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This morning I was trying to upgrade Windows 7 to Windows 8 and ran into a problem:

Your firmware doesn't support Secure Boot.

What is Secure Boot, and what can I do in this situation if my firmware doesn't support it?

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migrated from Oct 26 '12 at 15:51

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Why is it tagged linux?! – Anirudh Ramanathan Oct 26 '12 at 15:37
isn't that the fix Windows put in to allow other operating systems like Linux to duel boot with Windows 8? – nathan hayfield Oct 26 '12 at 15:38
@Cthulhu & Adel Qodmani It was tagged linux because. I have read in an article, regarding linux and secure boot, that made me confused. – Anvesh Vejandla Oct 26 '12 at 15:40
@AnveshVejandla Do you actually have linux installed? – Mark Johnson Oct 26 '12 at 15:43
@AnveshVejandla You should only use tags that are relevant to your actual question, not based on random tangential connections in your mind. – millimoose Oct 26 '12 at 15:49
up vote 8 down vote accepted

What is “Secure Boot” in Windows?

I think (some or all of) the following are true

  • UEFI replaces traditional BIOS as the PC firmware that starts the boot process.
  • UEFI has a feature called "Secure Boot"
  • You can disable EUFI secure-boot on some computers but not all.
  • Windows 8 for ARM (Windows RT) will not install on hardware that does not support UEFI or which allows Secure Boot to be disabled.
  • Windows 8 for x86 can be installed on non-UEFI hardware.
  • UEFI with secure boot enabled only boots the operating system (OS) loaders that are signed using a key certified by a certifying authority (CA) known to the UEFI
  • PC builders include Microsoft as a CA in UEFI but not Linux distributors
  • Some PC builders allow you to add your own keys/CAs to UEFI
  • One or two Linux vendors have decided to pay Microsoft to sign their Linux distributions
  • Some Linux distributors publish workarounds (how to disable UEFI's secure boot? or how to make UEFI recognise the distributors signature on Linux?)

Some people suspect that, at the very least, Microsoft are happy to use security as a justification to force on hardware makers a change that as a major side effect makes it hard or impossible to install a non-Microsoft operating system on that hardware.

P.S. I am pretty uncertain about many of the above points and welcome corrections, directly or in comments.

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OEMs are required to allowed Secured Boot to be disabled except in the case of Windows RT where the user isn't able to load any other operating system anyways. – Ramhound Oct 26 '12 at 16:35
I removed the bit about Windows 8 requiring UEFI hardware. That's not true. I have installed Windows 8 on several older computers that do not have UEFI. – William Jackson Oct 26 '12 at 16:40

Secure boot basically is a UEFI (BIOS) lock which has been implemented on some new Windows 8 machines that locks out installation of Linux.

Oh darn, as for you question if you don't have secure boot enabled in your UEFI bios do nothing, if you have it available to enable / disable it is up to you, I think it gives you extra security, but make sure you can disable it once enabled.

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That means we can't have a dual boot in the firmware. Say suppose Linux and Windows ? – Anvesh Vejandla Oct 26 '12 at 15:42
@AnveshVejandla Means you can boot Linux single or dual, I guess they will find a work around, but basically you just have to be careful which new Windows 8 compatible systems and motherboards you buy. – input Oct 26 '12 at 15:44
Your post helps me. Thank you. – Anvesh Vejandla Oct 26 '12 at 15:45
-1: This post is hilariously misleading. – millimoose Oct 26 '12 at 15:51
@AnveshVejandla - This is false. You just have to disable Secured Boot and/or use a Linux Distro that supports the UEFI Secure Boot being turned on ( many do ). – Ramhound Oct 26 '12 at 16:36

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