Windows 10: Possible to sysprep on UEFI box, then install HDD in Legacy BIOS box?

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  1.    17 Feb 2018 #1

    Possible to sysprep on UEFI box, then install HDD in Legacy BIOS box?


    I need to install Windows 10 on my father in laws computer, but it is an older legacy bios Core 2 Duo machine.

    For Windows 7 before, I have taken my time and installed the OS and all the apps at my home on one of my boxes, sysprepped it, then simply transplanted the HDD.

    I have a feeling UEFI will complicate matters with this approach.

    What steps would I need to take to make this work?

    Would GRUB maybe be able to help?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    17 Feb 2018 #2

    Sysprepping is easy enough but converting UEFI to legacy bios takes a bit of effort. It is easy to do it other way round though.

    The easiest way is probably to do it all in a virtual machine set up as a legacy bios install.

    Hyper-v is really good for this as you can produce a sysprepped vhd which you can transfer to other pc, and create a boot entry.

    I would install PRO in a vhd on your pc as a dual boot option on your pc if you are using home so you can run hyper-v. It does not matter if the PRO is unactivated.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    17 Feb 2018 #3

    cereberus said: View Post
    It does not matter if the PRO is unactivated.
    Except that it would violate the EULA which we are not supposed to advise people to do on this forum.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    18 Feb 2018 #4

    NavyLCDR said: View Post
    Except that it would violate the EULA which we are not supposed to advise people to do on this forum.
    Oh come on - loads of users including very prominent ones here have said they use vms unactivated.

    Anyway, there is nothing wrong with running it on a trial basis.

    However, OP - so you do not violate EULA install the 90 day trial Enterprise edition.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    19 Feb 2018 #5

    If you can install Windows in BIOS mode on your UEFI system then you should be able to move it to the older system.

    You have to enable legacy mode/CSM in your UEFI and then boot to Windows Setup using BIOS/legacy mode. How this is presented to you in the boot selection menu depends on your manufacturer. Then after installation you can confirm that it installed in BIOS mode by checking that there's no EFI partition.

    To see what mode you booted into in Windows Setup, press Shift-F10 to open a command prompt:

    Code:
    wpeutil UpdateBootInfo
    reg query HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control /v PEFirmwareType
    If the PEFirmwareType is 0x2 then you booted into UEFI mode. If it's 0x1 then you booted into BIOS/CSM mode.

    Click image for larger version. 

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      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    19 Feb 2018 #6

    If you're going to upgrade windows 7 to windows 10 it will work just fine and it will retain the MBR setup. If you're going to do a clean install....you'll need to formatt the HDD and then install windows 10 (clean install) then it will setup your HDD in GPT.

    Legacy BIOS and UEFI BIOS has nothing to do with the OS. It has to do with partitions. There are some options/features in UEFI that legacy BIOS doesn't have which makes it more secure and harder for some would be hacker to manipulate if they had access.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    19 Feb 2018 #7

    Plankton said: View Post
    If you're going to upgrade windows 7 to windows 10 it will work just fine and it will retain the MBR setup. If you're going to do a clean install....you'll need to formatt the HDD and then install windows 10 (clean install) then it will setup your HDD in GPT.

    Legacy BIOS and UEFI BIOS has nothing to do with the OS. It has to do with partitions. There are some options/features in UEFI that legacy BIOS doesn't have which makes it more secure and harder for some would be hacker to manipulate if they had access.
    OP wants to go install a sysprepped custom image on legacy bios pc, but his pc is UEFI.

    As I said earlier, easiest way is to prepare legacy bios custom image inside a virtual machine which avoids faffing around with e.g. installing 7 as legacy dual boot with UEFI 10.

    A VM is perfect for the task and OP can just follow key steps of @Kari's sysprep tutorial.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  • Posts : 13,777
    Windows 10 Pro
       19 Feb 2018 #8

    @darthfoolish, this is both extremely easy and completely OK to do without activating Windows 10 on the HDD you will send to your father-in-law. In fact, it's important that you forget this nonsense about it being against EULA; for the first, it isn't. You'll do this in an hour or two, well covered by the grace period you are allowed to use Windows before activating it, and for the second, in this case it would be plain stupid to activate Windows just to install it, then lose the activation when HDD is plugged in on another PC.

    Personally I will never use a product key and activate my reference machines, physical or VM, when I know that I will only use Windows on it for an hour or so, to create a deployment image.

    Simple instructions. Really, don't panic because of length of this post, this is simple. See screenshots of each step at the end of this post:

    1.) Connect the HDD going to your father-in-law as secondary HDD on your PC, boot to your own Windows 10.

    2.) Open an elevated Command Prompt, start Windows Disk Partitiononing Utility with following command:

    diskpart

    3.) Check the disk number of that HDD going to your father-in-law and select it with following two commands

    list disk

    sel disk 2

    In this example case now, the selected HDD in question is Disk 2

    4.) Clean the disk:

    clean

    5.) Convert it to MBR:

    convert MBR

    6.) Create 500 MB System Reserved partition:

    create part primary size=500

    7.) Format and label it:

    format quick fs=ntfs label="System"

    8.) Assign a temporary drive letter for it:

    assign letter="S"

    9.) ... and mark this System reserved partition as active:

    active

    10.) Create Windows partition using rest of the disk:

    create part primary

    11.) Format and label Windows partition:

    format quick fs=ntfs label="Windows 10"

    12.) Assign a temporary drive letter for Windows partition:

    assign letter="Z"

    13.) Exit DISKPART:

    exit

    14.) Mount a Windows 10 ISO, in my case now it got drive letter J:. Check which Windows editions it contains to find out index number for edition you want to install to your father-in-law:

    dism /Get-WimInfo /WimFile:J:\Sources\install.wim

    In my case now I decided to install Pro edition, index #8.

    15.) Install (deploy) selected edition to partition created in steps 10 through 12 above:

    dism /Apply-Image /ImageFile:J:\Sources\install.wim /Index:8 /ApplyDir:Z:\

    16.) Add newly deployed Windows to your PC's boot menu:

    bcdboot Z:\Windows

    17.) Windows on partition Z: is now default OS, the one booted to if user makes no selection from boot menu in given time, default 30 seconds. Let it be default for now, just rename the boot menu entry to better recognize correct entry. In my case now I renamed it to W10MBR:

    bcdedit /set {default} description "W10MBR"

    18.) Restart your PC, booting to W10MBR. When it arrives to Region Selection screen at the beginning of OOBE (Windows Welcome), reboot to Audit Mode:



    19.) Follow instructions in this tutorial to customize your father-in-law's Windows10: Create media for automated unattended install of Windows 10 Windows 10 Tutorials

    In your case you can forget steps Three, Six and Eight in above mentioned tutorial, only doing the highlighted ones. In Step Seven you only need to do 7.1 through 7.6 and then 7.9 (screenshot from tutorial):

    Click image for larger version. 

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    In fact, if no customizations are required you can forget everything else in that tutorial except Step 7.9, the Sysprep.

    20.) When done and PC has shut down after Sysprep, dismount the HDD and send it to your father-in-law. Depending on level of customizations you choose to do, this whole process takes anything from half an hour to two hours.

    Your father-in-law naturally needs a valid license / product key to activate Windows 10 when this HDD is booted on his PC and he starts to use Windows.

    Screenshot to cover steps 1. through 13.:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Screenshot, step 14. (checking edition index):

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Screenshot for steps 15. through 17.:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    That's it.

    Kari
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  •    19 Feb 2018 #9

    Agreed


    Kari said: View Post
    @darthfoolish, this is both extremely easy and completely OK to do without activating Windows 10 on the HDD you will send to your father-in-law. In fact, it's important that you forget this nonsense about it being @ EULA; for the first, it isn't. You'll do this in an hour or two, well covered by the grace period you are allowed to use Windows before activating it, and for the second, in this case it would be plain stupid to activate Windows just to install it, then lose the activation when HDD is plugged in on another PC.

    Personally I will never use a product key and activate my reference machines, physical or VM, when I know that I will only use Windows on it for an hour or so, to create a deployment image.
    Kari
    I agree - it is insane to expect users to activate everything especially VMs for just a one-off task.

    We obviously should as a responsible forum not actively encourage usrs to run unactivated versions on a permanent basis.

    However, for cases like this where it is clear the end result will be a totally legitimate permanent installation, I do not see why we should get so uptight about it - common sense should prevail

    I suggested vms but your way of dual booting the hdd is equally as good as it does not impact existing installation.

    Just one minor addition to your instructions - when OP has finished the job, OP should remove the dual boot entry using msconfig.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  •    19 Feb 2018 #10

    cereberus said: View Post
    OP wants to go install a sysprepped custom image on legacy bios pc, but his pc is UEFI.

    As I said earlier, easiest way is to prepare legacy bios custom image inside a virtual machine which avoids faffing around with e.g. installing 7 as legacy dual boot with UEFI 10.

    A VM is perfect for the task and OP can just follow key steps of @Kari's sysprep tutorial.
    Ah...got it....well I missed that completely. Kari's post made it very clear as to what the OP is intending on doing with it. Smart and time saving.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


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