Installing Windows 7/8/10 on a new DELL laptop (using CD)

For those who do not want to read:

When installing windows 7,8,10 on DELL Inspiron 

  • press F2 to enter BIOS
  • disable the secure boot first in the secure boot tab
  • adjust the BIOS to by changing the UEFI to legacy under the boot sequence tab
  • select the priority by clicking on the arrow above so that the CD/DVD comes first.
  • apply the settings
  • click EXIT
  • when the computer restarts quickly hit F12 numerous times
  • click  CD/DVD/CD-RW Drive
  • the windows installation starts.

After the installation is done go back to the BIOS and change the boot sequence order again by letting the hard drive (since your OS is located their) to be the first hardware component to start.



A friend of mine asked me If I could install Windows on his machine because he was not quite certain how to use the BIOS (basic input output system) and to configure the boot sequence. I must say that I was quite surprised with the DELL BIOS configuration and also I want to say that the HP and Lenovo BIOS is much more comfortable to work with.

In this article I want to quickly explain the following things:

  • NTFS
  • UEFI
  • MBR
  • GPT
  • Boot sequence
  • Secure boot
  • SATA

Let’s start:

FIRMWARE: represents the BIOS software which you can see if you press F2 on a dell laptop. You can make all sorts of configuration inside. It looks like a software from the seventies. It is located in ROM and you “cannot” delete it.

NTFS: represents a file system, system which takes care of the order of the files in the hard disk as well as maintaining space inside the hard disk.

LEGACY: a mode which refers to BIOS firmware. It also allows you to see the list of all available devices that you computer has. When installing any OS it is still a good advice to enable LEGACY and disable UEFI because you can have the authorization to use the CD/DVD and hence install your OS.

UEFI: Unified Extensible Firmware Interface(UEFI) is a “upgraded BIOS software”. UEFI offers secure boot which can have some repercussions when installing any OS (you have to disable it sometimes to allow your OS to boot properly). UEFI is a good upgrade since it prevents boot viruses from loading. UEFI offers many useful features as well.

MBR & GPT: both formats specify physical partitioning information on the hard disk. Often when installing windows you will have to convert MBR to GPT in order to put your OS in a desired partition. MBR stands for Master Boot record and GPT stands for GUID partition table.

Boot sequence: pretty much straight forward. You will definitely interact with this inside the BIOS when installing a new OS via CD/DVD or USB. It allows you to change the order pf the device which will first boot. It is mandatory to adjust this setting otherwise when installing OS and when the restart event takes place your computer will start the whole process rather than proceed with the installation.

Secure boot: associated with the UEFI part, the upgraded BIOS software which makes some restriction when booting up anything the system. This is usually turned off in DELL when you are installing a new OS to the device.

System reserved: This can be seen after your write the 25 character key when installing a windows OS (7,8,10). Don’t be afraid to erase it because you don’t need it. It represents the default OS that came with the laptop/computer which your bought. When formatting and deleting the system reserved you will then be allowed to install your OS.

Solving problems with cmd: When you come to the section where you have to enter the 25 character key press  FN->SHIFT->F10

  • type diskpart, click enter
  • type list, click enter
  • type select disk 0_or_1 (usually 0 or 1, look at the table above in cmd), click enter
  • type clean, click enter

OPTIONAL (type after entered the above immediately )

  • type convert gpt, click enter
  • type exit, click enter
  • close the CMD window

Here is a youtube tutorial if you get stuck in any of the steps above:

SATA: the standard hardware interface for connecting hard drives, solid state drives (SSDs) and CD/DVD drives to the computer. Introduced in 2001, nearly all computers use SATA drives (taken from: