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ghporter Oct 7, 2006 10:10 PM
Official Boot Camp Primer Thread
Like the Parallels Primer thread, this one is here for people to provide their insights in how to get Boot Camp to do what you want. I don't think we need details about how to use Vista with BC, at least not yet, but recommendations about partition size, how drivers do their thing and when they need attention, and so on would be ideal.

I'd like this to be the kind of thing you'd tell a buddy if he or she was going to install Boot Camp to run Windows XP, including pitfalls, traps, and those little things that make everything wonderful or horrible.

Have at it!
residentEvil Oct 23, 2006 10:09 AM
I didn't search, but...

Is there already a list of hardware that is known to work (as opposed to the mininum requirements posted on apple's site. we all know that those two lists don't always hold water in the real world).
ghporter Oct 28, 2006 07:23 AM
Having waited a suitable length of time for others to see this thread and add to it on their own, I'm now going to GET VOCAL about it.

residentEvil's question is great-but I think we're going to have to assemble the list he wants ourselves. What hardware DEFINITELY supports Boot Camp and dual booting through it? What, beyond the obvious short list, have you had success with aside from "an Intel Mac ?" Any Intel Macs give anyone real problems or refuse to work?
Andrew Monkhouse Oct 29, 2006 12:38 PM
Would it work better if people also listed the hardware that they have tried and confirmed to work?

For example, I could then confirm that the following hardware works:

andrews-computer:~ andrew$ grep Hardware /var/log/install.log
Jul 28 21:20:28 localhost : Hardware: Macmini1,1 @ 1660 MHz (x2), 2048 MB

When combined with the following version of the OS:

andrews-computer:~ andrew$ sw_vers
ProductName: Mac OS X
ProductVersion: 10.4.8
BuildVersion: 8L2127
ghporter Oct 29, 2006 05:51 PM
Good idea, Andrew! Listing both hardware and software, (and maybe firmware version) seems like a no-brainer now that you mention it. I wish I had thought of it myself.
residentEvil Nov 6, 2006 12:10 PM
My original request for the list was for my own personal cash flow reasons...

Not that you all care about my purchasing decisions; but I'm going to spend $2500 - $3000 on a new machine and I want to for sure be able to play the windows version of AOE III. I haven't found enough users who a) either have the newes iMac or newest MacBook Pro to fully try bootcamp + games or b) have a copy of AOE III windows to try it out.

If I had a list to work from on the Apple side that listed hardware that worked with windows/games, I'd be happy camper then narrow down from there. As it stands, the 20" iMac fully upgraded looks like my best choice right now ($3003 with applecare).
residentEvil Nov 6, 2006 12:12 PM
uhm, what happened to the Edit buttons?

anyway, I'll know in a few days on new 15" core 2 dual MacBook Pro and will have that as a test too. this of course, is a work machine for demos/proof of concepts for several departments (i get to set it up first so i will be able to test AOE III first hand). i think it will complain about the built in video card...but will it run is what i need to know.
residentEvil Nov 9, 2006 07:46 AM
i will now have 2 machines to test/add to the list.

work is buying a new 15" MacBook Pro; and i get to set it up/test it. and, i personally bought the new 13" MacBook C2D that came out yesterday (in black :) ). i will get some bootcamp impressions on both.
residentEvil Nov 14, 2006 06:57 PM
age of empires III (with downloaded latest patch) plays pretty darn well (very acceptable to me) on the new MacBook 13" Black with current Bootcamp 1.1.2.

2.0Ghz C2D
Build: 8N1106

So does Autocad 2007, MatLAB and SolidEdge. Have not tried Abaqus yet.
ghporter Dec 26, 2006 08:22 PM
"OMGWTFBBQ!!! I booted to Windows, and now I can't boot into OS X!!!!! All is lost!!! Arrggggghhhhh!!!"

Or something like that. I've seen a bunch of these posts and I finally figured out that I should say something about this rather common and maybe scary issue. It's a matter of a goofed up preference and that's all, but when they don't seem to get the choice of what OS is booting, people often freak out.

Just HOLD THE ALT KEY WHEN YOU HEAR THE STARTUP CHIME. You'll get a menu that lets you choose which OS you want to boot into; choose OS X. Now, you can go into the Startup Disk preferences to choose OS X as the default.

For full information, here's what the Boot Camp FAQ says:
How do I choose which operating system to start up (boot) into?

After running Boot Camp Beta and installing Windows XP and the Macintosh Drivers CD, you can switch between Windows XP and Mac OS X by holding Option (Alt) key when you start up. You can also use the Startup Disk control panel in Windows or Mac OS X Startup Disk preferences to set the default operating system to use each time the computer starts up.
This item will go into the (eventual) Handy-Dandy Boot Camp FAQ we build here...
flop Apr 13, 2007 01:52 PM
Quote, Originally Posted by residentEvil (Post 3177498)
I didn't search, but...

Is there already a list of hardware that is known to work (as opposed to the mininum requirements posted on apple's site. we all know that those two lists don't always hold water in the real world).
:brick: :brick: :brick:
You’re so right about those lists. So, where is the real stuff? Does someone actually know?
trappedatuf Apr 21, 2007 06:53 AM
Ok, so I wanted a little more speed so I upgraded with a 7200 RPM 100GB hard-drive. I did this also to test if my backup/restore method worked before a harddrive crash actually happens.


So I replaced the current hard-drive with the new one (which was simple enough since the macbooks are built so well). I inserted the Apple Setup disk and installed OSX. I then had some issues making the partition because I wanted my Windows partition to be as large as possible, but you have to have a 5GB buffer on the Mac partition so it ended up being about 25GB for OSX and the rest for Windows.

Once OSX was installed and updated, I downloaded bootcamp and went through until it said "restart to install Windows". I then restarted thinking since the drive was partitioned now (that's all I needed boot camp for anyway), that I could just restore my backup. So that's what I did.

I put the BartPE disk in the drive and ran DriveImage XML to restore the backed up image from a USB HDD. That left me with my drive properly restore but OH NO! When I held down the 'option (alt)' key on startup to select the newly restore Windows partition it didn't show up on the list. Realizing this has something to do with the boot record I booted into OSX to solve the problem. Well, since BootCamp never installed XP it still was asking me to start the install and didn't have the Startup Disk selection program installed. I then ran the disk utilities but I couldn't do anything to make the Windows partition active.

I re-ran the Bart PE disk and tried to run the Windows Disk Management program but that did nothing. Arghhh! After all this time invested I couldn't believe that I couldn't load up a simple FDISK program to set the partition active and bootable (which is what I thought needed to be done). I even ran the Recovery Console on the Windows XP install disk and ran such programs as FIXBOOT and FIXMBR. Nothing worked!

SO BACK TO SQUARE ONE. I decided to do it all over and now I am typing this on my restored XP installation on my new 7200RPM hard-drive.


(if you are just restoring on a current harddrive then you don't have to reinstall OSX and such, just skip to the last step):

1. Replace the old hard-drive with the new one.

2. Start up the computer and put in the OSX install DVD (disk 1). You will then enter the setup program. TIP: I wanted to use most of my space for WIN XP and didn't need all the OSX apps. I really liked messing around with GarageBand but it takes up over 2GB (with all the sound loops and such) so I didn't want to install it. When installing OSX you can select the 'customize' button and deselect ALL the programs you don't think you'll need. I got my OSX install down to a little under 3GB! Quite a savings. Check out a program call DiskSweeper that will go through and tell you what files/folders use the most space on the drive, if you want to minimize your install size.

3. Once OSX is installed you need to update your Tiger OS to the newest version. The update program will automatically ask you if you want to do this. Also download bootcamp from the Apple website.

4. After the updates are applied reboot your computer and then install BootCamp.

5. You will then be able to set how big a partition you want for Windows. I chose the most possible which is 5GB larger than the OSX used space (I guess Apple just chose 5GB of free space as a good buffer size). After it creates the partition you need to actually go through with the install of Windows XP.

6. Follow the setups and go through the entire WIN XP install process (takes a little under an hour). Once Windows XP is installed you will see it adds that choice to the startup options (when holding down the option/alt key on startup).

7. Now it's time to restore your WIN XP partition. Just boot up with your BartPE disk as described above and run DriveImage XML. Then select restore your image and after the restore process completes you can now boot into the Windows partition and use your computer just as it was with your new hard-drive.

THAT'S ALL FOLKS... A pretty simple process, just had to nail it down. Now I am sure there is a better way (and please let me know how) but this is a way I know will work now so I wanted to post it here.

The total process took me about 2 hours total. (A) Installing OSX takes about 30 minutes with minimal install size (B) Updating, installing and partitioning with boot camp takes another 15 minutes or so (C) Installing Windows takes about 45 minutes and (D) Restoring my 50GB drive image (onto my new 83GB partition) took about 45 minutes. TOTAL RESTORE TIME = 2 hours and 15 minutes.

I hope this helps and I do agree ghporter, I think this topic is "sticky worthy".
ghporter Apr 21, 2007 08:27 AM
Here's a link to Bart's PE and one for Driveimage XML.

Bart's stuff is awesome, but it takes a little time and some study to get it all working.
ghporter May 1, 2007 06:29 PM
Per this thread, it looks like it's possible to confuse the Boot Camp boot selection system if your Apple USB keyboard has certain devices plugged into it. I think it may be a good idea to not have ANYTHING plugged into it when you want to select a different OS to boot into.
ghporter Aug 2, 2007 10:05 AM
The dreaded ''verfication failed. this disk could not be partitioned'' error.

Why does this happen?
>>There's a problem in the low-level data structures of your hard drive. Nothing that would keep OS X from running, but enough that the disk's structure can't be altered without being fixed first.

It says ''use disk utility to repair this disk.'' but I can't select the disk in Disk Utility to have it fix the disk. Why?
>> Because OS X cannot access the "entire disk". This keeps a rogue program from hosing your whole system.

How can I fix it then?
>>Boot your computer from your OS X install disc. When the boot process finishes, note the menu bar at the top. Select "Tools" from it, and then select Disk Utility from that menu. Now you can select the whole disk and have Disk Utility fix it.

Why does that work?
>>Since you're not running OS X (per se), but instead the installer, access to the whole disk is not a problem.
daneel Sep 15, 2007 11:18 AM
Symptom : you get to the grey screen but are not able to boot windows (both option key and startup disk method). but the windows disk is there and working fine.

Diagnosis : For some strange reason, your USB peripherals are causing this behaviour.

Prognosis : Switch off or unplug all peripherals during boot time.
ShortcutToMoncton Sep 20, 2007 04:27 PM
I just got my new Macbook Pro today. I've got the 120 gig drive, and I was thinking about eventually installing Boot Camp, so it's probably better to just partition the drive now, right?

Anyone have any recommendations about drive partitioning size? Are there any issues with Boot Camp on the new Macbooks that anyone might know about?

Thanks for the help!

Cold Warrior Sep 20, 2007 04:52 PM
Quote, Originally Posted by ShortcutToMoncton (Post 3488406)
I just got my new Macbook Pro today. I've got the 120 gig drive, and I was thinking about eventually installing Boot Camp, so it's probably better to just partition the drive now, right?

Anyone have any recommendations about drive partitioning size? Are there any issues with Boot Camp on the new Macbooks that anyone might know about?

Thanks for the help!

Boot Camp partitions for Windows without destroying your Mac partition or data, so there's no downside to waiting until you're ready for Windows.
ghporter Sep 21, 2007 02:47 PM
Use Boot Camp to set up the partition for Windows. That will make your eventual installation go MUCH better and smoother. There are ways to use an existing partition for Windows that don't depend on BC, but they are not supported by Apple and there is literally no telling what else might be needed or might go wrong.

Decide how much space for Windows based on what you want to do with it. Run a few apps? Do everything? Run games that take up dozens of gigabytes for just the install? Err on the side of going with a larger partition. I have a 300GB drive in my iMac, and I gave Windows 50GB, which should be fine for what I do. Just remember that there is currently no application that will resize the OS X and Windows partitions non-destructively.
soon2bmac Nov 27, 2007 10:16 PM
I have been reading down through this thread because I am thinking about doing the whole boot camp thing but what if I dont like it or decide that I want my space back for OSX? How do I get rid of the partition? Disk utility?
ghporter Nov 28, 2007 09:06 AM
You use the Boot Camp Utility to eliminate the Windows partition. The Boot Camp Utility opens with three options onscreen: one to set up a Windows partition (and install Windows), one to remove that partition ("restore the startup disk to a single partion"), and one to burn a driver disc. It's pretty simple to use.

You should know that neither Disk Utility nor Boot Camp will partition "on the fly". You can't change the size of your Windows partition once you set it up, so you should think hard about how much space you "might" need and set up the partition accordingly.
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