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Windows 7 x64 UEFI install freezing at "Starting Windows.."

Discussion in 'Windows OS and Software' started by acowan, Mar 11, 2013.

  1. acowan

    acowan Notebook Enthusiast

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    Hi All,
    I've just had an 1080p XPS 13 L322X delivered. The first thing I did was take a full backup image of Windows 8 onto USB, updated the BIOS to the latest version, then flattened the hard disk partitions in order to make way for a fresh Windows 7 UEFI install.

    So I formatted my 8GB USB drive to FAT32, copied over my Win 7 ISO files, and pulled over a bootmgrgw.efi, renaming it to bootx64.efi - as per these instructions: Creating a UEFI/BIOS Windows 7 USB and installing to GPT partitions — Hodgin.ca

    I went into BIOS (F2), and added a high-priority boot option - the /efi/boot/bootx64.efi file on the USB keyfob. It boots OK - copying over the files from the USB, however as soon as it reaches the "Starting Windows" animation it freezes solid. No animation, no USB access, nothing.

    If I boot the USB drive using legacy BIOS (non-UEFI) mode, I can proceed through the installation. But I need Windows to run in UEFI as I need to test UEFI-related applications.

    Unfortunately this model has no optical drive; both the laptop's USB sockets are USB3 and there doesn't appear to be an easy way to disable this in the Dell's BIOS...

    Has anyone come across this before?

    Thanks,
    Alistair
     
  2. Prostar Computer

    Prostar Computer Company Representative

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    Why did you go this route as opposed to using the Windows 7 USB tool? I believe it works under UEFI, although Windows 7 does not have native support for USB 3.0.
     
  3. acowan

    acowan Notebook Enthusiast

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    Unfortunately, the Windows 7 tool formats USB drives in NTFS, which is fine for legacy BIOS - however UEFI requires a FAT32 volume.

    I've attempted slipstreaming the USB3 and chipset drivers into the boot.wim file, however still no luck. My thoughts on a driver problem is that legacy BIOS install route works fine, and AFAIK the legacy BIOS install will use the same drivers source as a UEFI install. If that's correct then it's unlikely to be a driver problem.
     
  4. Prostar Computer

    Prostar Computer Company Representative

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    Looking at another guide, the only variance is that EFI boot manager firmware step. Maybe this is what's causing the hangup?
     
  5. acowan

    acowan Notebook Enthusiast

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    Thanks, interesting that guide doesn't mention copying across the bootfw.efi to boot64x.efi, will give it another shot.

    Worst comes to the worst, I'll restore to Windows 8 and re-partition to allow me to dual boot Linux. I'll just have to rely on third-party tools to reconfigure Win8 into Win7, but I imagine the experience of Win8 pretending to be Win7 won't compare to a pure Win7 experience...
     
  6. Prostar Computer

    Prostar Computer Company Representative

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    Aye... Well, good luck! Hopefully someone else here has a fix, and if not, keep us posted on your findings. :)
     

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