Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Dell T3600, Windows 8, UEFI, and me

I ran across an issue with UEFI, Windows 8, and the Dell T3600 Workstation (BIOS version A04).

Windows 8 will randomly blue screen when copying a large amount of data from a CIFS share to the local disk.  This occurs after copying about 8GB of data out of about a 100GB dataset, consisting of random user files.  I was able to reproduce this consistently. 

This appears to be a UEFI issue since after reinstalling with legacy BIOS boot, the blue screen has not re-occurred

Dell currently does support Windows 8 for this hardware yet so one would expect that future BIOS releases will address this issue.

Other than the blue screen, there was only one unrecognized device and installing the Windows 7 version of the "Unified AMT 7 WS Management Interface " from Dell's website fixed that.  So far things have been running fine for the past week or so.

Note that for the UEFI install, one needs a FAT32 formatted USB stick.  The current version of the Windows 7 USB boot tool creates an NTFS formatted stick which will not allow the UEFI boot to occur.

Update 3/31/2013: Dell BIOS A08 seems to cause daily blue screens with Windows 8. A07 seems to be stable.  I haven't tried UEFI with any newer BIOS.

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