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I wiped my Windows 8 thinking I could install Win7 x86 but I can't because the disk is GPT. I need to convert to MBR. Is there a tool to do that? Maybe I wrong: but it seems like GParted can only do the opposite?


I ended up using Rod Smith's GParted solution. But I think either solution will work.

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2 Answers

up vote 13 down vote accepted

Since you mentioned GParted, try this:

  1. Launch GParted on the disk.
  2. If any partitions are mounted (as indicated by a lock or key icon), unmount them.
  3. Select Device->Create Partition Table.
  4. Click Apply.

The disk should now use MBR. You can also create partitions within GParted, if you like; however, the Windows installer can do this automatically if you prefer.

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Thanks that works. –  CppLearner Sep 8 '13 at 4:28
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If you have a Windows 7 Installation disk, you can enter Repair mode and use diskpart to accomplish this.

From Windows 7 DVD, click Repair your computer when you see this screen:

enter image description here

Then select Command Prompt in the Repair window:

enter image description here

Once you've entered the command prompt, type diskpart to enter the utility.

  1. Type select disk # replacing "#" with the drive number of the one you wish to format. To see a list of disks, type list disk.
  2. Type clean. This deletes all volumes from the drive.
  3. Type convert mbr to convert the disk to mbr.

Note: You can repeat this process and in step 3 replace with the command convert gpt to go back to GPT.

Sources: Change a GUID Partition Table Disk into a Master Boot Record Disk, Change a Master Boot Record Disk into a GUID Partition Table Disk

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Thanks. Exciting news, but it said I need to use Windows 8 disc to repair; as soon as I click repair it said incompatible OS. –  CppLearner Sep 8 '13 at 2:04
If that doesn't work you could use a partitioning tool like EaseUS Partiton Manager. It has a bootable version that supports conversion to and from GPT (it also has support for doing so without data loss). –  Moses Sep 8 '13 at 2:10
I didn't try this method but it works. I believe your method will work so I will also upvote. –  CppLearner Sep 8 '13 at 4:28
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