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Hello everyone, I have a question in which I hope I'm not alone. I have Windows 8 media and have created a single install.wim containing both 32bit and 64bit installations. My million dollar question to all of my fellow Neowinians is that if it is possible to create USB Media capable of working with BOTH MBR/Legacy/BIOS based machines and more modern UEFI-based systems similar to what the DVD has going? I know the DVD's I burned from Microsoft DreamSpark show on my Sabertooth Z77 with both Legacy and EFI boot options in the boot menu; can it be possible to have this on a USB drive?

 

As of now, I have 2 USB drives which are 32GB. One is a USB 3.0 Sandisk Extreme and the other is a SiliconPower USB 2.0 drive which are used for EFI and Legacy BIOS systems respectively. Any help would be appreciated.

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On my system, when I hit the boot menu when I want to boot from the USB key, it gives me two options:

 

USB Pen Drive

USB Pen Drive UEFI

 

Selecting the latter boots the install into UEFI mode and this is how you install Windows 8 in UEFI mode.

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What can I do to format my drive as such and set it up that way? FAT32 format and adding the bootsect.exe bootcode doesnt work simultaneously. You either gotta go NTFS (not an option sadly with EFI) or stick to FAT32 but not be able to use the same drive with Legacy PCs without another separate drive. The Windows 7 USB tool doesn't set it up for EFI.

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What can I do to format my drive as such and set it up that way? FAT32 format and adding the bootsect.exe bootcode doesnt work simultaneously. You either gotta go NTFS (not an option sadly with EFI) or stick to FAT32 but not be able to use the same drive with Legacy PCs without another separate drive. The Windows 7 USB tool doesn't set it up for EFI.

A manual cloning of the ISO will do what you want - however, it works best from the command line.  Even better, it works for (and within) Windows 7 as well.

 

It starts with an elevated (Administrative privileges) command prompt in Windows 7/Server 2008 or later (yes - Windows 8.1 Preview will also work).  Starting with an empty thumbdrive of the right size (or a thumbdrive you want to format for the purpose) use DiskPart (a command-line disk partitioning tool that goes back to before XP) to make sure that the drive is completely empty of partitions, then create a single partition and format it in FAT32 - after the formatting, you can also tell DiskPart to assign a drive letter).  While you can do this graphically (from Explorer or even Computer Manager's Disk Management), one monstrous advantage of DiskPart is that you can clean out non-FAT and non-NTFS partitions (such as EFI or other foreign-FS, such as Apple or Linux) partitions - which have been known to drive Disk Management nuts.  Take your source ISO file and mount it using your virtual-drive utility of choice (including those built into Windows 8/Server 2012 and later), then type (without the quotes) "xcopy32 Y:\*.* /s /e /v /f /h W:" where Y: is your source mounted ISO and W: is your target.  It works where the Microsoft Windows ISO tool won't (modified disc images, such as AIO images can't be used with the Microsoft graphical utility - it can also be used with hard drive partitions as targets - another option that Microsoft's graphical utility doesn't support).  What the various command-line switches tell XCOPY32 to do is to transfer the entire contents of the drive - in the same structure order - to the target, including hidden files (/h), system files (/s) and even empty folders/directories OR subfolders and subdirectories (/e) - items that graphical-based utilities skip by default.  Because it uses the same structure as the source, any computer that would recognize the source as it was will also recognize any one-hundred-percent clone of that source - and that is exactly what you have.

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