Fix The Boot Camp Problem In Macs With Optical Drive

13.06.2020by

Method 4: Repair the Boot Camp drivers. To repair the Boot Camp drivers, follow these steps: Repair the Boot Camp drivers. Start your Mac and boot into Windows. Insert your Mac OS installation disk. If the installer window doesn’t appear automatically, click the a. Start button, click Computer. Click the drive that contains the Mac OS disk. Typically, when you run the Bootcamp assistant on Macs that come as standard with an optical drive, you won't be given an option to create a USB Windows install disk. There's a few reason you might want this, for example if you've replaced your optical drive with a second hard drive. This Guide could help. Jun 19, 2015  If you see a No bootable device error, either you are using a USB3 flash drive or your ISO/DVD source for Windows is corrupt. In some rare cases, the rightmost USB port in the back of the Mini when facing the Mini works, but others may not. (This usually requires an SMC Reset). Apr 01, 2020  Or use your built-in keyboard or a wired keyboard. If you're using a keyboard made for a PC, such as a keyboard with a Windows logo, try a keyboard made for Mac. If you're using Boot Camp to start up from Microsoft Windows, set Startup Disk preferences to start up from macOS instead. Then shut down or restart and try again. No bootable device USB 2.0 MacBook Pro mid 2014. To use an external optical drive. The method you refer to, is that making use of eg virtual box? Drive on the.

Windows 8 arrives

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For many Mac users who occasionally need to run Windows applications, virtualization solutions like Parallels Desktop, VMware Fusion, and VirtualBox are often the best way to do so. You take a definite performance hit with virtualization programs, but for most people the ability to run the applications they need without rebooting is more than convenient enough to make up for such shortcomings.

There is one exception: gaming. 3D performance is either much-reduced by virtualization or (in the case of VirtualBox) completely non-existent, and given that most Macs don't have top-shelf graphics processors to begin with, there's simply no substitute for running Windows on bare metal, as they say.

This means using Boot Camp to install Windows on your Mac as you would to any PC, and that means relying on Apple's Windows drivers to get everything working properly. The issue is that Apple doesn't exactly prioritize Windows driver updates, and this is doubly true when a new version of Windows is concerned: Boot Camp support for Windows 7 trailed general availability by about three months, and the song remains the same for Windows 8.

But official support be damned, we say! We installed Windows 8 on our 2011 iMac and 2010 MacBook Air to see what happened, and we kept a log of our findings to help those of you who don't feel like waiting on Apple's drivers.

Setup process

Because we haven't talked about this in a while, let's take a gander at the Boot Camp installation process as it stands in Mountain Lion. Here's what you need:

  • A Mac that supports Mountain Lion and has at least 20GB of free disk space, though more is obviously preferable.
  • A valid Windows 8 or Windows 8 Pro license key. For the purposes of this article, we're going to assume you're working with the 64-bit version of Windows (and at this point, you probably should be anyway).
  • If you're using a Mac with an optical drive or a MacBook Air older than the 2011 model, you'll need a Windows 8 install DVD (and, for the older Airs, an external optical drive).
  • If you're using a 2011 or 2012 MacBook Air or any other Mac without an optical drive, you'll need either an external optical drive and a Windows 8 install DVD, or a 4GB or larger USB stick and a Windows 8 ISO file. More on this in a bit.
  • A FAT-formatted external drive or blank CD or DVD on which to store the Windows driver files.

Once you've gathered the necessary materials, launch the Boot Camp Assistant from Spotlight or by navigating to Applications and then to Utilities. It will walk you through partitioning your drive to install Windows, downloading the necessary driver files to your external drive, and (for newer MacBook Airs, Retina MacBook Pros, iMacs, and Mac Minis without optical drives), creating a USB installer for Windows from an ISO file.

Users of slightly older Macs, however, will notice that the installer still requires a Windows install DVD before it will start working, and the option to create a USB drive isn't even available—those with access to an optical drive cannot opt to use any other method. Strangely, this requirement applies even to 2010, 2009, and 2008-era MacBook Airs, all of which shipped without optical drives; people with those computers will have to find an external optical drive before continuing.

After formatting your drive, let the Boot Camp Assistant reboot your computer, and install Windows to your newly created Boot Camp partition as you would to any PC. When going through the installer, be sure to reformat the Boot Camp partition to NTFS, but don't delete it—this will break the partition and require you to start over again from the beginning.

These days, the Windows installer is dead simple to get through as long as you're not terrified of technology—enter your product key and create a user account and you've done most of the heavy lifting. Once you reach the Start screen, insert the external drive containing the Windows support files, navigate to it from the desktop, and run setup.exe.

The Boot Camp installer shouldn't throw up any red flags—accept all of the setup defaults, and sit back and wait while it installs all of Apple's driver software along with Apple Software Update, and reboot when it prompts you to.

Fix The Boot Camp Problem In Macs With Optical Drive Software

How does it work?

The vast majority of programs and drivers that work with Windows 7 also work with Windows 8. Luckily this also applies to much of Apple's Boot Camp software, including read-only access to your Mac's HFS-formatted partition, the Boot Camp control panel that lets you select your default boot partition and adjust other system settings, and the software that makes the Mac's function keys operate as they all do in OS X.

There are some small issues: the graphical overlays for things like volume and brightness don't show up in Windows 8, though the buttons operate normally, and things that bother me about Boot Camp in Windows 7 (like the inability to access FileVault-encrypted volumes) persist in Windows 8, but the new operating system doesn't bring any major, system-breaking new problems.

Driver issues

Fix The Boot Camp Problem In Macs With Optical Drive In Windows 7

Drive

The biggest issues, especially for gamers, are the drivers. Depending on the Mac you have, you may need to track down and install some additional drivers yourself—2009 and 2010-era Macs with NVIDIA chipsets will probably need to download a separate chipset driver, available here (most Macs use vanilla Intel chipsets, though, so it shouldn't be an issue for anyone else).

The bigger problem is simply outdated drivers, particularly graphics drivers. The Boot Camp 4.0 software came out with Lion in summer of 2011 and hasn't really been updated since then, and as a result you may find yourself using drivers missing almost two years of fixes and performance enhancements.

Luckily, new drivers are just a few clicks away—Macs use standard PC graphics chips, and these can be powered with standard PC drivers. Below, I've laid out a table of Macs, the graphics chips they use, the driver you'll want to download to go with them, and any other applicable information you'll need to know. All of the drivers below are for use with the 64-bit versions of Windows 8 (but even if you're still sticking with Windows 7, these drivers should help you out, too).

MacsMacBook Air (2011, 2012), 13-inch MacBook Pro (2011, 2012), 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro (2012), Mac Mini (some 2011, 2012)MacBook Air (Late 2008, 2009, 2010), 13-inch MacBook (2009, 2010), 13-inch MacBook Pro and aluminum MacBook (Late 2008, 2009, 2010), 15-inch MacBook Pro (2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012) 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro (2012), 17-inch MacBook Pro (2007, 2008, 2009, 2010), Mac Mini (2009, 2010), iMac (Early 2009, some late 2009, 2012)15-inch MacBook Pro (2011), 17-inch MacBook Pro (2011), Mac Mini (some 2011), iMac (some 2010, 2011), Mac Pro (2010, 2012)Mac Pro (some early 2008 and 2009 models)
GPUsIntel HD Graphics 3000 and 4000Various NVIDIA GPUsVarious AMD Radeon 5000 and 6000-series GPUsNVIDIA GeForce and Quadro desktop GPUs
DriversIntel graphics driver 15.28.8.64.2875NVIDIA Verde notebook driver 306.97AMD Catalyst 12.10 driverNVIDIA GeForce 306.97 driver; NVIDIA Quadro 307.32 driver
NotesNone. Intel's drivers aren't flashy but they're typically reliable.Your experience with this driver may vary. If you encounter crashes, try rolling back to an older version; my 2010 MacBook Air seems happiest with the 295.73 driver from February, 2012. Also note that, yes, iMacs and Mac Minis do tend to use laptop-class GPUs.If for whatever reason the 12.10 driver won't install (it seemed not to like my 2011 iMac), try the 12.8 version here. Older 2000, 3000, and 4000-series GPUs (most often found in 2007, 2008, and some 2009 and 2010-era iMacs) don't have official Windows 8 driver support; you can try the latest Windows 7 driver from here, or content yourself with the performance of the Boot Camp driver, which will probably be fine for these older GPUs.These cards were only available as an upgrade option for 2008 Mac Pros, or if you've installed an upgraded graphics card in your Mac Pro at some point.

This list should be fairly comprehensive as it stands, but note that we can't possibly test all of the GPUs listed with the suggested drivers, and one person's rock-solid driver could be a buggy, crashing mess for someone else. If you've encountered particular issues with a driver and GPU combo, bring it up in the comments and see if someone can get you the answers you're looking for. With a bit of luck you'll be able to find a relatively current driver that brings your graphics performance up to its best possible level.

Retina support

One final footnote before we finish up here: how does Windows 8 handle the Retina Display currently shipping in some MacBook Pros? When we installed Windows 7 on a 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro, our experience with 200 percent scaling was hit-or-miss, but Windows 8 is supposed to improve Windows' scaling for use with screens of many different pixel densities.

On the desktop, things haven't changed that much. Many of the same issues we had in Windows 7 persist: some icons and text looks great, other graphics (including the mouse pointer) look pretty bad. The biggest issue is still with consistency—different applications have vastly different behaviors, and while some applications look just great, others are blurry messes (or, worse, choose to ignore the scaling settings altogether).

The behavior is slightly better for Metro apps. Every one of those I used, from the built-in Mail and Calendar apps to the New York Times and Kindle apps, looked just fine scaled up, though that doesn't mean every app you use will be that way—the Metro version of Chrome, for example, gave me a scaled-up scroll bar but chose to render pages at the same scaling level as before.

Conclusions: Who needs official support?

Fix The Boot Camp Problem In Macs With Optical Drives

The variety of Mac configurations out there make this sort of thing an inexact science, but in our experience you shouldn't have problems running Windows 8 on your Macs if you really want to. Official support will smooth over some of the rough edges in the experience, including lack of function key overlays and old, old graphics drivers, but Windows 8's compatibility with software and drivers made for Windows 7 should serve Mac users well here.

If you own Intel-based Macs, you can run OS X and Windows on one machine. In fact, it’s been possible to run Windows on a Mac for some time — with agonizing limitations. Near-extinct Mac models were loaded with Virtual PC emulation software could do Windows, too, but the program was painfully slow. Even if you find an old copy of the software, it won’t work with any current Macs.

Boot Camp software from Apple shook up the computing public upon its apocalyptic arrival in April 2006. Boot Camp graduated from beta, or near-finished, status with the arrival of Leopard. Boot Camp Assistant software is stored in the Utilities folder inside the Applications folder.

Boot Camp itself is free. You have to supply your own single-disc or downloadable full-install version of Windows; an upgrade disc won’t cut it.

Fix The Boot Camp Problem In Macs With Optical Drivers

It’s also important to note that you can use a 64-bit version of Windows, Windows 7 (Home Premium, Professional, or Ultimate), Windows 8, or Windows 8.1. Consult Apple support to see which Mac models are compatible with which versions of Windows. In its current incarnation, Boot Camp isn’t compatible with 32-bit versions of Windows.

Other requirements follow:

  • An Intel Mac with OS X version 10.6 or later

  • At least 2GB of RAM and 20GB of available space on the Mac’s storage drive that you want to donate to Windows

  • A blank CD or USB storage device that you’ll use for Windows software drivers

If you don’t run into snags, the entire installation should take about an hour.

Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 are optimized for a touchscreen environment, though you can use it with a standard mouse and keyboard. For now, Macs don’t support touchscreen computing.

To install Windows 8 via Boot Camp, you still must have a legitimate Windows 8 license from Microsoft and a Win8 installation disc, assuming that you have an optical drive. If you don’t have an optical drive, you may be able to create a Windows installer from an ISO file downloaded from Microsoft on a USB flash drive that’s 8GB or larger.

Because snags are possible, back up all your important information on the Mac’s startup disk.

Basic training

Following are the basic steps to get through Boot Camp:

  1. Run Boot Camp Assistant (in the Utilities folder inside the Applications folder) to make sure that you have the latest firmware on your computer and to install any support software from Apple that you might need.

    You’ll find any updates at Apple support. If you’re using a portable computer, make sure to connect the power adapter. You will also be given the option to create a Windows 7 (or later version) install disk for which you’ll need a USB flash drive and an ISO image downloaded from Apple.

  2. Follow the prompts in Boot Camp Assistant to create a partition for Windows.

    You’re essentially carving out an area of your hard drive for the Windows operating system,. This partition must be at least 30GB and can swell to the total free disk space on hand minus 30GB. If you don’t plan on doing much in Windows, keep the partition small.

    Drag the divider to set the partitions for both OS X and Windows, or click Divide Equally to make equal partitions. You can’t resize a Windows partition after creating it, though you can replace it with a larger Windows partition.

    If you have a Mac Pro with more than one internal hard drive, you can select which drive to partition. If any of this makes you nervous, know that you can remove the Windows partition later and go back to a single-partition Mac.

  3. Insert the Windows CD or a USB flash drive with the Windows ISO file and then click Start Installation.

    If you exited Boot Camp Assistant before installing Windows, open it again, choose Start the Windows Installer, and click Continue.

  4. When you’re asked to choose the Windows partition, select the partition that says BOOTCAMP.

    You may have to scroll down to see it.

    Don’t erase any partitions that you see or create a new partition here. Failure to heed this warning could wipe out your entire Mac OS X startup disk.

  5. (Optional) If you see a listing for Drive Options, click it; otherwise, proceed to Step 6.

  6. Reformat the partition by using the Windows installer: Click Format.

    You’re using the reliable and secure NTFS file system, but you won’t be able to save files to Windows from Mac OS X, at least not without a techie workaround.

  7. Follow the onscreen instructions to finish installing Windows.

    Boot Camp 5.1 includes several Mac drivers so that Windows will recognize your trackpad, Thunderbolt, USB 3.0, the iSight (or FaceTime) camera, the Eject key on the Mac keyboard, networking, audio, graphics, and so on.

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    A Boot Camp Control Panel for Windows and an Apple Boot Camp system-tray item will be added.

As with any new Windows computer, Microsoft requires that you activate your Windows software within 30 days.

Switching operating systems

You can go back and forth between OS X and Windows on your Mac, but you can’t run both operating systems simultaneously under Boot Camp. Instead, you have to boot one operating system or the other — thus, the name Boot Camp.

Restart your Mac, and hold down the Option key until icons for each operating system appear onscreen. Highlight Windows or Macintosh HD, and click the arrow to launch the operating system of choice for this session.

If you want OS X or Windows to boot every time, choose app → System Preferences, click Startup Disk, and choose the OS you want to launch by default.

You can perform the same function in Windows by clicking the Boot Camp system-tray icon and selecting the Boot Camp Control Panel. Click either the Macintosh HD or Windows icon, depending on your startup preference.

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