Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Can Windows 8.1 be installed as legacy MBR? (Non-UEFI)

  1. #1


    Posts : 241
    Windows 8.1x64 Pro

    Can Windows 8.1 be installed as legacy MBR? (Non-UEFI)


    and if so, will it perform slower? Or only boot time will be affected? Any other disadvantage of doing so? Thanks

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  2. #2


    Yes, it can. I have 8.1 on a older Toshiba Satellite U205-S5057 laptop. I doubt UEFI makes any difference as far as performance goes.
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  3. #3


    Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts : 6,490
    Windows 10 Education 64 Bit


    Yes, I've also installed it on PC's with non UEFI BIOS. I'm with Ztrucker, I don't think it makes any difference. My Laptop that has the UEFI BIOS has an SSD in it so I really can't compare one too the other. My laptop blows my desktop PC's out of water anyway.
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  4. #4


    Posts : 376
    W8.1, W7


    Posting this using w8.1 on a mbr netbook from 2008, ticking along happily (when not asking the poor old N270 processor to do too many things at the same time :O) Installed & works fine.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails old.PNG  
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  5. #5


    Quote Originally Posted by antares View Post
    and if so, will it perform slower? Or only boot time will be affected? Any other disadvantage of doing so? Thanks
    Why it wouldn't. Actually much less complicated with legacy BIOS than with UEFI.
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  6. #6


    Posts : 241
    Windows 8.1x64 Pro


    Thanks everyone for your replies!. I guess Legacy is the way to go as long as the "newer" UEFI does not offer any noticeable advantage. What about the GPT file format? Is it better than NTFS?
    Also, any idea how to set Legacy during Win 8.1 installation process?
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  7. #7


    Hafnarfjörđur IS
    Posts : 4,376
    Linux Centos 7, W8.1, W7, W2K3 Server W10


    Quote Originally Posted by antares View Post
    Thanks everyone for your replies!. I guess Legacy is the way to go as long as the "newer" UEFI does not offer any noticeable advantage. What about the GPT file format? Is it better than NTFS?
    Also, any idea how to set Legacy during Win 8.1 installation process?
    Hi there

    GPT is FAR better than MBR -- you can have as many partitions as you like and no 2 TB size limit for the disks. You can also use DYNAMIC disks and span Volumes -- that way for example you can combine several smaller PHYSICAL volumes into what Windows sees as a SINGLE DISK - quite useful for example if you have 4 750 GB volumes which you want to treat as a single large 3TB volume for say a large music / video data base.

    If your system is NON UEFI then you can't have the BOOT device on a GPT disk - so on a NON UEFI desktop have say the OS on an SSD while make the other disks GPT.

    UEFI does NOT MEAN that you have to have protected boot switched on - protected boot is another thing entirely which means the OS keys (for Windows) are embedded in the BIOS itself. IMO this is a bit of a nightmare - especially if you want to test and install other OS'es or even do things like a STAND ALONE recovery using a bootable program such as Acronis / Free Macrium etc.

    There's nothing wrong in leaving UEFI switched on. GPT volumes (apart from the boot) DO NOT HAVE TO BE ON A UEFI ENABLED BIOS though --huge misunderstandings on these topics seem evident.

    Cheers
    jimbo
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  8. #8


    Jimbo— Are you saying that as long as a disk is used for storage only and partitioned with GPT format, it can be read, added to & moved to or copied from by XP, Vista, 7, 8 & 8.1 As long as the OS is on a separate drive completely.

    I just don't want to misunderstand what you said above.
    Thanks
    Ron
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  9. #9


    Posts : 43
    W7 , W8 Pro x4


    pcRat
    jimbo is correct . As of Win 2000 all MS os's support GPT disks . They are not bootable in 2000 & XP .

    Using GPT Drives

    j
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10


    Thanks for response. I just wanted to confirm my interpretation wasn't wrong. It works fine using GPT
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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