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Will I be able to run windows 8 on my system, even though I am not using UEFI? Is there a work around if I don't want to use UEFI?

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It wouldn't make sense for 90%+ of M$'s consumer base to buy the software! – Alex Waters Sep 21 '11 at 10:45
UEFI has been in use even in Win7, Windows 8 just takes advantage of it more within the boot process to make it faster. I have a non-UEFI based laptop perfectly running the developer preview. – Sandeep Bansal Sep 21 '11 at 13:38
up vote 9 down vote accepted

Yes. Windows 8 will support BIOS without UEFI.

We will continue to support the legacy BIOS interface, but machines using the UEFI interface will have significantly richer capabilities.

The quote is from Microsoft's Building Windows 8 Developers Blog title: Reengineering the Windows boot experience. It was just posted yesterday.

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UEFI will be required for any PC conforming to the "Windows 8 logo program" I assume this is for the OEM PC – Moab Sep 21 '11 at 15:28

Actually it will support, windows 8 is being planned to work over UEFI BIOS. According to this website:

"Mike’s words have caused some confusion in Germany, where popular media outlets such as Heise reported that Windows 8 would only support UEFI, a new interface between an operating system and platform firmware, and not BIOS. This would mean that the majority of Windows customers would not be able to upgrade to Windows 8, considering that more than 99% of all users worldwide have a BIOS interface and not UEFI."

And this:

“Topics in this session include: wow a future platform would evolve with advanced features in firmware using the latest UEFI protocol and services; [and] technical details of the latest Windows* 8 platform requirements including UEFI boot and security will be discussed.”

The ‘Microsoft Windows 8 on Intel Architecture’ session “will provide a glimpse into: the upcoming release of Microsoft’s next operating system release Windows 8; [and] the work both companies are undertaking to deliver this new compute experience.”

Even AMI(American Megatrend Inc) which produces BIOS already annouced the UEFI support to Windows 8:

"American Megatrends Announces Aptio UEFI BIOS Support For Windows 8, UEFI Development PC At BUILD Conference"

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Two things, really - almost all new systems have UEFI, and windows 8 64 bit dev preview works fine on a system with a 'classic' bios - it runs really well on a 4 year old core 2 based system, and a good many test systems they use are bios based.

MS's design goals are for windows 8 to run on the same hardware windows vista and 7 does - and forcing a signed bootloader sort of goes against it.

I do see UEFI implimentations supporting additional features with respect to windows (lenovo already uses it for faster boot on their windows 7 systems).

UEFI/signed bootloaders might make sense on the arm versions, especially if MS has input on the hardware - especially if they are metro only.

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We don't know. Windows 8 hasn't been released yet.

Heck — it isn't even in beta yet.

All that people can tell you about is Windows Developer Preview, which isn't Windows 8. And what they, or at least the subset of people without EFI firmware who have installed it on their machines, can tell you about that is that it does not require EFI firmware. Microsoft's stated hardware requirements are that Windows Developer Preview, subject to various processor/RAM/disc space/graphics card minima, can be used on "the same hardware that powers Windows Vista and Windows 7".

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Actually we do, see SgtOJ's answer below. – Moab Sep 21 '11 at 15:29

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