Boot Camp lets you install Windows on a Mac computer, using a Microsoft Windows installation disc that you will create. Windows is installed on its own partition, and after installation you can boot to either Windows or Mac OS X on your Mac computer. A restart is required to switch between operating systems. This guide will help you set up Windows and install software drivers necessary for Windows to work on your Mac.
What you will need:
- An Intel-based Mac computer with OS X 10.6 or later
- Mac OS X install disk (this came with your Mac)
- At least 30 GB free space on your computer
- Blank DVD OR Windows 7 (or 10) install disk
- This guide will walk you through creating a Windows install disk on a blank DVD if needed.
- Check here to identify what version of Windows is supported on your Mac.
Download Windows and Burn to a Disk
If you already have a compatible Windows install disk you can skip this step and the next. Otherwise:
- Log in to Dreamspark using your NetID and NetID password.
- Search “Windows” and select an appropriate version, then click Add to cart. Complete the order – the cost will be $0, but you must complete the order to download the installation media and access the product key. Take note of the product key for later.
- If you want to complete the download and find the key at a later date, see here for steps to find it.
- Save the .iso somewhere you will be able to find it (e.g. your desktop).
- Open Applications > Utilities > Disk Utility.
- Click File > Open Disk Image…
- Select the .iso you downloaded from Dreamspark.
- Insert Blank DVD and click Burn.
Boot Camp – Partition Hard Drive and Install Windows
If you already have a compatible Windows install disk you can start here:
- Open Applications > Utilities > Boot Camp.
- When Boot Camp Assistant opens, click Continue.
- Create the Windows partition, dragging the slider to adjust partition size. Windows 7 requires a minimum of 20 GB, but more will be needed for applications. We recommend allowing 32 GB. When done, click Partition.
- When Partitioning is complete, insert your Windows DVD (if needed) and click Start Installation to restart and begin the installation.
- When the Windows DVD boots, click Install now to begin.
- On the next screen, read the license terms then check the box next to I accept the license terms. Click Next to proceed.
- Choose the Custom (advanced) installation type.
- Select the partition labelled BOOTCAMP and click Drive Options (advanced).
- Make sure the correct partition is selected, and click Format. If the wrong partition is selected for this step you will LOSE DATA.
- A popup window will appear warning you that any data stored on the partition will be lost. Click OK to continue.
- Once the partition has been formatted, click Next to continue.
- Windows 7 will now install. This could take some time, do not turn off or unplug your computer while this is happening. The computer will reboot to complete the process.
- Upon reboot, you will be prompted to create a local user account and name your computer – choose names and then click Next to continue.
- Next, you will be prompted to select a password for your local account. After doing so, click Next.
- On the next screen, enter the product key obtained from Dreamspark and click Next.
- When prompted to choose update settings, select Install important updates only.
- Configure your Date & Time and Wireless settings as needed. When complete, Windows 7 Desktop will start.
Boot Camp Driver Installation
After Windows is installed, you will need to install some additional drivers to ensure it functions properly on your Mac.
- Eject the Windows DVD and insert your Mac OS X Installation DVD.
- In the autoplay window, Run setup.exe.
- The Boot Camp installer will open and guide you through installation. Click Next to continue.
- Read the license agreement, select I accept the terms in the license agreement, and click Next to continue.
- Check the box next to Apple Software Update for Windows and click Install.
- When installation has completed, click Finish.
- You will be prompted to restart your computer for changes to take effect – click Yes.
- After the reboot, your screen resolution should look better, and you should have full functionality.