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Windows 7: System migration from MBR to UEFI

3 Weeks Ago   #11
goopy

Windows 7 Ultimate x86
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Megahertz07 View Post
I have never used mbr2gpt so I can't say how to use.
Make a disk image and save to an external disk before you try anything.
Download and make a WinPE rescue USB disk. Run the mbr2gpt from it.
Windows 10 Recovery Tools - Bootable Rescue Disk Solved - Windows 10 Forums
Detach (power or SATA cable) of all other disks
Make sure you select the proper disk:
Diskpart
list disk (take note of your win 7 disk)
exit
Thanks for the link to Kyhi's Win10PESE.
Will give it a go and revert.
Many thanks and best regards,


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
3 Weeks Ago   #12
goopy

Windows 7 Ultimate x86
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by samuria View Post
You say it's not detected is that BIOS or windows? Have you tried another port and cable and run check disk? We need to know the state of the disk if it's got lots of bad blocks then a new disk and a clean install is the only sensible option
Thanks for the kind reply, samuria.
It's a motherboard issue. Disks are good.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
3 Weeks Ago   #13
Vineet Garg

Windows 7 Ultimate x32 With Sp1 + Vista Ultimate x32 with Sp1 & Sp2 !!
 
 

Hi All,
Greets,

Congrats Sir @samuria .

@goopy : Thanks for all the feedback & Information. I think its all well now.

(a) In first place : As said by Sir Megahertz07, even if you do it all well with the procedure, UEFI Bios support is essential to boot into UEFI (GPT).
( The systems which came/work originally with Legacy Bios, mostly prior to 2012 or refurbished, normally don't support UEFI. Though systems with UEFI, normally have options in Bios to switch to pure Legacy BIOS and/or using Legacy Bios along side UEFI. But UEFI ( GPT ) is very advanced & has many positives over MBR. )

(b)
Quote:
1. Can't find on the linked page how to create the FAT32 EFI partition on the target disc. Does AOMEI/Macrium provide such functionality?
(i) You need not create FAT32 EFI Partition on the target disk if you follow the link properly. AOMEI Backupper free should take care of it automatically.

(ii) Right now we are talking about the two : Macrium Reflect Free & AOMEI Backupper Standard/Free. Basically both are imaging programs & are not partitioning management programs in the first place. They offer ways to write/create already cloned/Imaged partitions on the disk(s) but don't offer to create the partitions in first place. We don't have the required EFI Partition already cloned because it's not there on the MBR disk.
BUT...
Yes it seems AOMEI Backupper Free should create an EFI Partition there. I think it will create a FAT32 partition & write boot requirement files from MBR's Active partition,etc. to that FAT32 partition & make it finally bootable in UEFI (GPT) But its an advanced automated/ background functioning provided only by the AOMEI Backupper Free & not by Macrium Reflect Free A straight away option is not offered by any of them.
For better understanding about creating an EFI Partition manually, have a look little ahead!

(c)
Quote:
2. Any tools/commands to generate the EFI partition?
(i) In first place as said above : with AOMEI as in that Link, you should need not think about EFI Partition things.

(ii) I am not well versed with commands to do so and I have suggested workarounds a little ahead but there are better ways to do so such as : UEFI/GPT-based hard drive partitions
( Please Explore! )

(d)
Quote:
3. Or is it possible to clone an existing EFI partition and use it together with MBR system partition?
Very Good Understanding! I appreciate & thank for it.

(e) If you plan to migrate from MBR to GPT manually without AOMEI Backupper Free's System Image option & without any Trial/Paid software, the main system partition ( c: ) in MBR is the crucial thing for running the system in GPT as well.
But... EFI partition is also very crucial!
What an Active partition do it in MBR, more or less the same thing is done by EFI partition in the GPT.

TO ADD : EFI Partition is not anywhere mentioned as 'Active' partition in the Windows In-built Disk Management though ''MiniTool Partition Wizard'' mentions that its an Active partition! Still the term ''Active Partition' or try to mark or make a partition as 'Active' or 'Inactive', doesn't apply to GPT partition scheme.

But where you will call/clone it from ? EFI partition is not there on the MBR disk. MBR has an NTFS partition marked as active for that but It can't work directly for UEFI (GPT).
But EFI partition is just a FAT32 formatted, Primary partition, without a drive letter assigned with boot material, etc.
So, should we try making a FAT32 partition manually & leave the task to write the required boot files to it by Macrium Reflect Free's Rescue Environment ?

NOTES :
1. It would be easier to accomplish the task by booting into the Kyhi Sir's Win 10 Recovery Media
2. We will need a good 3rd party partitioning program & Macrium Reflect Free rescue media for the task & both are available in that Recovery Media.
3. I assume that the Main System Partition c: from the MBR, is already imaged & is available to apply from an external/internal disk.
4. I assume that the applied disk is already converted to GPT.
5. I assume that a Pen drive or disk is ready with the Rescue Media & can boot in UEFI ( GPT ) mode.

So as per theory :

*Keep all the other external/internal disks/drives ejected or powered off. Keep only the GPT drive & the external/internal disk And boot into the rescue media.
[ There by only three Disks are in use : The GPT drive, The external/internal disk & rescue media ( pen drive or DVD ) ]

**Launch a good 3rd party partitioning program.

* Make sure that the GPT drive ( or the disk which was converted to GPT) only have a single partition existing i.e. MSR (128MB). ( That is automatically created by GPT.)
Delete all the other partitions on the disk to unallocated space.

** Then make a FAT32, Primary partition, 260 MB, without assigning a drive letter to it. It should be created there to the extreme left of the disk to take the first place on the disk & MSR (128mb) should exactly follow it.
( You may need to move the MSR (128mb) partition to the right to make space 260 mb for the FAT32 partition to take the first place on the disk & MSR as the 2nd )
Don't try to delete or recreate the MSR (128) partition ever!

* Then copy/apply clone of the C: ( The NTFS, Primary,Main System Partition from MBR) exactly next to the MSR (128MB) to take space to its right on the unallocated space thereby 3rd place on the Disk.

** After doing this all come out of the rescue media / Shut down the pc.

* Disconnect the external/internal disk & boot into the rescue media.
[Two disks are there : The GPT drive & The recovery media ( Pen drive or DVD ) ]

** Launch Macrium Reflect from there & choose to fix boot errors.

*Once successfully completed, shut down the PC & try to boot from the GPT disk.

( Its done!)

Just To mention :

There are good M$ articles to understand the proper GPT Partition Structure such as Recommended UEFI-Based Disk-Partition Configurations

There are some understandings that I have developed over the time.

For eg.

TO EDIT : The very important partition for disk operations, MSR ( 128 MB ) partition is not visible in the default Disk Management window. Its only shown by good 3rd party Imaging & Partitioning programs. Its also shown by Diskpart tool's ( Windows) : List Partition command.

The MSR partition should be created by the GPT Partitioning itself but the EFI Partition is created by OS Installation.

So, A GPT disk with data will not have EFI Partition. If its there it is serving an OS or was serving an OS previously.

( I understand the things but can't proceed as I am not having any spare GPT disk/system right now )

Thanks & Regards. ...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

3 Weeks Ago   #14
goopy

Windows 7 Ultimate x86
 
 

Greetings All,

1. First attempt at running mbr2gpt went smoothly. The MBR drive was converted in an instance and booted successfully subsequently. 200MB of space was unallocated, out of which 100 was used to create the new EFI partition, leaving the remaining 100 unused. However the usual 128Mb system reserve was not created. What is that used for? Any problem down the road?

2. Would anyone know what tool was used to perform the MBR/GPT conversion without destroying the data? Can diskpart convert gpt do the job?

3. Came across this old post by Kyhi "Moving/recreating EFI partition" on migrating to a new drive and was wondering if the tools used can do so similarly in W7. The idea seems to be

(a) Use diskpart to create a 100MB EFI partition on a new GPT drive,
(b) Make an image of the windows partition to be migrated and restore on to the unallocated portion of the new GPT drive,
(c) Run BCDboot to write the boot data to the new EFI partition.

So does W7 have all the tools required to do this?

Moving / recreating EFI partition - Windows 10 Forums

Many thanks and best regards,
My System SpecsSystem Spec
3 Weeks Ago   #15
Vineet Garg

Windows 7 Ultimate x32 With Sp1 + Vista Ultimate x32 with Sp1 & Sp2 !!
 
 

Hi All,
Greets,
@goopy : Thanks for the feedback & Information.

1) The MSR (128 mb) will not be listed in Window's in-built Disk Management. Make sure whether it's there or not ? whether its size is decreased ? You may use : MiniTool Partition Wizard Portable

2)
Quote:
However the usual 128Mb system reserve was not created. What is that used for? Any problem down the road?
Add an MSR to each GPT drive to help with partition management. The MSR is a reserved partition that does not receive a partition ID. It cannot store user data.
It may be problematic if you try to make new partition(s), change size,etc.

3) Get us the disk(s) snapshot from within Partition Wizard.
Screenshots and Files - Upload and Post in Seven Forums

4) Update the latest status & requirements.

Thanks & Regards. ...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
3 Weeks Ago   #16
Megahertz07

Windows 7 HP 64
 
 

Thank you for the feed back that Win 10 tool with mbr2gpt successfully converted your Legacy-MBR disk to UEFI-GPT.

On a Legacy-MBR you select a disk to boot from. BIOS points to a disk MBR that takes the boot sequence to a Master boot loader on a partition (Active partition). This Master boot loader can have a option to take the boot sequence to another boot loader (dual boot). It's a chain sequence.

On a UEFI-GPT you select a Boot loader to boot from. BIOS points to a Boot loader on the Fat32 EFI partition. This boot loader takes the boot sequence to the OS on a partition. On the Fat32 EFI partition you can have many boot loaders that can take the boot sequence to different partitions on same disk or on different disk. The boot loaders are independent, not chained.

There are two small partitions on a OEM Legacy-MBR installation:
- System Reserved that has the OEM tools. It is the active partition, that is, has a Master boot loader. This master boot loader can run OEM tools (maintenance, recovery etc) or redirect the boot sequence to the Windows partition that has the windows boot loader (C:\Boot)
- MSR is a RAW partition, and for what I know, is used to store the decryption key to open a Bitlocker drive. It is created during installation when you create a partition on an unallocated space to install Windows. It is only used with Bitlocker on the Ultimate Win 7 version.
My laptop (Legacy-MBR) doesn't have both. It doesn't have System reserved as my installation was done with a Retail M$ Win 7 (not OEM). Also it doesn't have the MSR partition as the main disk had a formatted partition when I installed win 7.

When you converted from Legacy-MBR to UEFI-GPT it created a EFI Fat32 partition with the Windows boot loader but also deleted the System reserved partition that had the Legacy Master boot loader.
You probably still have the 128M RAW MSR partition (not shown on Disk manager).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
3 Weeks Ago   #17
Vineet Garg

Windows 7 Ultimate x32 With Sp1 + Vista Ultimate x32 with Sp1 & Sp2 !!
 
 

5)
Quote:
Would anyone know what tool was used to perform the MBR/GPT conversion without destroying the data? Can diskpart convert gpt do the job?
You are talking about Megahertz07 sir's suggestion ? It is the Win 10 tool/feature which we don't have in Win 7, 8, 8.1 & in the earlier versions of Win 10.
No, diskpart can't convert to GPT without data loss but some 3rd party programs pro editions offer that.

@goopy :

It seems the problem status is maintained & you are still looking for a genuine suggestion to change Win 7 MBR to Win 7 GPT. I think I will be able to help with that in the evening.

Migrating from MBR to GPT would be great but are you really interested in that ? Does your disk & BIOS allow that ? You are able to boot into both UEFI & Legacy BIOS on the same PC / System / BIOS. So, BIOS should not be a problem.

You are wanting to have a nice boot menu with both OS rather than launching One Time Boot Menu at every boot to boot in a particular disk.No matter whether you migrate or not, you would probably need to add boot menu entry in one of the disk's boot menu, depending on your system!

Please don't keep mum. Update the current status, requirement(s) / wish & required Disks Snapshots.

Let us know.

Thanks & Regards. ...

EDIT :

@goopy :

You said :

Quote:
First attempt at running mbr2gpt went smoothly. The MBR drive was converted in an instance and booted successfully subsequently. 200MB of space was unallocated, out of which 100 was used to create the new EFI partition, leaving the remaining 100 unused. However the usual 128Mb system reserve was not created.
Has the suggested link ( Megahertz07 Sir ) migrated you successfully from MBR to GPT ? Are you able to boot into Win 7 & work well with that after migration ? Then what is bad in that ?

My friend, I am confused & unable to help you without the required information & snaps!

Thanks & Regards. ...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
2 Weeks Ago   #18
goopy

Windows 7 Ultimate x86
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Megahertz07 View Post
Thank you for the feed back that Win 10 tool with mbr2gpt successfully converted your Legacy-MBR disk to UEFI-GPT.

On a Legacy-MBR you select a disk to boot from. BIOS points to a disk MBR that takes the boot sequence to a Master boot loader on a partition (Active partition). This Master boot loader can have a option to take the boot sequence to another boot loader (dual boot). It's a chain sequence.

On a UEFI-GPT you select a Boot loader to boot from. BIOS points to a Boot loader on the Fat32 EFI partition. This boot loader takes the boot sequence to the OS on a partition. On the Fat32 EFI partition you can have many boot loaders that can take the boot sequence to different partitions on same disk or on different disk. The boot loaders are independent, not chained.

There are two small partitions on a OEM Legacy-MBR installation:
- System Reserved that has the OEM tools. It is the active partition, that is, has a Master boot loader. This master boot loader can run OEM tools (maintenance, recovery etc) or redirect the boot sequence to the Windows partition that has the windows boot loader (C:\Boot)
- MSR is a RAW partition, and for what I know, is used to store the decryption key to open a Bitlocker drive. It is created during installation when you create a partition on an unallocated space to install Windows. It is only used with Bitlocker on the Ultimate Win 7 version.
My laptop (Legacy-MBR) doesn't have both. It doesn't have System reserved as my installation was done with a Retail M$ Win 7 (not OEM). Also it doesn't have the MSR partition as the main disk had a formatted partition when I installed win 7.

When you converted from Legacy-MBR to UEFI-GPT it created a EFI Fat32 partition with the Windows boot loader but also deleted the System reserved partition that had the Legacy Master boot loader.
You probably still have the 128M RAW MSR partition (not shown on Disk manager).

Thanks for the great tutorial, Megahertz07.

1. The missing partition is the system reserve typically created by diskpart convert gpt command. It has an id {e3c9e316-0b5c-4db8-817d-f92df00215ae}, is 128MB under W7, but 16MB under W10. What the purpose of this partition?
This partition is not created by mbrtogpt tool. The old 100GB MBR system partition is preserved, but with the boot folder removed. Any reason for doing so?

2. MBR to GPT layout conversion without data loss is apparently fairly straight forward, but it appears the mbrtogpt tool would not perform the conversion when there's no system partition. Does MS provide other tools for such a purpose?

3. I tried to follow Kyhi's guide to create an EFI partition using a W7 system. The process failed at bcdboot with this error message:
Code:
C:\Windows\system32>bcdboot E:\Windows /s S:
 BFSVC: Failed to create a new system store. Status = [c000003a]
Anyone with experience running bcdboot under W7? What's the proper way to copy EFI boot data?

Many thanks and best regards,
My System SpecsSystem Spec
2 Weeks Ago   #19
goopy

Windows 7 Ultimate x86
 
 

Greetings Vineet Grag,

1. As you can read from my post, mbr2gpt tool was able to convert a W7 mbr disk to gpt, and it booted successfully. However, the system reserve partition was not created. Is this going to cause problem down the road? You know, it's always prudent to look a few steps ahead.
2. The mbr2gpt tool is finicky, and not officially sanctioned to work on W7. If there's a ms tool that can do the mbr to gpt layout conversion without destroying the data, then that would be the preferred option for in-place conversion.
3. Kyhi has posted an excellent guide on OS migration to new gpt disk. It works on a W10 setup, but the crucial step of bcdboot ran into a bit of problem on a W7 setup. If this can be resolved, then one doesn't have to go around begging for a W10 machine to do the job.
4. So be a bit more patient and let the genius on this forums figure out something.
Many thanks and best regards,
My System SpecsSystem Spec
2 Weeks Ago   #20
Vineet Garg

Windows 7 Ultimate x32 With Sp1 + Vista Ultimate x32 with Sp1 & Sp2 !!
 
 

@goopy :

Greets,

1.
Quote:
As you can read from my post, mbr2gpt tool was able to convert a W7 mbr disk to gpt, and it booted successfully. However, the system reserve partition was not created. Is this going to cause problem down the road?
(i) It's actually a great find if MSR ( 128 MB) is created. To again repeat : it will not be shown in the In-built Disk Management. You can see it by commands or a good 3rd party Partition or Image management programs such as
MiniTool Partition Wizard Portable

(ii) Actually, the software components that used hidden sectors in the Legacy BIOS ( MBR ) use MSR (128MB) in UEFI ( GPT ). For eg. If any sector is partially damaged on the disk, you will not be able to remap and/or get your data back & use the disk thereafter.
I did some google but its not provided information extensively. The above one is just a single example!

2.
Quote:
If there's a ms tool that can do the mbr to gpt layout conversion without destroying the data, then that would be the preferred option for in-place conversion.
You may try this : Converting Windows BIOS installation to UEFI

3.
Quote:
Kyhi has posted an excellent guide on OS migration to new gpt disk. It works on a W10 setup, but the crucial step of bcdboot ran into a bit of problem on a W7 setup. If this can be resolved, then one doesn't have to go around begging for a W10 machine to do the job.
You are talking about this one : Moving / recreating EFI partition

(i) That's really great but it is to move/recreate EFI System Partition & not applied to you directly!
When you did it with Win 10 MBR2GPT ( Megahertz07 Sir ), it was all well with the EFI Partition. I was suspecting that you did not have MSR ( 128MB ) but you did not look for it & never confirmed! If it's there no problem with the migration!

(ii) That's applicable to Win 7/8/8.1/10.

5.
Quote:
The missing partition is the system reserve typically created by diskpart convert gpt command. This partition is not created by mbrtogpt tool.
(i) It seems what I suspected. Did you confirm in Diskpart's List Partition command or a good 3rd party Partitioning or Imaging program ?

6.
Quote:
is 128MB under W7, but 16MB under W10
Its all well. Its MSR . Its 128MB in W7 & W8 but 16MB in W10. It also depends on the size of the disk!

7.
Quote:
The old 100GB MBR system partition is preserved, but with the boot folder removed. Any reason for doing so?
You are talking about MBR's 100MB Active Partition ? That's used to write boot files in MBR, the GPT uses EFI partition for that.

TO ADD : If You want to do it Manually :
(i) Better image your main System Partition C: ( & other important NTFS Partition(s) if any! ) with Macrium.
(ii) Use Diskpart to partition the GPT disk afresh, making all the required partitions.
( Recreating Microsoft Reserved (system reserved) partition | Windows 8 Help Forums )
(iii) Apply the Imaged partitions to proper partitions.
(iv) Write Boot Files to the already created EFI System partition using bcdboot command as in : Moving / recreating EFI partition

Once all is well, Then only try to prepare a nice looking boot menu, adding boot menu entry to one of the disk's boot menu, depending on the system.

Warning : The instructions may change a little, depending on the disk structure!

Thanks & Regards. ...

Just To Mention :

(a) MSR

(b) To use Win 10 MBR2GPT, you need not borrow Win 10 machine or install Win 10 OS on machine. You can directly do that with Win 10 Installation Media : Version 1703 or later

MBR2GPT.EXE converts a disk from the Master Boot Record (MBR) to the GUID Partition Table (GPT) partition style without modifying or deleting data on the disk. The tool is designed to be run from a Windows Preinstallation Environment (Windows PE) command prompt.

(c) Kyhi Sir's latest Win 10 Recovery Media is based on Win 10 : Version 1607 , The Version 1607 or earlier don't support MBR2GPT.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 System migration from MBR to UEFI




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