How To: Run SpinRite on a UEFI-only machine (Part 2C of 5 - Windows as base OS)

  • SpinRite v6.1 Release #3
    The 3rd release of SpinRite v6.1 is published and may be obtained by all SpinRite v6.0 owners at the SpinRite v6.1 Pre-Release page. (SpinRite will shortly be officially updated to v6.1 so this page will be renamed.) The primary new feature, and the reason for this release, was the discovery of memory problems in some systems that were affecting SpinRite's operation. So SpinRite now incorporates a built-in test of the system's memory. For the full story, please see this page in the "Pre-Release Announcements & Feedback" forum.
  • Be sure to checkout “Tips & Tricks”
    Dear Guest Visitor → Once you register and log-in please checkout the “Tips & Tricks” page for some very handy tips!

  • BootAble – FreeDOS boot testing freeware

    To obtain direct, low-level access to a system's mass storage drives, SpinRite runs under a GRC-customized version of FreeDOS which has been modified to add compatibility with all file systems. In order to run SpinRite it must first be possible to boot FreeDOS.

    GRC's “BootAble” freeware allows anyone to easily create BIOS-bootable media in order to workout and confirm the details of getting a machine to boot FreeDOS through a BIOS. Once the means of doing that has been determined, the media created by SpinRite can be booted and run in the same way.

    The participants here, who have taken the time to share their knowledge and experience, their successes and some frustrations with booting their computers into FreeDOS, have created a valuable knowledgebase which will benefit everyone who follows.

    You may click on the image to the right to obtain your own copy of BootAble. Then use the knowledge and experience documented here to boot your computer(s) into FreeDOS. And please do not hesitate to ask questions – nowhere else can better answers be found.

    (You may permanently close this reminder with the 'X' in the upper right.)


Well-known member
Sep 18, 2020
This article is split into multiple parts:
  1. Part 2A - Setting up the Windows to Go drive, Installing VirtualBox
  2. Part 2B - Creating a SpinRite Virtual Machine, Mapping the Host drives to the SR Virtual Machine, Steps to take when moving your Windows to Go drive to a new Target Machine
  3. Part 2C - Updating the Windows to Go drive to include Mac "BootCamp" drivers (optional, and obviously only for those planning to run the Windows to Go drive against a target Mac) (this article)

Prepping the Windows to Go drive for an Intel Mac:​

You'll need another USB flash drive for this step.

This step is optional, and only if you're planning to use your Windows to Go VirtualBox drive against a Mac as a target system
  1. Intel Macs from at least 2012 on can boot a GPT formatted drive, as they are EFI / UEFI based
  2. The tricky part is getting all of the needed drivers
  3. You could just boot with the drive and then, if possible, go into Windows Update and download the Microsoft generic drivers which work on the Mac.
  4. Not all Mac capabilities will be exposed this way, and depending on the Mac, maybe some needed functionality won’t work at all.
    1. I’m speculating on this, I only have one Mac (a mid-2012 MacBook Pro) to work from
  5. Apple has Windows drivers available for Intel Macs, here’s how to put them onto your Win to Go Boot disk
    1. Make sure your MacOS is running the latest MacOS that it can (or even a newer one, if you’re using Open Core Legacy Patcher!!)
      1. You can go here:
        2. Find your model, and check the "Maximum MacOS" spec to see if you're up to date
    2. From within MacOS:
      1. Download the Windows ISO from Microsoft, or the Tiny11 ISO I referenced earlier
      2. Plug in a 64 GB USB drive. You’ll only need this temporarily, but it will be wiped out
      3. From MacOS, in the Applications | Utility folder, run the Bootcamp Assistant
        1. After the Intro screen, you’ll see a “Select Tasks” screen
        2. Only select the first two tasks:
          1. Create a Windows 10 or later version install disk
          2. Download the latest Windows support software from Apple
          3. Do NOT select Install Windows 10 or later version (Uncheck this option from the screen)
        3. On the next screen, select the Windows ISO you downloaded, and the Flash Drive
        4. Click Continue and let the system write to the flash drive
        5. Exit Boot Camp Assistant when it's done
    3. So, what gets written to the Flash Drive?
      1. It’s a standard Windows Installer with Apple specific drivers added
      2. So you'll now copy those Apple specific drivers from this drive to the Windows to Go drive
    4. After the flash drive is done being written, eject it from the Mac
    5. Now boot your Mac from the Win to Go drive by holding down the Option key. You should see a Yellow Icon that looks like a USB drive called “EFI Folder”. Select that and let the system boot
    6. Ensure that you are connected to a network; as before, use a USB to Ethernet adapter if needed
    7. Run Windows Update, ensure the system is up to date
    8. Plug the newly created Win Installer USB into the Mac
    9. From the new Win Installer drive, copy the following two folders to the root of the Win To Go drive:
      1. $WINPEDRIVER$
      2. Boot Camp
    10. Eject the Win Installer drive
    11. On the Win to Go drive, go into the Boot Camp folder and run the Setup.exe
    12. Afterwards, the system will want to reboot, so reboot. Again make sure you’re connected to the internet. Hopefully on this reboot, the WiFi will be working and you can connect that way
    13. Now run the newly installed Apple Software Update. It will update any BootCamp drivers to newer versions. Reboot
    14. Then run Windows Update again, reboot if needed
    15. On my Mac, after doing all of the above, somehow Hibernation had gotten turned back on, so turn it off:
      1. Open an Elevated command prompt
      2. Run the following command:
        1. powercfg.exe /hibernate off
      3. That’s it! That’ll turn off hibernation and delete the hibernation file
    16. Mac Tips:
      1. On my trackpad, to do a right click, use a two-finger click in the lower part of the track pad.
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