsoft explicates some shortcuts, this particular one seems to have remained unacknowledged until Enderman’s disclosure. Utilizing a Global Event Listener within the code, this discovery unearths a secret pathway for developers and curious users to delve deeper into the inner workings of the OOBE. The researcher showcases this functionality by adapting the OOBE end-user license agreement in a demonstration video, signaling the potential for extensive customization and exploration.

Enderman’s revelations provide a new window into the flexibility and depth of Windows 11’s setup process, emphasizing the operating system’s capacity for customization and diagnostic access. As enthusiasts and professionals alike explore these newly exposed options, the broader implications for system setup, troubleshooting, and personalization become clear, marking another milestone in the continuous exploration of Windows’ extensive featureset.

Luke Jones
Luke Jones
Luke has been writing about all things tech for more than five years. He is following Microsoft closely to bring you the latest news about Windows, Office, Azure, Skype, HoloLens and all the rest of their products.