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Author Topic: GT72S 6QF - Installing Windows 7 or 10 and Backup Restore Tools  (Read 1961 times)

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kingkennycTopic starter

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Hi All, 

I purchased a GT72S 6QF (DOMINATOR PRO DRAGON 4K)-093UK back in July. Great pieces of kit :).  Hit a small issue. Was thinking of trying to run Windows 7 X64 (to test and overcome a memory limitation issue for playing SKYRIM Legendary that is restricted on Windows 10) and maybe a clean install on Windows 10 Build 1607. Again for testing and bench-marking. 

I have found that although I can installed Symantec System Recovery SSR 2013 and add the F6 Floppy driver for the IRST Raid drivers for the PCIe SSD RAID set  but when I boot from the SSR USB:

The UEFI or UEFI with CSM display when booted from the USB is way... wayyyy too small that I am unable to successfully see the option for BACK UP YOUR PC. I have managed to guess a few times and have used TAB to select the option that is below the RESTORE YOUR PC option - even if I cannot see it.  Either way it still cannot see my PCIe SSD Raid0 set. 

I have the same display issues when booting from a Windows 7 USB. Its works fine in LEGACY - but using LEGACY then removes the PCIe SSD RAID disks - so I don't have a choice but to use UEFI with CSM.

Q1. Is there anyway to change the UEFI display size properties so I can see what the hell I am doing? Maybe a modified BIOS?

Q2. Can the IRST RAID set/creation for PCIe SSD's be added to BIOS option of LEGACY? Or is that a NO because LEGACY doesn't support PCIe SSD's?

Q3. Any idea if another driver is needed to pick up the PCIe SSD Raid0 set that can be added to the SSR USB creation. Wondered if I need the driver for the TOSHIBA PCIe SSD's - although when you create the SSR USB image - it grabs the drivers from your currently running OS.  Having checked the Symantec Forums it appears their latest build supports UEFI but its not clear about PCIe SSD's. 

Q3. Has anybody out there been able to use another 3rd Party BACKUP/RECOVERY tool (using a USB) with no issues with the UEFI boot display being too small or any issues seeing PCIe SSD RAID0 setups... and are able to confirm a working create and restore 100% successful? 

I would love to hear from anybody that has any solutions for the above? Cant believe I spent all this money on a super duper laptop - only to find I cant back the damn thing up. 
Not that I have any issues. I am OK but the rest of the family that use it... and the amount of times I've had to tell them not to click this or click that! lol - but I don't wish to keep having to re-install a NEW CLEAN OS should I have any issues with the OS. I have on occasions used the BOOT - F3 to restore to factory default setups... but then you lose all your own software installs.

Kind Regards,
Kenny
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kingkennycTopic starter

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Just an Update:
Managed to CREATE and RESTORE a backup image of Window10 using - Macrium Reflect v6.2.1549.  Although the screen GUI is larger... the txt is still really very small but you just about work out what you are doing. 

I tried again with the Symantec System Recovery 2013_R2_11.1.6.55604 (Free to download - 60 Day Free Trial). The boot GUI from USB is still too small on the laptop screen and you cannot see the menu correctly. It still cannot see the PCIe SSD RAID0 set. Kinda makes me think the Symantec SSR WinPE that it creates could be the issue?...
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kingkennycTopic starter

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Update No.2
Logged this on the Symantec forums. Looks like they are aware of the GUI issue via UEFI (GOP). Although I am not sure if this is part of the WinPE it builds or if its the UEFI could be moddied with a special BIOS to define the UEFI boot screen size?  

This would be so much easier if the LEGACY option could see the PCIe SSD's and not remove the option for the Intel IRST raid disks? 

Anyway for anybody that interested here the forum link to Symantec. 
https://vox.veritas.com/t5/System-Recovery/Symantec-System-Recovery-2013-R2-11-1-6-55604-Issues-with-UEFI/m-p/818693#U818693

Here's a zip file of the screen shots for reference.
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kingkennycTopic starter

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Zip file
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david

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Hi kingkennyc,

MSI has FAQ 01971 (the preceding link will download the pdf) with instructions for installing Win 10 and Win 7 on a Skylake system. It doesn't address all of your questions but it may be a little helpful. From what it says, I don't think that you'll be able to use the Legacy BIOS manager, which is a shame because most of us running Win 7 are using the Legacy BIOS. You'll also see that Win 7 does not have native support for the NVMe protocol. Without NVMe, your SSD will run like a standard PCIe SSD---still fast but not quite as fast as it could be. To support NVMe under Win 7, all you need is an NVMe driver for Win 7 and that is the problem. Intel has one and Microsoft has some sort of workaround---but neither of these solutions is complete because they only provide partial support for NVMe. The best thing you can do is obtain a full NVMe driver for Win 7 from the manufacturer of the SSD. But I doubt that you'll find many manufacturers who will provide it.

As for changing the display size or resolution of the UEFI BIOS manager, forget about it! I doubt that you'll find any way to do that---but I'd love to be wrong. :-)

I don't have a Skylake system. My GT80 2QE is the original model with a Haswell CPU. I'm running Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit on mine exclusively (no Win 8.x and no Win 10). So I'm not using any kind of dual-boot setup. I also run Windows Virtual PC under Win 7. My VM (virtual machine) has a full Win XP installation for old software support. For example, I run Adobe PageMaker 7.0 under Win XP. In my case I'm using my "old faithful" backup program for all of this. I've used it for many years---Norton Ghost 15.0. It supports encryption, does excellent backup (including full OS system backups) and can also create a clone of a partition. I've never had any trouble with Norton Ghost. But it does not support Win 8.x or Win 10.

If I needed to create backups and clones for Win 10, I would probably try Symantec System Recovery (SSR 2013 R2) the same as you have. My reason is "compatibility"---it can read Norton Ghost backup files. Hopefully, Symantec will get the problem with SSR 2013 sorted out quickly. If you can't wait, an alternative might be EaseUS Todo Backup. I've heard it has similar features but I do not have any experience with it.

If your primary concern is to create a kind of "factory restore" for Win 7 and Win 10 that will enable you to return either system back to its pristine newly-installed state, then I would use a clone. It is the best way to restore a system. It's only disadvantages are its size (a clone will be the same size as the partition) and it doesn't provide any kind of incremental update capability. But it's about the only way to restore an OS or software with tricky authentication---as long has the hardware hasn't changed, you rarely have to re-authenticate anything.

Once you get it all figured out, write up a procedure so others will know how to accomplish the same thing.

Kind regards, David
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GT80 2QE Titan SLI-001 • i7-4720HQ • 32 GB DRAM • 2 x GTX 980M in SLI • 16 GB VRAM (8 GB/GPU) • 2 x 512 GB Micron M600 M.2 SSDs in mirrored Recovery array • 2 x 128 Toshiba M.2 SSDs in mirrored RAID-1 • 2 TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD • MiniPro RAID V2 external case w/ 2 x 2 TB Seagate ST2000LM003 HD in RAID-1 for local backup • 40" Philips 4K UHD BDM4065UC monitor • Logitech G910 Orion Spectrum RGB external keyboard • Logitech G903 Lightspeed wireless mouse w/ Powerplay charging mousepad • Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit • Adobe Master Collection CS6

kingkennycTopic starter

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Hi All,

This is MY procedure for installing Windows 10 and/or Windows 7 on my MSI LAPTOP GT72S 6QF (DOMINATOR PRO DRAGON 4K)-093UK. I recommend the following software to create the OS backup images but there are plenty of alternatives out there. I use Rufus to create a bootable USB. This setup works for me and enables me to switch to either OS build with 5-10 minutes.

Macrium Reflect v6.2.1549:
Works out the box. No issues found at present.

Symantec System Recovery 2013_R2_11.1.6.55604:
Seems to have an issue with adding drivers for certain hardware. Although I think I have found a solution. PM me if needed any help with this.

If you dont have/need a backup image solution then just refer to my Windows 7/10 install notes.

IMPORTANT NOTE:
I would recommend that you update your FIRMWARE for BIOS, VGA and THUNDERBOLT to the latest version that MSI have for your hardware where appicable. If you are NOT sure. Leave it on the current version. You can always update later.

A few things may vary like your MSI hardware but you should know what drivers are needed during the Windows Installs. DONT FORGET TO GET THE INTEL F6 DRIVER READY IF NEEDED. I needed the F6 INTEL RAID DRIVER for my Intel RAID setup.

UEFI or LEGACY BIOS:
I cannot get around this. I wanted to use LEGACY BIOS mode for my Windows installs but using LEGACY removes the Intel RAID option from the BIOS menu and refuses to see my TOSHIBA NVMe PCIe SSD devices in INTEL RAID0 set. So I dont have a choice but to use UEFI with CSM. Also set SECURE BOOT to DISABLED. It can be re-enabled if needed after the OS installs. I've left mine DISABLED.

Due to the limitations of UEFI (GOP) you may find that some of the USB boot image GUI's or other screens show up really small on this laptop screen i.e. Install of Windows, any System Imaging software. This only occurs during the USB boot process. After any install of windows it will actually look OK.

Some of you may have older hardware so UEFI may not be an issue. So the partition layout may differ and you can do your own thing for installing Windows.

INSTALL WINDOWS 10:
===================

I found installing Windows 10 first was a better option as it defines the needed partitions for UEFI. If you are using a LEGACY BIOS this will NOT apply.
Disconnect Network cable. Install WINDOWS 10. This allows the OS to create the required UEFI partions. You should end up with:
 
 DISK 0  PRIMARY          981 GB (MY STANDARD 1TB MSI HDD)
 DISK 1 (1)  RECOVERY  450 MB
 DISK 1 (2)  SYSTEM/BOOT   100 MB
 DISK 1 (3)  MBR (RESERVED)  > This disappears and is not shown as a partition after an install of Windows
 DISK 1 (4)  PRIMARY          450GB > This is where you installed WINDOWS 10
 
INSTALL MSI DRIVERS FOR WINDOWS 10:
===================================

I found THIS was a better INSTALL ORDER as using CHIPSET drivers first refreshes the screen and you lose the install window and you are unable to click FINISH.
REBOOT after each install if it asks you.

VGA
INTEL CHIPSET
INTEL MANAGEMENT
INTEL IRST RAID
TOUCHPAD SYNAPTICS
CARD READER
AUDIO
NETWORK WLAN
EC RADIO
THUNDERBOLT
*BLUETOOTH INTEL
*BLUETOOTH KILLER
(* not sure if BOTH are needed but I installed both INTEL and KILLER BT)

INSTALL MSI UTILITES FOR WINDOWS 10:
====================================

Do NOT REBOOT after each install even if it tells you too. Choose later.

AUDIO (They have included the Audio as a UTILITY but it appears to be the same as the above AUDIO driver only - so I skipped this.)
HELPDESK
MSI TRUE COLOUR
MSI BATTERY CALIBRATION
MSI SIZING OPTIONS
DRAGON GAMING CTR
STEEL SERIES ENGINE
SYSTEM CONTROL MANAGER - SCM
MSI AFTERBURN

INSTALL WINDOWS 10 UPDATES AND YOUR OWN SOFTWARE REQUIREMENTS:
==============================================================

Now attach the Network cable. Install any Windows updates as well as your own software i.e. MS Office. This is just my personal preference but I like to keep my backup/restore images to a nice size. So after a few very basic installs I create a BACKUP IMAGE. So in theory you should have done something like this:

Installed Windows.
Installed MSI DRIVERS.
Installed MSI UTILITIES.
Got all WINDOWS UPDATES.
Installed your basic needs like OFFICE. STEAM. Other.

Change CONTROL PANEL > SYSTEM & SECURITY > SYSTEM > SYSTEM PROTECTION setting to disable for C: drive and remove current images.
Run WINDOWS ADMINISTRATIVE TOOLS > DISK CLEAN UP for both CLEAN UP SYSTEM FILES and the default one that it runs at the start.
Reboot your machine.

Re-enable SYSTEM PROTECTION > CONFIGURE > TURN ON for the C: drive I Set mine to 20GB. Create a NEW RECOVERY POINT. Call it something like: NEW_BUILD_CLEAN_OCT_2016
Reboot your machine.

Using your preferred SYSTEM IMAGE BACKUP/RECOVERY software. Create a NEW IMAGE via USB or DVD or your other HDD if you have one. Skip this if you dont use any Image Backup/Recovery Software.

THATS WINDOWS 10 INSTALLED AND YOU NOW HAVE A CLEAN WORKING IMAGE TO RESTORE BACK TO IF NEEDED!


INSTALLING WINDOWS 7:
=====================

NOTE: During the Windows 7 setup. You may find some of the USB devices may not work (My external Mouse). It makes sence to have the MSI DRIVERS and UTILITIES pre-extracted on another drive or a USB stick in readiness. You can still use the Synaptics Touchpad until you can install the MSI USB 3.0 drivers and reboot.

Repeat the above install procedure using WINDOW 7 ISO.  
During the "WHERE DO YOU WANT TO INSTALL WINDOWS". The UEFI partions will already be there. You only need to select the:

DISK 1 (4)  PRIMARY  450GB > This is where you installed WINDOWS 7

and hit FORMAT. It wont change anything else as the UEFI partition already exist! (UEFI process can be ignored for people running LEGACY BIOS). Install Windows 7 to this location.


INSTALL MSI DRIVERS for WINDOWS 7:
===================================

Repeat the ABOVE install process for the MSI WINDOWS 7 drivers... BUT pay attention to the following:

*BLUETOOTH INTEL (BT Server)
*BLUETOOTH KILLER (Virtual BT Support with Audio) FAILS to install and you get btath_flt.sys BSOD
(*ONLY Install ONE of the BLUETOOTH Drivers - NOT BOTH otherwise it will BSOD)

I chose to install BT KILLER only. I am unable to confirm if its related to the chipset or the EC radio that is only available via Windows 10.

INSTALL MSI UTILITES for WINDOWS 7:
===================================

Repeat the ABOVE install process for the MSI UTILITY drivers... BUT pay attention to the following:

SteelSeries v3.8.1. Installs OK. Reports there is an update v3.91. The Update hangs trying to find a Keyboard Driver. After further testing it appears it just takes 5-10 mins to find what it needs. Or just skip the v3.8.1 install and find the v3.9.0 and install that.

Odd but I couldnt install MS Office. I got a message msg about Microsoft Bootstrapper hanging. Restarted laptop. Closed down all MSI software. Tried the MS Office install again and all was 100% OK. Could have been a one off error


OTHER NOTES:
============

I found creating a nVidia CUSTOM resolution for 1920 x 1080 appeared to provide me a better visual solution than using the MSI scaling software. The scaling software looks OK for icons and images... but the text can still be really small on some windows.

I recommend google'ling GWX Control Panel v1.7.4.1 for Windows 7. This supposidly stops all the windows 10 crap that you get on Windows 7. Although I am not sure you get it any more now that the offer for a free upgrade has expired... but I'll be using it anyway.

Window 7 Updates to Avoid/Hide:
=======================
These updates are from abbodi1406's list at:
http://forums.mydigitallife.info/threads/63145-Safe-way-to-get-rid-of-updating-to-Windows-10?p=1101967&viewfull=1#post1101967

KB971033
For those that may NOT need it. Update for Windows7 for x64 based Systems windows Activation Technologies.

KB3021917
Performs diagnostics to determine whether performance issues may be encountered Windows 10 is installed.

KB2990214
Update that enables you to upgrade from Windows 7 to a later version of Windows

KB3068708
KB3080149
Adds the Diagnostics Tracking Service (Unified Telemetry Client), which collects data about functional issues in Windows.

KB2952664
KB3150513
Performs and collect compatibility appraiser logs in order to ease the upgrade experience to Windows 10

KB3035583
Installs Get Windows 10 app

KB3075249
Update that adds telemetry points to the User Account Control (UAC) to collect information on elevations from low-level requests

KB3123862
Adds capabilities to some computers that lets users easily learn about Windows 10 or start the upgrade to Windows 10.


Hope that helps everybody. PM me if you need any help and I'll see what I can do. Again...depending on your hardware/setup the results may differ. Good Luck.

Kind Regards,
Kenny
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kingkennycTopic starter

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Oh and for WINDOW 10 users. You may be interested in google'ling these. I only use one of them myself... but the rest kinda look OK.

Abelssoft AntiBrowserSpy Pro
DWS Destroy Windows 10 Spying
DWT Disable Windows 10 Tracking
W10Privacy
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admstudios7

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thanks for the cheddar 
@kingkennyc
 good intel to save some time during the installation of some few software
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matthijs.raupp

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cd er in doen
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