[Fixed] The Selected Disk Is of the GPT Partition Style in Windows 10/8/7

Daisy updated on Jan 16, 2020 to Partition Master | How-to Articles

PAGE CONTENT:
Error 'Windows cannot be installed to this disk GPT'
Cause of 'The selected disk is of the GPT partition style'
What Is GPT Partition Style
What's the Relation Between GPT and Legacy BIOS
2 Fixes for 'The selected disk is of the GPT partition style'
Convert GPT to MBR
Boot to UEFI Mode

Error: 'Windows cannot be installed to this disk. The selected disk is of the GPT partition style.'

"Windows cannot be installed to this disk GPT" indicates the error message ''Windows cannot be installed to this disk. The selected disk is of the GPT partition style." This is one of the common errors that might occur during Windows installation. When you try to install Windows 10/8/7 on your computer, be it a desktop or Dell/HP laptop, Windows Setup might report the error "Windows cannot be installed to this disk. The selected disk is of the GPT partition style." If that happens, you cannot continue installing Windows until to fix it.

Windows Cannot be installed on this disk. The selected disk is of the GPT partition style.

Cause of 'The selected disk is of the GPT partition style'

If you see the prompt saying "Windows Cannot be installed to this disk. The selected disk is of the GPT partition style", that's because your computer is booted in legacy BIOS, but the selected hard drive has a GPT partition style, which is not configured for BIOS mode. For your information, the hard drive should be configured as MBR for legacy BIOS. To fully understand the cause of "This selected disk is of the GPT partition style", there are some concepts you need to figure out.

What Is GPT Partition Style

Both GPT (GUID Partition Table) and MBR (Master Boot Record) are the partition styles on Windows-based computers. The partition style decides the layout of the hard drive and tells Windows how to access the data on the disk.

MBR partition style is a more traditional one that only works with a maximum disk size of 2TiB. And you can only create at most four primary partitions on an MBR disk.

GPT partition style is a newer standard for disk partitioning which defines partition structure by GUID (Globally Unique Identifiers). GPT is part of the UEFI standard, which means a UEFI-based system should be installed on a GPT disk. GPT partition style allows you to create theoretically unlimited partitions on the disk and enables you to fully use disks that are larger than 2TiB(approximately 2.2TB). Besides, GPT disks have integrated cyclic redundancy check (CRC32) checksum that is used to verify the integrity of the GPT header, which means it's much safer than MBR disks. Thus, compared with the MBR partitioning scheme, GPT is more flexible and has better compatibility with modern hardware. 

You can refer to the article about GPT vs MBR for a detailed introduction of the GPT partition style.

What's the Relation Between GPT and Legacy BIOS

Your computer will boot to one of the two modes: UEFI or BIOS. If your computer is UEFI-based, you will need to install Windows on a GPT disk. Similarly, if your computer is BIOS-based, you will need to install Windows on an MBR disk. Therefore, GPT is incompatible with legacy BIOS and that's why you receive the error message "Windows Cannot be installed to this disk. The selected disk is of the GPT partition style."

How to Fix 'Windows Cannot be installed to this disk. The selected disk is of the GPT partition style.'

Based on the cause of the "Windows cannot be installed to this disk" error, you can easily conclude that if you want to continue installing Windows, you will need to convert GPT to MBR to fit the BIOS mode or boot the PC to UEFI mode to fit the GPT disk.

Method 1. Convert GPT to MBR

As mentioned, the error message indicates that Windows is booted in legacy BIOS mode that requires the system disk to be MBR. The direct solution to "The selected disk is of the GPT partition style" is to change the GPT disk to MBR. And there are two options for you:

Option 1. Convert GPT to MBR with Reliable Partition Tool

To convert MBR to GPT easily, you can apply the professional partition tool - EaseUS Partition Master. With this software, you are able to create a WinPE bootable media packaged with EaseUS Partition Master on a USB, CD, or DVD. Then you can boot the computer from the device and convert the GPT disk to MBR disk with simple clicks using the tool. (You need another working computer to create the WinPE bootable USB/CD/DVD.)

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 Windows 10 is supported

Step 1. Prepare a disc or drive. To create a bootable disk of EaseUS Partition Master, you should prepare a storage media, like a USB drive, flash drive, or a CD/DVD disc. Correctly connect the drive to your computer. Then, launch EaseUS Partition Master, go to the "WinPE Creator" feature on the top. Click on it.

create easeus partition master bootable disk

Step 2. Create EaseUS Partition Master bootable drive. You can choose the USB or CD/DVD when the drive is available. However, if you do not have a storage device at hand, you can also save the ISO file to a local drive, and later burn it to a storage media. Once made the option, click "Proceed".

create easeus partition master bootable disk

You have created an EaseUS Partition Master WinPE bootable disk now. You can manage your hard disks and partitions through the bootable drive when the computer does not start properly, or the system is not installed.

If you have RAID drives, load the RAID driver first by clicking "Add Driver" from the menu bar, which can help you add the driver of your device under WinPE environment, as some specific device cannot be recognized under WinPE environment without drivers installed, such as RAID or some specific hard disk.

Step 3. Connect the WinPE bootable disk to the computer. Restart your computer and press F2/Del at the same time to enter BIOS. Set to boot the PC from "Removable Devices" (bootable USB disk) or "CD-ROM Drive" (bootable CD/DVD) beyond Hard Drive. Press "F10" to save and exit.

Step 4. Launch EaseUS Partition Master. Right-click the GPT disk that you want to convert and select "Convert to MBR". Then, you will add a pending operation.

convert GPT to MBR

Step 5. Click the "Execute Operation" button at the top-left corner. Next, click "Apply" and begin to convert GPT disk to MBR. All data is safe with EaseUS partition manager software. 

convert GPT to MBR

Option 2. Convert GPT to MBR with Windows Installation DVD or USB

Since you are attempting to install Windows on the disk, you must have a Windows installation DVD or USB, with which you can also convert GPT to MBR.

Step 1. Turn off the PC and put in the Windows installation DVD or USB.

Step 2. Boot the PC from the DVD or USB.

Step 3. In Windows Setup, press "Shift + F10" to start Command Prompt.

Step 4. Enter the following command in order:

  • diskpart
  • list disk
  • select disk 1 (choose the disk you want to install Windows on)
  • clean
  • convert mbr
  • exit

Step 5. Close Command Prompt.

Step 6. Continue the Windows installation.

Method 2. Boot to UEFI Mode

This solution is not universally applicable. Why? That's because not all computers have the firmware with both UEFI and BIOS-compatible. Although most of the desktops and laptops running Windows 10 have UEFI-based motherboard with legacy BIOS-compatibility mode, there are some expectations. Older computers running Windows 7 only support legacy BIOS mode and the latest Surface Pro allows only UEFI mode.

When you receive "Windows Cannot be installed to this disk. The selected disk is of the GPT partition style", it suggests that your computer is currently booted in legacy BIOS. To boot to UEFI, you need to check whether the firmware supports UEFI in BIOS and then change to it if the mode is available.

Step 1. Completely shut down your computer.

Step 2. Power on the system. Once you see the logo appears, press the BIOS key, be it Esc, Delete, F1, F2, F10, F11, or F12, to enter BIOS. (Generally, the computer screen will show you what the BIOS key is.)

Step 3. Use the arrow key to select and enter the "Boot" tab.

Step 4. Use the down arrow to select UEFI.

Step 5. Save the changes and exit BIOS.

Step 6. Continue Windows installation.

Boot to legacy BIOS or UEFI

If there is no UEFI mode available, it means that your computer only allows for BIOS mode. In such a situation, you can only change the hard drive from GPT to MBR to fix the "Windows cannot be installed to this disk" error.

Related Questions

There are other issues related to the GPT partition style that many users are concerned about:

"How do I get rid of GPT partition style?"

You cannot 'get rid of' a GPT partition style. A partition style is necessary for Windows to access the data on the device. But you can change the GPT partition style to MBR by conversion. 

"How do I create a GPT partition?"

The partition style of the disk is decided when you first initialize it. When you initialize a disk, you need to choose GPT or MBR as the partitioning method. If you need to, you can change an MBR disk to GPT disk or vice versa.

"Can Windows 10 be installed on GPT?"

As long as your computer is UEFI-based, you can install Windows 10 on a GPT disk. In addition to Windows 10, earlier versions like Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 can also be installed on a GPT disk.

Related Error: "Windows cannot be installed to this disk. The selected disk has an MBR partition table."

Similar to "Windows cannot be installed to this disk GPT", if your computer is booted in UEFI mode but the hard drive is MBR, which is not configured for UEFI, you will receive the error message "Windows cannot be installed to this disk. The selected disk has an MBR partition table. On EFI systems, Windows can only be installed to GPT disks."

With the knowledge introduced above, you know that you can change the boot mode to convert the disk to solve the problem. However, since it's clear that the computer firmware is UEFI-based, you can only convert MBR to GPT to cope with the issue since legacy BIOS is not supported by the computer.

The Bottom Line

A PC uses either of the boot methods: UEFI-GPT or BIOS-MBR. Whether installing using the MBR or GPT depends on your computer firmware. If you get a BIOS-based computer, you can only install Windows on an MBR disk, If you get a UEFI-based PC, choose GPT instead, while if your computer firmware supports both UEFI and BIOS, choose GPT or MBR according to your needs. 

With that in mind, you will be clear about how to fix "Windows Cannot be installed to this disk. The selected disk is of the GPT partition style."

 
 

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