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UEFI Bootable USB Flash Drive - Create in Windows


genet

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The 1st option from your guide ("1. How to create UEFI Boot Mode compatible Windows 8 64-bit USB flash drive, which is only bootable in UEFI Boot Mode.") seems to be missing something. It says that you just need to format the flash drive in FAT32 and then copy (extract) the contents of the Windows 8.1 ISO to the USB flash drive. But, I think it's not going to be bootable because the flash drive is not marked as 'active'.
UEFI boot mode do not use boot sectors on the USB flash drive (and the hard drive) and do not require active partition to be set.

While the 3rd option ("3. How to create Legacy BIOS Boot Mode compatible Windows 7/8 32/64-bit USB flash drive, which is only bootable in Legacy BIOS Boot Mode.") Correct me if I'm wrong but, isn't it that as writen in Rufus in Partition scheme and target system type: MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI computers -- shouldn't it be for both UEFI and legacy BIOS bootable, provided that you set the file system as FAT32 instead of NTFS?
I have not tried, but...

https://github.com/pbatard/rufus/wi..._that_can_be_booted_in_both_BIOS_and_EFI_mode

Why doesn't Rufus create a Windows installation USB that can be booted in both BIOS and EFI mode?

If you are using a Windows ISO that can be dual booted in EFI or BIOS mode, you may find that the USB created by Rufus does not preserve the dual EFI+BIOS boot feature.

Especially, the Windows 8 installation ISOs, that support both EFI and BIOS boot, will be converted to either one or the other mode, depending on the option you selected under Partition scheme and target type: If you select the first option (MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI computers), the USB will be bootable in BIOS-mode only (even on UEFI systems), and if you select any of the other options, the USB will be bootable in EFI mode only (and not bootable on a BIOS system at all).

This is done to avoid confusion, as it can be difficult for non expert users to know whether they actually booted in EFI or BIOS mode, when an USB Flash Drive can be booted in both modes, and installation is meant to be a one-off operation, targeting a very specific machine and boot mode. You probably don't want to go through a full Windows installation, only to realize that it was installed in BIOS mode, when you really wanted it installed in EFI mode.

By ensuring that only one or the other can be used for Windows installation, there is no room for error with regards to which mode that was used for installation.

Note that this does not apply for Windows To Go, and that you can also enable dual EFI+BIOS boot by using the Alt-E cheat mode (see below) with Rufus 2.0 or higher.
 

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    UEFI firmware (BIOS) embedded Windows 8 product key.

son goku

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I create mine with diskaprt for my wife's Acer Laptop. It is very fussy as how the thumb drive is created. That laptop never ever lists a UEFI install option for the thumb drive. It did install in UEFI mode though.
Option 2
select disk #clean
create partition primary
format fs=fat32 quick
active
assign
list volume
exit
My ASUS laptop on the other hand is fine with NTFS formatted drives, even for UEFI installs. I use the Windows 7 DVD download tool to create its thumb drive, and install thumb drives for my two desktop PC's. They don't have UEFI BIOS. Up until we got the Acer I always used the Windows 7 DVD Download Tool.
Thanks alphnumeric! One last thing though, If I you use the Option 2 which is as you described the Diskpart method, will the created thumb drive installer be both UEFI and BIOS bootable (provided that you set the correct boot mode in the UEFI settings)?
With regards to your ASUS laptop being able to install in UEFI even in NTFS formatted thumbdrive, I read your discussions with Akeo and if I remember correctly, I think Akeo said that it is due to the ASUS UEFI firmware having both a FAT and NTFS driver or module and hence, it allows install of UEFI in NTFS formatted thumbdrive.

The 1st option from your guide ("1. How to create UEFI Boot Mode compatible Windows 8 64-bit USB flash drive, which is only bootable in UEFI Boot Mode.") seems to be missing something. It says that you just need to format the flash drive in FAT32 and then copy (extract) the contents of the Windows 8.1 ISO to the USB flash drive. But, I think it's not going to be bootable because the flash drive is not marked as 'active'.
UEFI boot mode do not use boot sectors on the USB flash drive (and the hard drive) and do not require active partition to be set.
Oh ok. I learned something new today.

While the 3rd option ("3. How to create Legacy BIOS Boot Mode compatible Windows 7/8 32/64-bit USB flash drive, which is only bootable in Legacy BIOS Boot Mode.") Correct me if I'm wrong but, isn't it that as writen in Rufus in Partition scheme and target system type: MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI computers -- shouldn't it be for both UEFI and legacy BIOS bootable, provided that you set the file system as FAT32 instead of NTFS?
I have not tried, but...
https://github.com/pbatard/rufus/wi..._that_can_be_booted_in_both_BIOS_and_EFI_mode

Why doesn't Rufus create a Windows installation USB that can be booted in both BIOS and EFI mode?


If you are using a Windows ISO that can be dual booted in EFI or BIOS mode, you may find that the USB created by Rufus does not preserve the dual EFI+BIOS boot feature.

Especially, the Windows 8 installation ISOs, that support both EFI and BIOS boot, will be converted to either one or the other mode, depending on the option you selected under Partition scheme and target type: If you select the first option (MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI computers), the USB will be bootable in BIOS-mode only (even on UEFI systems), and if you select any of the other options, the USB will be bootable in EFI mode only (and not bootable on a BIOS system at all).

This is done to avoid confusion, as it can be difficult for non expert users to know whether they actually booted in EFI or BIOS mode, when an USB Flash Drive can be booted in both modes, and installation is meant to be a one-off operation, targeting a very specific machine and boot mode. You probably don't want to go through a full Windows installation, only to realize that it was installed in BIOS mode, when you really wanted it installed in EFI mode.

By ensuring that only one or the other can be used for Windows installation, there is no room for error with regards to which mode that was used for installation.

Note that this does not apply for Windows To Go, and that you can also enable dual EFI+BIOS boot by using the Alt-E cheat mode (see below) with Rufus 2.0 or higher.
I always thought that Rufus creates USB flash drive that's both UEFI and BIOS bootable but that seems not to be the case. It's a good thing you pointed it out to me.

Thank you very much genet. You've been of great help!
 

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alphanumeric

slightly off center
VIP Member
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I create mine with diskaprt for my wife's Acer Laptop. It is very fussy as how the thumb drive is created. That laptop never ever lists a UEFI install option for the thumb drive. It did install in UEFI mode though.
Option 2
select disk #clean
create partition primary
format fs=fat32 quick
active
assign
list volume
exit
My ASUS laptop on the other hand is fine with NTFS formatted drives, even for UEFI installs. I use the Windows 7 DVD download tool to create its thumb drive, and install thumb drives for my two desktop PC's. They don't have UEFI BIOS. Up until we got the Acer I always used the Windows 7 DVD Download Tool.
Thanks alphnumeric! One last thing though, If I you use the Option 2 which is as you described the Diskpart method, will the created thumb drive installer be both UEFI and BIOS bootable (provided that you set the correct boot mode in the UEFI settings)?
With regards to your ASUS laptop being able to install in UEFI even in NTFS formatted thumbdrive, I read your discussions with Akeo and if I remember correctly, I think Akeo said that it is due to the ASUS UEFI firmware having both a FAT and NTFS driver or module and hence, it allows install of UEFI in NTFS formatted thumbdrive.
I've used thumb drives done via diskpart to install in legacy mode on my desktop PC's. Yes, ny ASUS has the module in it to allow UEFI installs from NTFS drives. It's too bad they all didn't do this as it makes it really easy to do UEFI installs. If they all did it we wouldn't be having this discussion.
 

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son goku

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Ok. Thanks for the confirmation that the Diskpart method works with both UEFI and Legacy BIOS mode.

You're exactly right. If only the other major Board Manufacturers did what Asus has done then all these UEFI problems and limitations wouldn't have existed.
 

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base1268

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Hey Shawn... ( or whoever else can jump in and help :party: )

Been at this a while and seriously need some help.... My brain is so cloudy from trying to work this out for 8 hours searching online for an answer and trying anything I can think of, that I even posted this on the 7 forum before realising it should be here so you as OP and writer of tutorial can hopefully sort this out.

Got a new machine (Qosmio X70-B-102) which like most tries to force me to use Windows 8 platform preinstalled... no chance thankyou... my machine and I'll run it how I choose to.

So my plan has always been to do a clean install of 7 x 64 pro which I already own.

Initially I learn that the BIOS needs to be changed from UEFI to CSM... no prob that's easy... but the hybrid SSHD is set up with GPT partitions and my 7 wont install unless they are MBR.

At the advanced options screen I can delete all partitons and format but I end up with one single unallocated drive that remains as a GPT cos the advanced options don't offer the necessary conversion to MBR.

So... I do some reading and discover that in fact Windows 7 WILL install to GPT providing the installer I use can do that and as you efficiently describe and teach, the RUFUS installer allows us to select 'GPT partition scheme for UEFI computers'

Hmmm... brilliant I thought... I can keep using the UEFI firmware advantages by installing onto GPT partitions.

So I got Rufus and created my bootable windows 7 x64 Pro selecting the 'GPT partition scheme.....'

Only change I then make to the BIOS is to disable secure boot and boot order to USB.... oh AND turn off 'Fast Boot'

Standard 'Windows loading' white progress bar on black screen.... then the recognisable logo begins to go thru it's motions of 'Starting Windows' and the 4 coloured squares fly around to form the logo.... only it never completes and it hangs !!

Question 1.... Are there enough benefits to keeping the UEFI and sticking with GPT partition and trying to pursue with installing this way OR should I just forget that and open a command window from the language screen with Shift + F10 and open DISKPART to clean and convert the new single partition to MBR...?

Question 2... Anyone got any idea why this installer is hanging at the point listed above...? And if so is it fixable?

I used the latest RUFUS available 1.4.12 (although I note there's a beta version 2.0 available and wondering if it may just address this issue..?)

All help greatly appreciated

Nick....
 
Last edited:

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base1268

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Hello Nick, and welcome to Eight Forums. :)

With Windows 7, I'd say skip UEFI.
Cheers Shawn... and thanks for the fast reply... I was about to take a break completely.

I'm one of those people who hates being defeated.... do you know 'why' my laptop doesn't like the Rufus USB installer set-up exactly as you describe...?

I read the quote that arkhi listed on his 7 forum tutorial :

"In addition to better interoperability, UEFI firmware provides several technical advantages:"

UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) - Install Windows 7 with - Windows 7 Help Forums

This got me thinking that my 7x64 pro would run at it's best on my new machine if it can take advantage of using UEFI.... so any heads up you can enlighten me with as to why my installer 'stalls' would be greatly appreciated.

In the mean time just to get up and running I will go with legacy BIOS and convert the disk to MBR so it will install.

BTW... will my 8GB NAND flash become redundant installing this way...? Just curious... I'll be cloning the Hybrid onto a big SSD once my money tree bears fruit

Nick
 

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mvp
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Nick,

Your NAND flash should still be usable,

If you wanted to, you could install 64-bit W7 with UEFI, but you would still need to set firmware to use UEFI instead of legacy, and wipe and convert the disk to MBR first.
 

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    Intel i7-8700K OC'd to 5 GHz
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    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
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    16 GB (8GBx2) G.SKILL TridentZ DDR4 3200 MHz
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    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING
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    3 x 27" Asus VE278Q
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    250GB Samsung 960 EVO M.2,
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    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
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    Arris SB8200 cable modem,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
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base1268

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Shawn...

I'm installed and currently loading the 7x64 drivers having converted the disk to MBR using Diskpart from cmd during installation and of course I'm running in compatibility mode.

So as the disk is now already MBR converted can I simply reinstall in UEFI mode...? where do I go to set the firmware to UEFI instead of legacy...?
 

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    8.1 pro + Ubuntu
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    Laptop
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    Samsung RV-511-S01UK
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    i3 380M @2.53Ghz
    Motherboard
    Samsung
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    6GB @1066Mhz
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Initially I learn that the BIOS needs to be changed from UEFI to CSM... no prob that's easy...
It's the same as you did above, but change it back to UEFI instead.

Afterwards, yep, you would boot from the UEFI USB, start installation, delete all partitions on the disk so it's unallocated, select the unallocated disk, and let installation finish.
 

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System One

  • OS
    64-bit Windows 10
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self built
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K OC'd to 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    16 GB (8GBx2) G.SKILL TridentZ DDR4 3200 MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    3 x 27" Asus VE278Q
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    250GB Samsung 960 EVO M.2,
    256GB OCZ Vector,
    6TB WD Black WD6001FZWX
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    OCZ Series Gold OCZZ1000M 1000W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless K800
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master
    Internet Speed
    1 Gb/s Download and 35 Mb/s Upload
    Browser
    Internet Explorer 11
    Antivirus
    Malwarebyte Anti-Malware Premium
    Other Info
    Logitech Z625 speaker system,
    Logitech BRIO 4K Pro webcam,
    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
    Linksys EA9500 router,
    Arris SB8200 cable modem,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
    Lumia 1520 phone

base1268

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Hmmm... so I now need to try and understand whether first of all it's actually worth me working out how to create a UEFI win 7x64 usb installer that works and compare that to the actual tangible benefit of having UEFI mode.

The Rufus installer in GPT/UEFI kept hanging as I said originally tho someone else suggested that it's important to ensure none of the settings are changed once the ISO is loaded and I can't recall if I did... or not... I certainly created the installer several times with same result.

The second option to create looks rather more long winded.

And I'll need to reload all the drivers again.

This laptop is 100% purely for using as a video editor.... with Sony Vegas Pro and possibly a couple of codec utilities.

Would I notice the difference between CSM and UEFI...?
 

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System One

  • OS
    8.1 pro + Ubuntu
    Computer type
    Laptop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Samsung RV-511-S01UK
    CPU
    i3 380M @2.53Ghz
    Motherboard
    Samsung
    Memory
    6GB @1066Mhz
    Graphics Card(s)
    Nvidia 315m Discrete 1GB VRAM
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    1366 x 768
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    kaspersky on 7.... None on 8.1

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base,

Using Option One would be the easiest way to create a bootable UEFI USB. Just be sure to double check all the settings before starting.

Personally, I don't think you'll notice any difference in performance between UEFI and Legacy (CSM) with Windows 7.
 

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System One

  • OS
    64-bit Windows 10
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self built
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K OC'd to 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    16 GB (8GBx2) G.SKILL TridentZ DDR4 3200 MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    3 x 27" Asus VE278Q
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    250GB Samsung 960 EVO M.2,
    256GB OCZ Vector,
    6TB WD Black WD6001FZWX
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    OCZ Series Gold OCZZ1000M 1000W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless K800
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master
    Internet Speed
    1 Gb/s Download and 35 Mb/s Upload
    Browser
    Internet Explorer 11
    Antivirus
    Malwarebyte Anti-Malware Premium
    Other Info
    Logitech Z625 speaker system,
    Logitech BRIO 4K Pro webcam,
    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
    Linksys EA9500 router,
    Arris SB8200 cable modem,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
    Lumia 1520 phone

son goku

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Posts
11
The Rufus installer in GPT/UEFI kept hanging as I said originally tho someone else suggested that it's important to ensure none of the settings are changed once the ISO is loaded and I can't recall if I did... or not... I certainly created the installer several times with same result.
As far as I know, Rufus (by design) only allows to create a USB flash drive that's UEFI bootable ONLY or Legacy BIOS bootable ONLY, and it does not allow to create a USB flash drive that can be booted in both UEFI and Legacy BIOS mode at the same time. I think that is what is causing your hang problem.

If you want to boot and install in CSM mode, you need to set the Partition scheme and target system type in Rufus to "MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI computers" which will make your USB flash drive Legacy BIOS bootable ONLY.

If you want to boot and install in native UEFI mode you need to set the Partition scheme and target system type in Rufus to either "MBR partition scheme for UEFI computer" or "GPT partition scheme for UEFI computer" which will make your USB flash drive UEFI bootable ONLY.

And make sure you set the boot mode in your UEFI firmware settings to UEFI mode or to CSM mode correspondingly -- that is UEFI mode for UEFI bootable flash drive, or CSM mode for BIOS bootable flash drive.

I hope this helps
 

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genet

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879
If you install in (CSM) mode in UEFI computer, will it be able to boot from disks over 2 TB?
Yes, but you will not be able to use the disk space beyond 2 TB since MBR does not support hard drives larger than 2 TB.

Legacy BIOS Boot Mode 1.png

Legacy BIOS Boot Mode 2.png

Legacy BIOS Boot Mode 3.png
 

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System One

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    Windows 10
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As far as I know, Rufus (by design) only allows to create a USB flash drive that's UEFI bootable ONLY or Legacy BIOS bootable ONLY, and it does not allow to create a USB flash drive that can be booted in both UEFI and Legacy BIOS mode at the same time. I think that is what is causing your hang problem.

If you want to boot and install in CSM mode, you need to set the Partition scheme and target system type in Rufus to "MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI computers" which will make your USB flash drive Legacy BIOS bootable ONLY.

If you want to boot and install in native UEFI mode you need to set the Partition scheme and target system type in Rufus to either "MBR partition scheme for UEFI computer" or "GPT partition scheme for UEFI computer" which will make your USB flash drive UEFI bootable ONLY.

And make sure you set the boot mode in your UEFI firmware settings to UEFI mode or to CSM mode correspondingly -- that is UEFI mode for UEFI bootable flash drive, or CSM mode for BIOS bootable flash drive.

I hope this helps
The "MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI computers" setting will have the USB show up twice in the boot menu for legacy BIOS (CSM) and UEFI.

You just have to have your UEFI firmware set properly, and select the one you want to install Windows with.

Rufus.png
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    64-bit Windows 10
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self built
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K OC'd to 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    16 GB (8GBx2) G.SKILL TridentZ DDR4 3200 MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    3 x 27" Asus VE278Q
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    250GB Samsung 960 EVO M.2,
    256GB OCZ Vector,
    6TB WD Black WD6001FZWX
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    OCZ Series Gold OCZZ1000M 1000W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless K800
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master
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son goku

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Oh, seems I was wrong? So you mean that the "MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI computers" setting in Rufus will have the flash drive bootable and installable in both native UEFI and legacy BIOS (CSM) (provided that you set it in the UEFI firmware properly)? Have yo tested it to be the case?
Because the way I understand it, the "MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI computers" in Rufus is only for legacy BIOS (CSM) as when you point it to that option, it displays a description: "If you have an UEFI computer and want to install an OS in EFI mode however, you should select one of the other options."

I could be wrong and that Rufus might have been updated already to support EFI+BIOS boot but, the FAQ entry of Rufus still states that:

Why doesn't Rufus create a Windows installation USB that can be booted in both BIOS and EFI mode?
If you are using a Windows ISO that can be dual booted in EFI or BIOS mode, you may find that the USB created by Rufus does not preserve the dual EFI+BIOS boot feature.
Especially, the Windows 8 installation ISOs, that support both EFI and BIOS boot, will be converted to either one or the other mode, depending on the option you selected under Partition scheme and target type: If you select the first option (MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI computers), the USB will be bootable in BIOS-mode only (even on UEFI systems), and if you select any of the other options, the USB will be bootable in EFI mode only (and not bootable on a BIOS system at all).
This is done to avoid confusion, as it can be difficult for non expert users to know whether they actually booted in EFI or BIOS mode, when an USB Flash Drive can be booted in both modes, and installation is meant to be a one-off operation, targeting a very specific machine and boot mode. You probably don't want to go through a full Windows installation, only to realize that it was installed in BIOS mode, when you really wanted it installed in EFI mode.
By ensuring that only one or the other can be used for Windows installation, there is no room for error with regards to which mode that was used for installation.
Note that this does not apply for Windows To Go, and that you can also enable dual EFI+BIOS boot by using the Alt-E cheat mode (see below) with Rufus 2.0 or higher.
 

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Brink

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mvp
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Yep, tested and done it several times. :)
 

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    Arris SB8200 cable modem,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
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son goku

New Member
Posts
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Oh thanks Brink! So it seems that the "MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI computers" in Rufus does indeed create a flash drive that can boot/install in both BIOS and UEFI mode despite the FAQ entry. It seems that the Ruufus's FAQs just isn't updated I guess.
May I know what version of Rufus have you tested it with?

Thanks!
 

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