With the press of a button, you can switch between Mac and Windows every time your computer turns on. Probably the most common reason Mac owners use Boot Camp is to play Windows-only games. Play it safe and go with the large allocation. Before you run Boot Camp, Apple recommends you have the latest software update and that you backup your important files.
Need help backing up your data?
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Our sister site Macworld has put together the best software for backing up your files. Time for the main event. If you have a Mac from or later, the process is a bit simpler. This method is probably the easiest way to install Windows, but it only works for Macs from and up. To switch between your Mac and Windows partition, hold down the Option key during a boot or reboot sequence to bring up the OS-selection menu. While Macs from pre can still run Windows, the installation process is slightly more complex.
This method takes a bit of patience so bear with us. Still having trouble installing Windows? Refer to your Windows documentation for more help. Now that you have both macOS and Windows installed and functioning on your Mac, you can choose which operating system to launch at startup. Dieter is a staff writer covering consumer tech, apps, and services.
Tweet your hate mail to dieterholger. Table of Contents Check system requirements, then buy Windows Make sure your Mac has enough hard drive space Check for updates and backup Install Windows How to choose your operating system at startup Show More. Click Storage so you can see how much free space on your hard drive.
Check for updates and backup Before you run Boot Camp, Apple recommends you have the latest software update and that you backup your important files. Click the Apple menu in the upper left and then hit App Store. Go to Updates and install any software updates for macOS. Restart your computer if prompted. After restarting, check for software updates again until no new ones are available.
Because Boot Camp will be moving and re-allocating space on your hard drive, you should back up any important data before you continue, in case anything becomes corrupted during the process. Install Windows Time for the main event.
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Quit all open applications and then open up a Finder window. Open Boot Camp Assistant , then click Continue. The next step is to partition your hard drive. IDG Move the slider to give your Windows partition more or less space. Remember that any space you assign will be taken from the available space for your Mac, and that macOS will run more efficiently if you leave at least 30 to 40GB of space free on its partition. The operating system offers a different experience, especially Lion OS X, which may make it more appealing to novice PC users or those not wanting to search through many file names on a constant basis.
Keep in mind that you need to be at OS X If you are a Snow Leopard user and have been following standard software updates from the Apple menu, you should be at You can read about this update here directly from Apple's website and update. Lion's latest update, as of this writing, is You can head over here to read about it and update directly from Apple's website. Step 2 : Make sure your Boot Camp is up to date, which means version 4.
Boot Camp is an assistant application and you can read the manual on Apple's website. If you have Snow Leopard or Lion installed, Boot Camp should already be included, but make sure it is up to date. If you have a Mac without an optical drive, like a Macbook Air, make sure you either have an external drive with a Windows 7 disc; or, if you want to update from an ISO image via a USB flash drive, make sure you update form Boot Camp 4.
Step 3 : Have a Windows 7 Install disc ready. You can use either 32bit or 64bit, although 64bit is recommended for the best performance. This is also mentioned in Apple's manual for Boot Camp 4. Apple also lists the exact Mac models compatible with Windows 7 bit. In orderto do this from Snow Leopard, you need to click on applications from the Dock. Then click on utilities. It should be located toward the middle of the second row from the top.
From Lion you can go to utilities directly from Launchpad. From here, go ahead and click on the Boot Camp Assistant.
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Step 5 : Follow the instructions and download the additional software necessary to support Windows on your Mac. Updates to drivers will allow your Apple peripherals like keyboards, mice and cameras to work on the Windows partition. Alternatively, you can insert your Mac installation disc to download these drivers this may depend on if your Mac came with Lion or Snow Leopard and the type of Mac you have. Step 6 : After you installed the Windows compatibility driver software, go ahead and create a Windows partition.
You will be asked if you want to create a Windows partition first. You want to do this.
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A Windows partition will allow you to choose how much of your hard drive space you want to devote to Windows vs. Alternatively, if you hardly plan on using Windows, choose a lower number for the Windows partition. Step 7 : Next, you want to start the installer.
You will be asked to insert the Windows 7 disc or USB drive with the software and then the installation process will start. The menu will be similar to the one above in step 6. It will appear after you finish selecting the size of your Windows partition. You can also use a different drive if you have multiple hard drives or solid-state drives installed inside your Mac.
Keep in mind, however, that external drives cannot be used to host the Windows partition, as Apple mentions here. Step 8 : Restart your Mac and boot it into Windows. If you own Snow Leopard, you can press the Option Alt key on your keyboard to go to a menu where Apple asks you which operating system you want to use. Alternatively, you can use the Startup Disk control panel to choose your default starting operating system.
When you boot into Windows, you will need to go through the process of updating drivers and making sure your Apple peripherals, like mice and keyboards, work correctly.