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T O P I C     R E V I E W
Tom- geeking around
Member # 2876
 - posted March 17, 2016 09:49
Hello all!

It sure has been a while since I last posted :-) but here I come back to ya with a tough issue that I can't solve so far, and googling only raised more questions than solutions.

here goes:
I have a laptop with two drives in it:
.) a 128 GB SSD containing OS and applications
.) a 320 GB HDD containing data (music/photos)

I recently upgraded Win7 to Win 10 - which I like. BUT I realized I have been using the SSD in MBR mode, instead of GPT to take advantage of UEFI. I checked: my laptop supports UEFI.

So... damned... I have the OS settled in, configured and all my applications configured and tweaked to my liking - BUT not in GPT, which is needed for UEFI.
I want to take advantage of UEFI, but not do a full reinstall of Windows 10. I have too much stuff settled in, and programs I need I don't even know where I got them from anymore. Namely some shady MS-Office and Adobe Lightroom installs that don't ask for serials (ifyouknowwhatImean)....

My humble question to you fellow geeks:
What are my options to convert my OS drive to GPT while retaining all my stuff?
I thought making a backup image to an external HDD using Win10's backup feature would retain all my stuff, but also retain the MBR partition.

Thank you for reading so far :-) suggestions?
Member # 123
 - posted March 17, 2016 11:05
T-ga! Great to see you. :-)

I don't have the answer, but from my experience sometimes it's better to start fresh and re-tweek and re-configure on the brand new, fresh-as-a-daisy system, even though it seems like it will take forever.

That said, I hope you find the answer!
Member # 780
 - posted March 17, 2016 22:18
I'm not a Windows geek, but I see absolutely no good reason to go to UEFI. It's often more trouble than it's worth. (Something I have professional experience with. [Frown] ) I suspect this has something to do with 'faster boot,' but what's the matter - your laptop can't do suspend properly? (This is a big reason why I love Apple laptops.)

If you have a computer that works exactly the way you want it to, redoing it for UEFI is an academic exercise that will leave you wanting days of your life back.

It /probably/ won't help you, but Clonezilla is a pretty nifty tool for cloning disks - both full disks, and partitions. However, it's a bit fussy about source and destination sizes, and I suspect it a GPT partition could end up being a different size than MBR. (I think Windows puts some hidden partition on your system for UEFI boot.) That said, if you're going to do crazy screwing around with your box any which way, it might be a very good precaution to clone your entire disk, MBR & all, so you have a plan B after wrecking your computer with GPT+UEFI. [Wink]
The Famous Druid
Member # 1769
 - posted March 18, 2016 01:12
What dman said about Plan B.
Any time you're messing with disk partitions, assume you'll stuff it up at least once.
Member # 1659
 - posted March 19, 2016 08:22
Tom the pros have answered now for the dummie. Get a cheap cast off laptop then do what ever with the throw-away try multi OSs what ever, but you still have your fully function-able system "no blood no fowl."
Tom- geeking around
Member # 2876
 - posted March 19, 2016 10:38
Thanks for all your input guys!

@dman: I was curious about uefi because most people report faster boot times - something I can never get enough of.

I went with a fresh install and got myself a bigger and faster SSD while I was at it [Wink]
Now I have the mSata SSD minicard that used to store OS AND a 500gig SSD where the HDD used to be.
And while I had the laptop open, I applied new (and better) thermal paste to the CPU... That paid off big time: temps are about 15°C less under load now. OEMs use pretty bad thermal paste, I guess...

Boot time with the new SSD under UEFI is FAST. But probably also because it's a fresh and naked install so far...

I'm amazed at how easy that was (so far) - Win 10 grabs all the drivers from I-don't-know-where. With Win7 I had to manually install all that stuff (chipset, USB3, blahblah)...

BTW - big question: do I need to install a special driver when I use an SSD? Something like Intel RST drivers or the like?
Now I just need my MS-Office and Adobe stuff back, seriously consider if I need iTunes (I LOATHE itunes) again - and probably be back to where I started from...

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