how to fix (Windows Could Not Be Installed to This Disk) Error.
Although reinstalling Windows is rarely required these days, if you ever do, there are several speed bumps along the way to installing Windows. One such error is the message “Windows could not be installed on this drive”, but we have several possible fixes to help you resolve this specific issue.
In addition, you may see an additional line in the error message, namely “The selected disk has a GPT partition style” or “The selected disk has an MBR partition table. On EFI systems, Windows can only be installed on GPT disks. ” Below we will explain what these messages mean.
UEFI, BIOS, MBT and GPT Conflicts
This error occurs due to a conflict between the type of firmware used on your computer and the partition table standard in which the hard drive in question was formatted.
Older computers use BIOS (Basic Input / Output System) firmware that is compatible with the MBR (Master Boot Record) standard to manage the partition tables.
Newer computers use the UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) type of firmware, which can work with both MBR disks and GPT (GUID Partition Table) disks. However, for MBR disks used with UEFI, the partition size must be less than 2TB. Whenever possible, use GPT disks with UEFI-type computers.
For a more complete explanation of MBT and GPT formatting, check out MBR and GPT: Which is the Best Format for an SSD Drive? However, now that you know this common cause of the error, let’s look at the available solutions to the problem.
Switch Between UEFi and Legacy BIOS Modes
Although most modern computers use the UEFI type of firmware, many still offer Legacy BIOS or Legacy Boot mode to address compatibility issues.
In fact, your problem may be related to enabling the wrong mode. If your disk is formatted using the more recent GPT standard and you boot in legacy boot mode, Windows will not work with that disk. Then you will receive the message “The selected disk has a GPT partition style.” This means that you either need to convert the disk to MBR format or change the boot settings in BIOS to UEFI.
If you get a different message “The selected disk has an MBR partition table”, you need to do the opposite. This means that you need to either convert the disk to GPT format or boot the BIOS in legacy mode.
The legacy boot modes are not meant to be a permanent solution, so if you need to use them to access the disk, your best bet is to back up your data to the MBR partition you want to install Windows on and then convert it to GPT.
How you enable or disable legacy boot modes depends on your particular computer. You need to access the firmware menu at boot time, which is usually done by pressing a specific key. Find this information on your motherboard or in your computer manual.
Once in the UEFI menu, find the option to enable legacy BIOS / Boot mode and change it to the options you want. Some computers even have a third mode that supports UEFI and Legacy. So if you see this, choose this option.
Reformatting a Drive With Another Partition Style
Converting a GPT disk to MBR or vice versa will delete all data and partitions from that disk. However, if you want to start your computer in UEFI mode, you will need a system drive that uses GPT. We recommend everyone to use UEFI if possible, as it is much more secure and has several advantages over MBR.
However, if you get this error, it is likely that your computer only supports an outdated BIOS version and your disk is formatted with GPT. In this case, you can fix the problem by converting the disk to MBR. Let’s see how to convert a disk from GPT to MBR.
Again, this is only recommended for non-UEFI systems. On UEFI systems, you must use the GPT format for your Windows drive.
Getting a Fresh Start During Windows Installation
Windows 10 Setup comes with a robust disk management application. During installation, you will be prompted to remove all partitions on the disk and format it. Windows will format the drive using the correct settings as needed for operation.
If you have data on the disk that hasn’t been backed up elsewhere, that’s a bad idea. you if are not worried about the data on the current drive, then this is by far the easiest way to fix the problem while installing Windows.
If you don’t know how to reinstall Windows, just read our in-depth guide that covers three methods for installing Windows. During the Windows installation process, when you get to the question “Where do you want to install Windows?” dialogue, just follow the instructions below.
- Select each section in turn, then click Delete until there are no sections left.
- Click Next and Windows will format the white space correctly and create the appropriate partitions.
The installation can then proceed as usual.
Using Third-Party Software To Change Partition Style Without Formatting
There are third-party applications that offer the ability to convert your section style without losing data. This is possible, although in reality such applications erase and replace every bit of data on the disk when reformatting the media.
However, if the process is interrupted for any reason, you will most likely end up with a disk that will still need to be reformatted. It is always recommended to back up your disk (or at least important data) before performing such a conversion.
In addition, you will need to perform this conversion when starting the operating system from a disk other than the one you want to convert, for obvious reasons. This means booting from a live boot disk or using an external disk enclosure with another computer to get the job done.
Feel free to check out our list of the best free hard drive formatting and partitioning utilities for Windows. Some of these tools will allow you to convert the format of a hard disk partition without completely reformatting.
Getting Windows Installed
In general, if you get this error message, it will complicate things a bit. This is not the easiest mistake to make, so take your time and leave comments if you have questions. Usually we are good at getting back to people.
Hope you can follow this guide and install Windows on your drive without any problems. Remember to back up your data before doing anything to be safe.
how to fix (Windows Could Not Be Installed to This Disk) Error
how to fix (Windows Could Not Be Installed to This Disk) Error
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