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10 UEFI bootable without GPT, very easy

win10 uefi mbr

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#1 alacran

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Posted 04 February 2016 - 04:28 AM

I found this and I wanted to let you know:

 

 

10 UEFI bootable without GPT, very easy

 so, from all my reading i was under the impression that it was impossible to boot uefi without having your hdd partitioned using gpt instead of mbr.

well, one can't believe everything they read.

also, i was under the impression that one had to have the msr partition or the system would not boot.

again, one can't believe everything they read.


my bios is native uefi--secure boot is unsupported however in it (turning it off would do the same thing). my hdd drive is mbr partitioned. there is no msr partition. i am booting my uefi windows 10 enterprise x64 this way.

all you need is one regular fat32 partition with the EFI folder from the windows 10 install media copied to it, the bcd edited to point to the windows partition, and viola, uefi windows on mbr.

i did this because i didn't want to wipe and convert my hdd to gpt and my laptop requires uefi to use the dvdrw properly for some reason. and i wanted to see if it could be done, which it can, regardless what everyone else says. this a good workaround for others with hardware not being recognized properly in the newer versions of windows when not running the oem windows configuration.

two shots attached, one is showing the mbr disk booting windows uefi, the second is showing there is no legacy boot\bcd either on the fat32 partition with the efi files or the windows partition

 

Source: http://forums.mydigi...t-GPT-very-easy

 

This is using same approach as UEFI MULTI - By wimb but for full OS on internal HDD

Attached Files


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#2 wimb

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Posted 04 February 2016 - 05:47 AM

I found this and I wanted to let you know:

 

 

Source: http://forums.mydigi...t-GPT-very-easy

 

This is using same approach as UEFI MULTI - By wimb but for full OS on internal HDD

 

I can confirm that Windows 10 can be installed on NTFS partition of MBR harddisk and is bootable UEFI secure through efi folder on FAT32 drive.

In fact I have two Windows 10 systems living next to each other on GPT and MBR harddisk 0 and 1 respectively as seen in this screenshot.

Also there are several wim boot image files visible, booting in UEFI secure mode from FAT32 USB Boot drive, as made by UEFI_MULTI.exe

UEFI_MULTI can Add Win 8/10 internal OS System and can Add WIM Boot Image files as Boot options in Boot Manager Menu on FAT32 drive.

 

Attached File  GPT_MBR_W10-2016-02-04_064006.png   390.63KB   5 downloads



#3 wimb

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 08:53 AM

After the introduction of Windows 8 in september 2012, then new computers with Windows 8 or 10 are characterized 
by having a GPT partitioned harddisk booting in UEFI secure mode through efi folder on hidden FAT32 boot drive.
 
In case of UEFI then Install of Windows 10 requires on most hardware a GPT partioned harddisk
e.g. as partioned by Setup in Unused space when USB-stick is used as made by Media Creation Tool.
This procedure is the standard for Install of Windows 10 x64 on Unpartioned harddisk and creates GPT recovery and efi partition for booting in UEFI mode.
 
In case of existing GPT partioned harddisk having FAT32 EFI Boot Drive and NTFS Installation Drive,
then WinNTSetup can be used in WinPE environment to prepare the Boot and Installation Drives for Install of Windows 10 x64
as described in the link:
 
Windows Disk Management and e.g. AOMEI Partition Assistant can NOT be used to create efi and msr GPT partitions and in that case Setup of Windows 10 will fail.
DiskPart is really needed to make efi msr and recovery partitions having the proper Partition type GUID.
 
MultiBoot of EFI Boot partition is possible and can be configured manually by using BOOTICE in WinPE environment.
The hidden FAT32 efi partition is first mounted as drive Z: by launching WinNTSetup_x64.exe
Win8.1SE and Win10 PE x64 WIM files and Win10x64 VHD can be combined in EFI MultiBoot with Win10 x64 installed on GPT NTFS partition.
For BootMenuPolicy we use setting Legacy and for WinPE WIM we need LoadOptionsString with value DISABLE_INTEGRITY_CHECKS
 
Attached File  w10-EFI-BCD-2016-03-14_184251.png   511.79KB   0 downloads == Attached File  w81-EFI-BCD-2016-03-14_183604.png   529.76KB   0 downloads

 

UEFI booting of a MBR partioned harddisk for Win10 x64 installed to partition is possible only on some hardware.

In that case it is possible to Install Windows 10 x64 on MBR harddisk with FAT32 Boot Drive and NTFS Installation partition.

 

MBR-FAT32 USB-Stick with WinPE WIM files can always boot in UEFI and BIOS mode and GPT is NOT needed.

MBR portable USB-harddisk with WinPE WIM and VHD files can always boot in UEFI and BIOS mode and GPT is NOT needed.

UFD_FORMAT.exe and UEFI_MULTI.exe are used to prepare such drives http://reboot.pro/to...ve/#entry168079

 

Another example is the Media Creation Tool of Microsoft that creates MBR-FAT32 USB-stick for Install or Repair of UEFI or BIOS computer.

 
Attached File  ESD-USB-2016-03-05_105533.png   705.44KB   0 downloads
 
How to prepare UEFI/MBR portable USB-harddisk that can be used by UEFI_MULTI.exe for booting WIM and VHD files in UEFI or BIOS mode
 
rem ==
rem == CreaPartMBR-Disk5.txt ==
rem ==
rem == These commands are used with DiskPart to create three partitions
rem == for a UEFI/MBR-based portable USB-harddisk that can be used by UEFI_MULTI.exe.
rem == Adjust disk number and partition sizes and label as necessary.
rem ==
select disk 5
clean
rem == 1. EFI Boot partition FAT32 20 GB - WinPE 8/10 x64 WIM files UEFI/BIOS booting ========
create partition primary size=20000
format quick fs=fat32 label="U-BOOT"
assign
active
rem == 2. Windows partition NTFS 100 GB - UEFI 8/10 x64 VHD files - BIOS XP/7/8/10 VHD ========
create partition primary size=100000
format quick fs=ntfs label="U-SYSTEM"
assign
rem == 3. Data partition NTFS - 7/8/10 ISO files for Install with WinNTSetup ==================
create partition primary
format quick fs=ntfs label="U-DATA"
assign
list volume
exit
rem ==
rem == Info https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/hardware/dn898504(v=vs.85).aspx
rem == Info https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh825677.aspx
rem ==
rem == In admin command window use: DiskPart /s G:\CreaPartMBR-Disk5.txt
rem ==

More Info on UEFI_MULTI.exe is here http://reboot.pro/to...ve/#entry168079

 

BIOS mode booting is NOT compatible with GPT partitioning.
For BIOS mode booting the Boot folder must be located on FAT32 (or NTFS) partition of MBR partitioned harddisk or USB-stick.
 
XP and Win7 are not compatible with GPT partitioning and are not compatible with UEFI boot mode.
XP has no access to GPT partitions and Win7 has access (read/write) to GPT partitions.
 
Win7 VHD's can NOT boot when located on GPT partitions and Win7 is not compatible with UEFI boot mode.
XP and Win7 VHD's can boot in BIOS mode (= CSM mode), when located on NTFS partition of MBR parttitioned harddisk.
 
 
Preparing W10x64P.vhd in WinNTSetup      ==     UEFI booting W10x64P.vhd from MBR USB   ==    MultiBoot Portable USB-harddisk with WinPE WIM and VHD
 

Attached File  W10-VHD-2016-03-05_121334.png   678.88KB   0 downloads == Attached File  W10-VHD-2016-03-05_124625.png   653.65KB   0 downloads == Attached File  W10-VHD-2016-03-05_131223.png   518.12KB   0 downloads



#4 stayboogy

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Posted 12 April 2016 - 02:47 AM

I'm the author of that thread at MDL.

 

I have since booted uefi windows 10 on mbr disks from various computers with limited secure boot support like my personal laptop as well as more modern machines with more advanced uefi bios capabilities, it works across all hardware i've tried.

 

I've completely redone several computers for customers and have left them access to their original oem windows 10 installs as a second os, all of them being uefi and gpt originally, but booting them off of mbr.

 

there is no need for any extra tools other than a proper WinPE10 environment.

 

i posted a quick tutorial in that same thread here:  http://forums.mydigi...l=1#post1213250

 

doing it with manual install by applying the install.wim in PE does work with 10240 builds of windows 10; most other versions i've tried manual install is broken and won't complete; but it is possible to "clean" install windows 10 with that build by doing a manual install and having it boot uefi on mbr as long as the bcd is edited as outlined in my tutorial.


Edited by stayboogy, 12 April 2016 - 02:50 AM.


#5 cdob

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Posted 12 April 2016 - 04:26 AM

does work with 10240 builds of windows 10; most other versions i've tried manual install is broken and won't complete

What about a windows update from 10240 to 10586?

#6 stayboogy

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Posted 12 April 2016 - 05:12 AM

What about a windows update from 10240 to 10586?

 

what i was referring to concerning build numbers only applies to manual install by applying the install.wim as a means of installing...

 

 

the method of booting uefi on an mbr disk works with all windows 10 x64 build numbers as far as i know as long as you follow my tutorial.


Edited by stayboogy, 12 April 2016 - 05:14 AM.


#7 wimb

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Posted 12 April 2016 - 05:59 AM

 

i posted a quick tutorial in that same thread here:  http://forums.mydigi...l=1#post1213250

 

 

Can you post that tutorial also here at reboot forum, since the link that you provided does not work (it requires a login).

 

Win 10 x64 installed in MBR VHD works for me on all equipment and GPT is not needed.

 

Install of Win 10 x64 on MBR partitioned harddisk failed for me for UEFI booting on some equipment e.g. ASUS Sabertooth Z170 mobo.

https://www.asus.com...TH-Z170-MARK-1/

In this case I can only install Win 10 x64 on a GPT partioned harddisk having an efi FAT32 partition as made by DiskPart or Win10x64 Setup.

 

But there is enough hardware that supports UEFI booting of Windows 10 x64 installed on MBR partitioned harddisk.

 

More info is here http://www.msfn.org/...comment=1117324

 

and here http://www.msfn.org/...comment=1120509



#8 stayboogy

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Posted 13 April 2016 - 03:10 AM

you many not have been able to get it to work on certain hardware, but i have had no trouble whatsoever on any manufacturers' machines i've tried thus far with real hardware--vhd or virtualization is not something i've need it for.  i haven't taken the time to check your links, but my method works flawlessly if directions are followed.

 

 

 

 

two methods are possible:

***for both methods, a proper WinPE 10 is to be desired with all the optional ADK packages installed to make this simpler and to be able to use third party tools correctly if you do like i do***



Method 1--For doing a manual, clean install of windows 10 on mbr hdd but booting uefi


(1) create one primary fat32 partition at the first of the mbr disk (NOT msr, NOT uefi in diskpart), set active, and make sure it is 200mb or more in size--mine is several GBs for example

(2) create one primary partition that windows 10 will reside on, format it ntfs--should not matter where it is located on disk as long as it is not first

(3) dism / gimagex apply the install.wim from your install media to the windows ntfs partition that was just created

 

***for this to work you will need windows 10 install media build 10240--other build versions i have tried, the manual install function is broken and won't complete setup at first boot; build 10240 works without a hitch for me everytime***

 

**if for some reason you receive a message at first boot that setup cannot complete then go to the next method--this is likely if using an AMD processor and some Intel iCores**

(4) dism / gimagex apply my efi.wim to the fat32 partition created earlier--you could just copy the files from the install media too if you want, i've just made it into a wim for easy apply

 

http://www.mediafire...arl/EFI_BCD.wim

(5) edit efi/microsoft/boot/bcd to point to the winload.efi of the windows install you just applied--i used bootice for this (see attached pic for specifics)

 

http://www.mediafire...99g/attach.png#

(6) now reboot your machine and go into your bios settings

(7) with secure boot on, and legacy support off, your new mbr windows install should boot into uefi mode on first boot and a new uefi entry will be added to your bios boot configuration

(8) one can also boot uefi with secure boot off, legacy support set to hybrid or legacy as long as legacy still supports booting uefi--each machine is different in this regard

(9) fastboot may be an issue for some--turn it off if for some reason your system doesn't boot--i have not had issues with it


Method 2--For Using an Existing Install (whether in uefi/gpt or legacy/mbr mode, doesn't matter)


(1) dism / gimagex capture a current x64 install (legacy or uefi) and delete the /boot folder from the wim if legacy and apply changes

(2) create one primary fat32 partition at the first of the mbr disk (not msr, not uefi in diskpart), set active, size doesn't matter just as long as it is at least 200mb or more,

(3) create the partition that your windows install will reside on (or format it if using the existing partition) and format it ntfs

(4) dism / gimagex apply the wim of your windows install captured earlier to this ntfs partition

(5) next apply my efi.wim to the fat32 partition created earlier

 

http://www.mediafire...arl/EFI_BCD.wim

(6) edit efi/microsoft/boot/bcd to point to the winload.efi of the windows install you just applied--i used bootice for this (see attached pic for the specifics)

 

http://www.mediafire...99g/attach.png#

 

(7) now reboot your machine and go into your bios settings

(8) with secure boot on, and legacy support off, your new mbr windows install should boot into uefi mode on first boot and a new uefi entry will be added to your bios boot configuration

(9) one can also boot uefi with secure boot off, legacy support set to hybrid or legacy as long as legacy still supports booting uefi--each machine is different in this regard.

(10) fastboot may be an issue for some--turn it off if for some reason your system doesn't boot--i have not had issues with it
 

 

 

These are just the simple directions to achieve uefi boot on mbr disk in Windows 10 that I have used with success over and over again.  Any skilled person will find easier ways around imaging as i've outlined in my steps above, but i figure it's best to keep it simple for those less inclined.

 

anyone who has questions, feel free to ask, but it's most likely answered above...

 

thanks, enjoy, and stayboogy


Edited by stayboogy, 13 April 2016 - 03:22 AM.


#9 wimb

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Posted 13 April 2016 - 01:50 PM

you many not have been able to get it to work on certain hardware, but i have had no trouble whatsoever on any manufacturers' machines i've tried thus far with real hardware--vhd or virtualization is not something i've need it for.  i haven't taken the time to check your links, but my method works flawlessly if directions are followed.

 

 

Thanks for posting your tutorial.

 

Method 2 is not a fresh install, so it is not so strange that it can be applied to MBR partitioned harddisk and then allows UEFI booting.

Method 1 is a fresh install and that compares to the method that I have described.

 

Allthough UEFI booting of Windows 10 x64 fresh installed on MBR partitioned harddisk works for a lot of machines,

there are still computers that require for that case a GPT partitioned harddisk and booting through efi FAT32 drive.

So in my opinion success or failure for the UEFI/MBR case depends on the hardware ....

 

:cheers:



#10 stayboogy

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Posted 13 April 2016 - 05:46 PM

Thanks for posting your tutorial.

 

Method 2 is not a fresh install, so it is not so strange that it can be applied to MBR partitioned harddisk and then allows UEFI booting.

Method 1 is a fresh install and that compares to the method that I have described.

 

Allthough UEFI booting of Windows 10 x64 fresh installed on MBR partitioned harddisk works for a lot of machines,

there are still computers that require for that case a GPT partitioned harddisk and booting through efi FAT32 drive.

So in my opinion success or failure for the UEFI/MBR case depends on the hardware ....

 

:cheers:

 

it's interesting that it has failed for you on some hardware to me.

 

on a brand new Asus desktop i7, build date November 2015, i was able to do this.  not sure what motherboard is in that thing but the bios is all PNP UEFI. 

 

 

i do have a question for you though:  how to boot a WinPE wim from my uefi bcd?  i have a x86 WinPE that i use for most things but for some reason it will not boot from my uefi bcd.  it always fails.  i assumed it was because it is x86 and not x64, but technically that shouldn't matter at all.

 

my workaround is to keep a legacy bcd on a flash drive and boot it that way but i'd rather boot it from my uefi bcd natively.



#11 wimb

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Posted 13 April 2016 - 07:56 PM

Computers with x64 UEFI are  booting through file efi\boot\bootx64.efi on FAT32 and in this case only x64 Win8/10PE boot.wim file can be used.

 

Your file x86 WinPE boot.wim can be used in UEFI mode to boot machines with x86 UEFI booting through efi\boot\bootia32.efi file on FAT32 drive.

Also you can use  x86 WinPE to boot x64 UEFI machines in BIOS-mode (is CSM mode).

 

The entry in BCD for booting a WIM file can be made manually by using BOOTICE.

For x64 PE you can also make use of UEFI_MULTI.exe to create such entry in BCD BootManager Menu.

 

http://www.msfn.org/...comment=1120509

http://reboot.pro/to...ve/#entry168079



#12 cdob

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Posted 13 April 2016 - 09:55 PM

i have a x86 WinPE that i use for most things but for some reason it will not boot from my uefi bcd.  it always fails.  i assumed it was because it is x86 and not x64, but technically that shouldn't matter at all.

You assume correctly, it's x86 and not x64
At a x64 UEFI, you can boot a x64 OS only.
At a x86 UEFI, you can boot a x86 OS only.

Often UEFI bit matches CPU bit:
a 64 bit UEFI is attached to a 64 bit CPU.
a 32 bit UEFI is attached to a 32 bit CPU.
Rare: a 32 bit UEFI is attached to a 64 bit CPU. Used at low RAM machines.
 

my workaround is to keep a legacy bcd on a flash drive

This is BIOS boot, boot to 16 bit.
And swap to either 32 bit or 64 bit.

#13 stayboogy

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 08:19 PM

You assume correctly, it's x86 and not x64
At a x64 UEFI, you can boot a x64 OS only.
At a x86 UEFI, you can boot a x86 OS only.

Often UEFI bit matches CPU bit:
a 64 bit UEFI is attached to a 64 bit CPU.
a 32 bit UEFI is attached to a 32 bit CPU.
Rare: a 32 bit UEFI is attached to a 64 bit CPU. Used at low RAM machines.
 
This is BIOS boot, boot to 16 bit.
And swap to either 32 bit or 64 bit.

 

i guess that is why i've never been able to get uefi working with x86 on my machine since it doesn't match my cpu. 



#14 Zoso_The_Internet_Tard

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Posted 15 April 2016 - 04:05 AM

While possible, booting UEFI on MBR would seem to serve no real purpose, unless you also wanted to boot other OSes in BIOS/MBR mode. Otherwise UEFI on GPT would seem to be the obvious way to go. I can't think of any other practical reasons for wanting such an unusual setup. This is why I also view milindsmart's BIOS on GPT methods as mostly impractical. Better just to stick to the normal ways of installing/running OSes unless you have a special-needs case for doing otherwise.


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#15 alacran

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Posted 15 April 2016 - 07:12 AM

i guess that is why i've never been able to get uefi working with x86 on my machine since it doesn't match my cpu. 

 

That is the main reason to have WinPE's made from Win10 in both architectures, just in case, you never know when you are going to deal with an x86, very unfrecuent on PC´s and Notebooks but very frecuent in HDMI sticks (for TV's) they have x64 processor but x86 OS and UEFI (because limited RAM & SD), maybe we can find some tablets loaded this way too.



#16 Zoso_The_Internet_Tard

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 08:51 AM

I'm wondering if the UEFI on MBR approach will work (boot Windows successfully) if Windows is installed on a logical partition within an extended container partition. I plan to run some tests in a VM later to see if this is a viable approach that meshes with my needs, and to see if this can be of long term use.

 

Thanks!



#17 Rusama

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Posted 30 May 2016 - 01:20 AM

You assume correctly, it's x86 and not x64
At a x64 UEFI, you can boot a x64 OS only.
At a x86 UEFI, you can boot a x86 OS only.

Often UEFI bit matches CPU bit:
a 64 bit UEFI is attached to a 64 bit CPU.
a 32 bit UEFI is attached to a 32 bit CPU.
Rare: a 32 bit UEFI is attached to a 64 bit CPU. Used at low RAM machines.
 
This is BIOS boot, boot to 16 bit.
And swap to either 32 bit or 64 bit.

 

Is it possible to create a single WinPE image that can boot with both 32-bit UEFI computer and 64-bit UEFI computer, without enabling CSM support?





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