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ZNDK

macrumors regular
Original poster
Mar 13, 2017
134
8
Japan
My Mac Pro 2008 always freezes when I click EFI Boot on the bootloader screen. I want to install Windows 10, but I am having trouble booting my Windows media.
When I try to boot with a Windows 10 DVD disc, the boot loader screen shows "Windows" and "EFI Boot" will be displayed. I click on "Windows" and the progression shows only the Windows logo and does not go on. I click on "EFI Boot" and it immediately freezes. Freezing due to EFI Boot occurs regardless of USB memory, HDD, or DVD.

I have tried PRAM Clear. Is there any other solution? I also tried OpenCore, but it doesn't seem to work with MP3.1.

Please help.
 

joevt

Contributor
Jun 21, 2012
6,652
4,075
You can't install Windows using UEFI 2.x on Mac Pro 2008 because Mac Pro 2008 has EFI 1.1 (at least not without some hacks), Therefore you need to use the Windows option.

If the Windows option fails, it may be because of PCIe devices that you have installed. What devices do you have installed? The problem may occur with any PCIe device that has a BIOS option rom (such as some PCIe cards that claim to be bootable for Windows).

I think DVD is the best option for Mac Pro 2008. USB might not work (or it might work only if Windows is not already installed - this behavior might be for other Macs?)
 
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Dayo

macrumors 68020
Dec 21, 2018
2,205
1,255
This guide should work for you:
Best to install Legacy Windows and use something like RefindPlus.

OpenCore needs UEFI Windows which can also be installed using that method but I don't think UEFI Windows can be readily installed on a cMP3,1.
 
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ZNDK

macrumors regular
Original poster
Mar 13, 2017
134
8
Japan
If the Windows option fails, it may be because of PCIe devices that you have installed. What devices do you have installed? The problem may occur with any PCIe device that has a BIOS option rom (such as some PCIe cards that claim to be bootable for Windows).
I have only added a video card. I have replaced the video card with a RADEON HD6850(Flashed to Mac EFI ROM).
I reverted back to my original nvidia GeForce 8800GT and the situation remained the same.

The EFI Boot of the Windows installation media (USB memory) created by the BootCamp assistant(include El Capitan) freezes in the same way. Is this also EFI 2.x?
 

ZNDK

macrumors regular
Original poster
Mar 13, 2017
134
8
Japan
As it turns out, I was able to install Windows itself. I was unable to install using the Mac Pro's internal DVD drive, but was able to successfully install from an external DVD drive (USB). Moreover, I had to go back to Windows 1709 install media. I was not able to use EFI Boot on the bootloader screen, and could only install Windows in MBR mode by selecting "Windows". It took me about 15 minutes to move on from the Windows logo screen.
For some reason, when I insert a DVD with Windows 10 18xx or later when starting up my Mac Pro, it is not recognized and ejected.

Is my Mac faulty and I can't use EFI Boot? Or is it a specification factor?
 

joevt

Contributor
Jun 21, 2012
6,652
4,075
Is my Mac faulty and I can't use EFI Boot? Or is it a specification factor?
MacPro3,1 doesn't have the EFI stuff that Windows wants. No one has created a guide to boot Windows using EFI on MacPro3,1 maybe because it's not possible. Maybe it is possible but some modifications and extra setup are definitely required.
 

Borowski

macrumors regular
Oct 22, 2018
209
48
Don't try using (U)EFI for Windows. You don't get any advantages on such old machines and it could brick your firmware, making your mac unusable.
 

Soba

macrumors 6502
May 28, 2003
450
700
Rochester, NY
Don't try using (U)EFI for Windows. You don't get any advantages on such old machines and it could brick your firmware, making your mac unusable.

@ZNDK This is correct. The classic Mac Pro systems do not support UEFI. Using UEFI mode in Windows 10 can ruin the Mac, forcing you to replace the entire logic board. Use MBR mode for Windows 10. You are already doing this, so you are exactly where you should be.

I don't have a 2008 Mac Pro anymore, but I believe you can run the latest Windows 10 on it and get all the hardware working with drivers available through Boot Camp or Windows Update. If you have trouble updating Windows or installing drivers, let us know and someone will help you with that.
 
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Alvin777

Suspended
Aug 31, 2003
503
39
Hi, interesting, isn't the BIOS/EFI/UEFI of Macs read-only? Will a UEFI Windows rewrite it's embedded firmware code? That's cool though if it gets to boot Windows 11 but the minimal version like Ghost Spectre 11 or Tiny 11 and others like it.

Linux Mint easily boots (one of the very few Linuxes that boots on a Mac, EFI Mac I've tried) on Macs. Linux Mint's Grub or Burg (a version of Grub that's easier to use) may do the trick.
 

Alvin777

Suspended
Aug 31, 2003
503
39
You can't install Windows using UEFI 2.x on Mac Pro 2008 because Mac Pro 2008 has EFI 1.1 (at least not without some hacks), Therefore you need to use the Windows option.

If the Windows option fails, it may be because of PCIe devices that you have installed. What devices do you have installed? The problem may occur with any PCIe device that has a BIOS option rom (such as some PCIe cards that claim to be bootable for Windows).

I think DVD is the best option for Mac Pro 2008. USB might not work (or it might work only if Windows is not already installed - this behavior might be for other Macs?)
Hi. I'm trying to make my Windows 11 USB Installer Flashdrive boot on the EFI based Mac, you mentioned "not without some hacks" do you have a link on how to modify it so the installer boots on the Mac?

Thank you.
 

Macschrauber

macrumors 68030
Dec 27, 2015
2,768
1,368
Germany
Hi, interesting, isn't the BIOS/EFI/UEFI of Macs read-only? Will a UEFI Windows rewrite it's embedded firmware code? That's cool though if it gets to boot Windows 11 but the minimal version like Ghost Spectre 11 or Tiny 11 and others like it.

Linux Mint easily boots (one of the very few Linuxes that boots on a Mac, EFI Mac I've tried) on Macs. Linux Mint's Grub or Burg (a version of Grub that's easier to use) may do the trick.
Uefi Windows writes a bunch of nvram variables. The certificate is a big nvram variable.

NVRAM is embedded into the Mac firmware, it lives in the same chip the firmware is stored.

These variables get not deleted with a nvram reset and take space and so triggers the circular refresh more often than necessary.

The circular log: https://forums.macrumors.com/posts/32100306/

Mac Pro 4.1/5.1 firmware chip has a limited erase ability of its cells.

So the wear of a firmware chip (as it stores NVRAM, too, what is not write protected) is more, when containing certificates.

Also we know by experience, that firmwares containing certificates tend more to bricks caused by botched NVRAM parts. Sometimes they don't get refreshed and override the next part. Various problems.

Certificates alone don't brick, but they help bricks more appear.

A backplane board has not to entirely replaced if so, the firmware chip is relatively easy to replace. More difficult is to reconstruct the content, as it contains several machine IDs.

So it’s recommended to backup it. I wrote the Dumper to backup and check it.

Also in the thread are some examples how the NVRAM circular log of writing / mark as deletable / renew the NVRAM section works in the firmware chip.

 
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