View Full Version : OF vs. EFI features

01-13-2006, 01:47 PM
This is just rumor at this point. Sure we will see good info in days or weeks regarding functionality of EFI on new machines.

Grabbed an Apple guy at MacWorld SF yesterday that seemed pretty savy, and grilled him a bit on EFI. This is what he said:

• There is a shell, but it is disabled on Macs
• Target Disk Mode is available, but must boot from another Mac running 10.4 (10.4.4?)
• Can boot to EFI and reset NVRAM, etc. (I assume CLI, don't know the key combo)
• Can make bootable clones via Restore as of 10.4.4, but drive partitioning is slightly different, so not portable to PPC Macs and vica versa
• Don't expect third party tools to make bootable clones yet; modifcations of the software will be required

01-13-2006, 03:37 PM
At the Macworld Expo this week in San Francisco, Apple executives confirmed that Windows Vista will run on the new Intel-based iMac desktop and MacBook Pro computers that the company is rolling out this year. However, Apple won't promote or support Windows on the new Macs, and users who want to dual-boot between Mac OS X and Windows on those machines still face some technical hurdles.

"We don't mind [if people want to install Windows on Macs]," Apple Senior Vice President Phil Schiller said this week. "If there are people who love our hardware but are forced to put up with a Windows world, then that's OK." On the flipside, Apple won't allow customers to install Intel-based versions of Mac OS X on standard PCs.

One technical problem will require some thinking, at least for Windows XP users. The new Macs use a new type of BIOS named Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI), which Intel developed. This interface is currently incompatible with the 32-bit version of XP. However, it's likely that an enterprising hacker will create an OS boot loader of some kind that lets customers install XP and then dual boot it with Mac OS X.

Unlike XP, Vista, Microsoft's next-generation OS, natively supports EFI, so it should be relatively easy to wipe out Mac OS X and install Vista on the new Macs. And because the Intel-based Macs are based on standard Intel and ATI hardware, Vista will likely prove to be compatible with the system's hardware.

The possibilities opened up by dual booting Vista and Mac OS X on the same hardware are compelling for a number of reasons. To test this scenario, I've ordered a 20-inch iMac from Apple. I'll publish the results of my tests on the SuperSite for Windows in the weeks ahead.


01-13-2006, 05:02 PM
In the article I linked to from www.apcmag.com :

Intel Australia, while being careful not to comment on Apple's hardware specifically, says motherboards based on the Intel 945 chipset already support EFI and can boot Windows with no problems.

This cryptic statement can't be taken as full reassurance though: it may be that 945 boards support EFI but do not come with it installed by default.

APC is awaiting an official response from Microsoft USA on how Windows XP works with EFI. WeÍll update this story when we hear back. And it seems Apple is using 945 from what I gather.

12-17-2006, 09:03 AM
Looks like Microsoft wants to implement Universal EFI 2.0 but only for 64-bit systems.

Support for GUID is already there. More in the FAQ => Firmware thread.