Getting boot error: "PXE-E61: Media test failure, check cable"

Updated: 11/13/2018 by Computer Hope
PXE-E61: Media test failure error

If your desktop or laptop computer fails to boot and gives the error:

PXE-E61: Media test failure, check cable


PXE-M0F: Exiting PXE ROM

This indicates a problem with your computer's PXE (pre-boot execution environment). Most often, this error occurs when your boot sequence is misconfigured in your BIOS, or your boot device (usually your hard drive) cannot be read correctly.

If you are getting this error, we recommend the following troubleshooting steps:

  1. Boot your computer and enter your BIOS Setup. Check that the boot sequence is not configured for network boot. Make sure that your hard disk is listed in the boot sequence. Try making your hard disk the first device in your boot order using the keys shown at the bottom of your screen.
  2. If your hard disk is not listed as an option in your boot sequence, this may indicate that your hard drive has failed or the connection has come loose. If it is a desktop computer, you can power it down, open the case, and make sure that the connections to your hard drive are connected firmly and properly. In the image below, the power and data connections of a typical SATA hard drive are shown.

Checking the connections on a SATA hard drive

It is also possible the SATA cable is defective and the computer is not able to detect the hard drive due to a bad SATA cable. If the cables are firmly connected to the hard drive and to the motherboard, and the error still occurs, try replacing the SATA cable.

If your computer is a laptop, you may not be able to open it and check the connection. In this case, we recommend having a trained repair professional perform this task for you.

  1. You may also want to check the jumpers on your hard drive to make sure they are configured correctly. Again, this is only recommended if it is a desktop computer, not a laptop. Consult your hard disk manual for more information about correct jumper settings.
  2. In your BIOS setup, look for diagnostics options to self-test your primary hard disk drive. Consult your computer or motherboard manual for details.
  3. If all else fails, try resetting your BIOS to factory default settings.