Disable UEFI on XPS 8500 Windows 8 Pro machine

Dell was quoted a year ago by Ed Bott (CNet article) as saying that users would be able to disable UEFI in the BIOS on all Dell Win 8 machines.

So, am I correct in my understanding that I can immediately disable UEFI tomorrow when my XPS 8500 arrives? Can I then simply use Windows 8 in legacy mode or will it be necessary for me to reinstall Windows 8 in legacy mode? If the latter is required, is there going to be a problem with getting the Reinstallation disk sent to me?

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3 Replies

Re: Disable UEFI on XPS 8500 Windows 8 Pro machine

Hi Mele20,

All present Dell systems are shipped with UEFI BIOS.  There is an option to disable UEFI in the BIOS screen.  In the BIOS screen under ‘BOOT’ tab, click on ‘Boot mode’ to disable UEFI and use the system in Legacy mode. However I would like to know the reason you want to disable it.

UEFI makes Windows 8 more secure. This feature will keep your PC and data safe by allowing only the software with recognized, valid security certificates to run, so it prevents rootkits or other malware that might attempt to load at boot from doing so.

Thanks and Regards,
DELL-Sujatha K
Dell Social Media and Community Professional
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Re: Disable UEFI on XPS 8500 Windows 8 Pro machine

Thank you for your quick response.

I plan to dual boot and as far as I know Linux does not yet have a key from Microsoft allowing UEFI to be used when booting Linux.  Plus, I might dual boot XP Pro at first and Linux later.

I just read an article stating that UEFI has already been breached as far as security goes. The article was about how UEFI root kits have been developed. None in the wild yet but it is just a matter of time as it is quite easy to do.

I plan to use a classic HIPS to further protect my computer.  I can't use Diamond CS Process Guard (the original HIPS from 2003) though on Win 8 but I have a list of others to try. (Nothing could get past Process Guard all the years I've had XP Pro). I spend a lot of time in computer Security forums since 2001 and have a good understanding of how to keep my computer safe.  I agree though that for the average home user that UEFI is still a good idea (even if root kits have now been developed).

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Re: Disable UEFI on XPS 8500 Windows 8 Pro machine

I ordered XPS 8500 with 256 SSD and 3TB hard drive in January. The system was setup with UEFI secure boot. I added my own 1.5TB Seagate HD and the system worked fine for 40 days. Then it started having a strange problem. The system showed "Preparing Automatic Repair" after a Windows Update. 

I've spent almost two weeks with Dell Tech Support and tried all kinds of BIOS settings ... ~7 times reinstalling Windows 8 OS. I was able to install Windows 8 OS and then plugin my 1.5TB. It will work until the next Windows Update KB2267602 which is the update for ""Windows Defender Definition". Even the motherboard was replaced 2 days ago.

Few bizarre things

1) KB2267602 update appears on the next day after installing the OS. So far I have received it almost every day with different version numbers.

2) If I unplug the 1.5TB drive and restart the machine it will work. Then I can plug it again.

3) After the KB2267602 update is applied and if I do a "Cold Reboot" (cut off the power supply) it will work. In this case no need to unplug the 1.5TB.

4) Setting up secure boot is a tricky process. Just enabling it will not work.

Dell couldn't figure out what's causing the problem. They claim that system will work without 1.5TB and asked me to get help from Microsoft. 


Dell's recommendations to resolve the issue...

1) Buy McAfee / Norton antivirus and block Defender update

2) Buy a powerful power supply

3) Use legacy boot

4) Use an external USB based HD instead of internal one. 


BTW, one of the tech support guy mentioned that XPS 8500 was not designed for Windows 8. Dell made some changes to make the system work with Windows 8.


I could have bought a system for 1/3 of the price I paid for this.

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