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Oct 6, 2010

Setting up a Mac 02: Bootcamp

OS X pictureIf you want to dual boot your shiny new Mac, you will need to install Bootcamp. Not one program, but a number of programs on both OS X and Mac, Bootcamp makes switching between the two operating systems a snap. This note is not a comprehensive guide to bootcamp, there are lots of docs on that, but a few tips from my experience.

What You Need to Start
Before you start the install, you will need a few things.
  1. First, you need a copy of Windows 7. I recommend the 64 bit version as this is gonna work best in the long run. If you know what your are doing, consider getting the System Builders version, it will save you a little money. If you want tech support, get the standard version linked here.

  2. Next, you need a wired connection to your Internet. Once my installation was done, the Wifi for the MacBook Pro did not work under Windows initially. This is not required but definitely makes things go smoother.
  3. A mouse. After the initial install, the track pad did not work completely. No right click for example. A simple 3 button mouse makes things a lot easier.
Bootcamp Installation
To start the installation, open Spotlight (Command Spacebar) and type boot. This should provide a link to the Bootcamp Assistant. Click on that and the assistant will walk your through the setup on the Mac side.

When you partition the drive, I would recommend a minimum of 80gig of space. Bootcamp assistant will name the new partition BOOTCAMP making it easy to know which partition to format when you install Windows.

Bootcamp will have you insert the install disc and will reboot and start the installation.

Once Windows Starts
Once Windows starts up, you need to install the Windows Bootcamp utilities. You will find these on your OS X operating system disc. This contains all the drivers and utilities to make your Mac work on Windows. Just insert the disc and run the installer.

Once the installation is complete, you should have all the drivers for your Mac installed. In addition, there will be a Bootcamp app in the system tray of your Windows system. At this point, you can proceed with your Windows patching and software installation.
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