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Windows 7: Boot Windows 7/8 from GPT on BIOS system : No hybrid MBRs or DUET!

28 Nov 2015   #41

Windows 7 x64

I took a 500GB GPT type Internal HDD and connected it to the Internal SATA and SATA Power connectors in my dads UEFI enabled computer, installed Windows 10 x64 and then disconnected the HDD after the first reboot (After it copied all the files, features etc.) as I don't want it installing and configuring for the wrong motherboard.

I plug it in to my computer via an external USB enclosure and follow the steps in the first post substituting the drive letter for the correct one.

bcdboot C:\Windows /l en-us /s K:
bootsect /nt60 K: /mbr /force
bcdedit /store K:\boot\bcd /set {bootmgr} device boot

I configure the BIOS to boot from the removable device, the BIOS fails to boot from the device. Is this because setup can't run on a GPT disk and a BIOS and thus can't finish the installation or what?

I'm meant to do all those 3 things to the drive that contains the Windows install right? Not any of those other partitions that Windows created during installing?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Nov 2015   #42

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

Why aren`t you installing with the drive on the correct motherboard ??????

Is your motherboard setup with UEFI enabled.

We`ve often said you can not install windows through a usb external enclosure.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Nov 2015   #43

Windows 7 x64

Actually, it worked pretty well.

1) Connect GPT type Internal HDD to internal SATA connectors on UEFI enabled Motherboard.
2) Install Windows 10 to the HDD and fully complete installation. You can switch to a USB external enclosure after the first reboot that occurs during installation if you strangely want to (Worked for me). You may suffer a installation failure during the installation if you are using USB and Setup decides it needs to install USB drivers for your motherboard... (for obvious reasons)
3) Attach HDD to USB external enclosure.
4) Connect External Enclosure to BIOS enabled Motherboard (In my situation, a different motherboard/computer to what Step 1 refers to).
5) Use Minitool Partition Wizard (Or whatever partitioning program you prefer) and copy the partition containing Windows off of the External Enclosure HDD to an Internal HDD. Don't use the Migrate O/S to SSD/HDD Wizard.
6) Perform the steps found here. Specifically, you should perform the following steps mentioned in the article:

bcdboot C:\Windows /l en-us /s D:
bootsect /nt60 D: /mbr /force
bcdedit /store D:\boot\bcd /set {bootmgr} device boot

7) Use EasyBCD to add a new Boot Entry for the new installation of Windows.
8) Configure the BIOS to boot off the new HDD if Windows is installed to a different HDD to what your previous copy of Windows is installed to (If you have multiple operating systems installed).
9) You're finished, enjoy.

Windows Update will want to install drivers for the first motherboard that the HDD was connected to during Windows Installation, I let it install everything and nothing bad happened (Other then wasting my time downloading irrelevant drivers).

This was all done with the Windows 10 Threshold 2 ISO.
I used my dads UEFI enabled computer to bypass this step in SevenForums guide (My computer has no UEFI support):

First install windows on a GPT disk. This can be done in several ways :

Install in BIOS mode on MBR and then convert using gptgen
Install in UEFI mode using DUET. (ONLY for 64-bit!)
Apply the windows install image (install.wim) using ImageX (Windows 7) or DISM (Windows 8+)on the GPT disk (best)
My System SpecsSystem Spec

28 Nov 2015   #44

Windows 7 x64

My bad, it works but there are various issues that don't resolve themselves after many hours of the computer being idle. Intermittent background activity consuming CPU resources as well as I/O resources are frequently occurring.

I might try a reinstall and migrate the HDD from my dads computer to my own after Setup finishes copying the Windows files but before it starts configuring any drivers/finishes setup. See if this fixes it.

Edit: It seems my BIOS is incapable of booting to a GPT type HDD, however the Windows Boot Loader has no issue booting an O/S installed on such a drive. I have to configure the bootloader so that the copy of Windows that is installed on the GPT Drive is the default O/S or enable the timer for selecting which O/S to boot in to so that I can select it during bootup.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Dec 2015   #45

Windows 7 Home Premium x64

Franpa, your method of getting Windows on a GPT drive using another UEFI system is pretty innovative, though somewhat more involved than directly imaging it onto the target GPT drive. I agree with your surmise that problems may have been caused by Windows having configured itself for the other system. I would still recommend the imaging method.

I am curious about what you mean in your last paragraph "It seems ... ". Your BIOS is obviously capable of booting a GPT disk because you have already done it. What is the current configuration of your *boot manager*? Does it not have your current installation of windows as an entry?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Dec 2015   #46

Windows 7 x64

I have 2 HDD's installed in my computer. One of them is a MBR type disk, the other is the GPT type disk. The Windows Bootloader is installed on the MBR disk, which the BIOS can load and than the Bootloader loads Windows on the GPT disk.

It was a smart idea, but every attempt I made to get Windows on the GPT disk only sort of worked. I could boot in to Windows but there would be GUID issues with the partition Windows was installed to or permissions issues for numerous files and folders causing weird issues like the inability to run DirectX Web Updater because it can't verify the version of existing files and "sfc.exe /scannow" reporting numerous issues for example.

The above problems were encountered when trying something simple like installing Windows to an MBR disk and copying the partition across to the GPT disk using partition management software.

I only tried installing Windows via my dads computer once and I'm unsure how well it actually worked, it was installing the wrong drivers and stuff and seemed a little confused but I'm not sure if it had any other issue other than being confused by the hardware changes. I could try it again and transfer the HDD back to my computer before Windows starts installing any drivers, but I've kinda just given up on the whole idea and am just gonna settle with having Windows on a separate MBR disk.

It's possible the problems were caused by my Windows 10 build 1511 media too, after a lot of mucking about I ended up doing a fresh install of Windows 10 RTM on my MBR disk and upgrading to build 1511 instead of doing a fresh install of 1511, "sfc.exe /scannow" reports no issues at all after doing this.

I spent like 3 or 4 days messing about trying various ways to get Windows 10 working correctly on the GPT disk and I'm over it. I can't be bothered messing with it anymore. I'm just gonna stick with what works and get back to gaming. It was an interesting diversion from normal daily activity though, a fun experiment.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Mar 2016   #47

windows 7
GPT on Thinkpad T410s

Dear gents

I have this non-UEFI laptop. I need more partitions (5 or more?) because of multi OS systems (Win 7, Linux, Openstack). As I know Lenovo T410s does not have UEFI BIOS. I was told it is not possible to install partitions with GPT if computer is not UEFI enabled. Can anybody confirm if it is not possible or it is?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Mar 2016   #48

Windows 7 x64

In my personal experience it is not possible to get a copy of Windows 10 on to a GPT partition without various file integrity errors (I tried installing Windows to MBR Disk and then used a Disk Management program to copy the disk image to the GPT disk drive, the Windows Installer will refuse to install to a GPT disk on BIOS enabled computers which is why I needed to do this). Also you will need a second HDD with a traditional Disk format (MBR, not GPT) in order to have a Boot Record that the BIOS can use to boot the copy of Windows installed to the GPT disk, if you have a MBR disk already than you're better off installing Windows to that disk than you are trying to install it to a GPT disk because it is straight up easier and less risky.

You could alternatively install Windows to your MBR disk and have Windows convert it to a Dynamic Disk in order to have more than 4 partitions but most disk management tools don't support a lot of features when dealing with Dynamic Disks.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 May 2016   #49

Windows 7, 8.1, 10

I just upgraded from a 2TB to a 3TB HD. I have both Win7 & 8.1 on the old HD. I've cloned the drive to the new drive, keeping it as MBR (no UEFI BIOS on my older MB). Althought I normally boot from an SSD, I'd like to keep the option of booting from the HD available, just in case something would go wrong with the SSD. I know how to convert the new HD from MBR to GPT without losing the data. What I'm a little unclear on is exactly how to go about building the bootable USB drive. Does anyone have a step-by-step description of what to do to build the bootable USB drive?

On a related note, once I have a bootable USB drive, I'm wondering if I can test before converting the new HD to GPT. What I'm thinking is booting from the USB drive with it setup to point to the new HD (still setup as MBR). This would give me confidence that everything will work when I switch the new HD to GPT. Do you think this would work (as a test of the new configuration)?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Boot Windows 7/8 from GPT on BIOS system : No hybrid MBRs or DUET!

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