Tuesday 2 October 2018

How to add Dell EFI Diagnostic files to E2B

Some Dell Diagnostics and Tools are provided as bootable ISO files (e.g. Dell PowerEdge Support Live Image 3.0 here). It is easy to convert this to a .imgPTN file using the MPI Tool Kit so that you can MBR- and UEFI-boot from these ISOs.

EFI boot under VirtualBox of Dell Live Image 3.0

Some Dell systems have a UEFI pre-boot diagnostic already on the hard disk and provided that the hard disk is not completely corrupt or dead, you can use the Dell BIOS boot option to run these tests and check the hardware.

However, if you cannot boot from the diagnostic software on the hard disk, it is sometimes difficult to know if it is because of a corrupt/wiped hard disk, hardware fault in the hard disk itself, a BIOS configuration issue or a different hardware issue. In this case it is often useful to be able to boot from an E2B USB drive and run the same pre-boot diagnostic.

Here is a way to add as many different Dell pre-boot diagnostic EFI files as you want (using Clover you can also try them on non-Dell/non-UEFI systems too)...

Adding Dell .EFI diagnostic files to E2B

I used Diagnostics_Application_RFNN8_WN64_4301A21_4301.22.EXE which is available as a diagnostic update available here - however you must find the correct UEFI Diagnostics download for your particular model and in your own language.

1. Open the .exe file using 7Zip and double-click until you can extract the .efi file:

2. Make an empty folder on your Desktop and name the folder to something appropriate such as Dell_PowerEdge_PreBoot_Diag_RFNN8_WN64_4301A21_4301.22

3. Create a new \EFI and \EFI\BOOT folder inside the empty folder.

4. Copy the .EFI file into the \EFI\BOOT folder and name it BootX64.EFI (if it is a 64-bit UEFI file), or Bootia32.EFI (if it is a 32-bit UEFI file).


5. Now drag-and-drop the Dell_PowerEdge_PreBoot_Diag_RFNN8_WN64_4301A21_4301.22 folder onto the Desktop MPI_FAT32 shortcut to make a new .imgPTN file.

6. Copy the .imgPTN file to your E2B USB drive (e.g. to the \_ISO\UTILITIES folder). Don't forget to make it contiguous.

7. Now you should be able to switch to the .imgPTN file (using the E2B MBR menu or using \_ISO\SWITCH_E2B.exe) and UEFI-boot to the Dell diagnostic EFI file. Note that MBR-booting is not supported because we only have the EFI file, however you could try MBR-booting to the CSM menu and then running the Clover boot option (but there may be BIOS incompatibility issues).

If the mouse is not working, press F1 for help with keyboard shortcuts.

VirtualBox EFI boot
VirtualBox EFI - after execution.

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