What Is GPT Partition Style?
According to Wikipedia, GUID Partition Table (GPT) is a standard for the layout of partition tables of a physical PC storage device, such as an HDD or SSD. It uses universally unique identifiers that are also called globally unique identifiers.
GPT also has many benefits over its counterpart MBR.
1. GPT supports up to 128 primary partitions while MBR only supports 4 standard partitions.
2. The partition size of the MBR disk is limited to 2TB while GPT supports up to 9.4ZB large partition.
3. The data structures of GPT are well defined which helps detect data corruption with more ease and also improves the chances of successful data recovery when hard drives are damaged or have bad sectors.
4. Based on the official news from Microsoft, Windows 11 only supports UEFI mode to boot. If you want to upgrade to Windows 11, you'd have to choose a GPT disk as the system disk.
Despite so many benefits, GPT also has its limit. It is not able to boot computer via BIOS or to boot from a GPT–initialized device, your system must support UEFI boot mode.
Why Remove GPT Partition Style?
Sometimes, users can run into problems or errors when running a computer with a GPT encoded disk. In these cases, it’s necessary to remove the GPT partition style and replace it with MBR. Here, I list 2 major situations where you should make the replacement.
Unsuccessful Windows Installation
For certain purposes, you may need to install or reinstall Windows Operating System, probably when you encounter a PC crash in setup. As usual, you start with Windows Installation USB and follow instructions to install the OS. Suddenly, the error occurs “Windows cannot be installed on this disk. The selected disk is of the GPT partition style”. You have no idea what to do and try to figure out the reason behind this.
Of course, this is the issue we’ve already talked about above – you’re trying to boot your PC via BIOS without the support from UEFI.
GPT Protective Partition Issue
In a word, A GPT protective partition is the partition that’s protected by GUID Partition Table. GPT protective partition, which is usually created by a hard drive in GPT on old 32-bit computers, is different from average partitions for it can’t be reformatted or deleted in the program of Windows Management. It doesn’t have a unique drive letter either. Moreover, MBR-based OS can’t read GPT protective partitions and users can’t access them.
In all, to have a successful system booting or have free access to files stored in GPT protective partitions, we must remove the GPT partition style.
How to Remove GPT Partition via CMD?
When it comes to “how to remove GPT partition style”, the first thing coming to your mind must be Command-Line for it’s a Windows’ inbuilt feature and it’s available in the versions after Windows 2000.
Note: In this process, all partitions on the disk will be deleted. So, please have a backup first.
1. Right-click on “This PC” > “Manage” > Disk Management. Check the number of the disk from which you hope to remove GPT and keep that in mind.
2. Press “Windows + R“ to launch the Run box.
3. Type “diskpart” in the box and hit “OK”.
4. Input “list disk” and hit “ENTER”.
5. Type “select disk *”（”*” represent the number of the GPT disk）and hit “ENTER”.
6. Type “clean” and hit “ENTER”.
7. Type “convert mbr” and hit “ENTER”.
Now, go to Disk Management and right-click on the target disk, select “Properties” > “Volume”, and then, you’ll find the disk is in MBR.
Safe Software to Remove GPT Partition without Data Loss
Before using Diskpart to remove GPT, we have to back up data first because everything will be cleared in “clean”. It seems so troublesome. Is there a better alternative that is lossless? The answer is yes - AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional helps remove a GPT partition without data loss and it only requires a few steps which save you more time. Moreover, if you hope to migrate OS from MBR to GPT or clone any disk, this software provides as many functionalities as you can think of!
How do I remove a GPT partition? Now, it’s time to download this powerful software demo to have a try!
Step 1. Install and launch AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional. Then, you can see all partitions and disks on the interface.
Step 2. Select the GPT disk, right-click on it, and hit “Convert to MBR Disk”.
Step 3. Click on “OK”.
Step 4. Hit “Apply” on the upper left and click on “Proceed” to start the conversion.
The entire process will be finished in a few seconds and then, you’ll find the GPT disk is converted to MBR and all partitions are also intact on the disk.
How to remove the GPT partition style safely? Diskpart offers to delete GPT and replace it with MBR via commands. It’s free but complex and suffers from data loss. AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional makes it much easier by combining the steps into one and won’t clean the data on the safer GPT disk. So, considering convenience and safety, I prefer the latter one.
To use this software on Server 2003, 2008 (R2), 2012 (R2), 2016, 2019, and SBS 2003, 2008, 2011, please try the Server version.