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How to Install Windows on a Mac

How to Install Windows on a Mac

MacOS is a very capable operating system. You can use a lot of productivity apps like Adobe products, Microsoft Office, MacOS’s native apps, and more. However, sometimes Windows is still needed for some tasks like business-specific apps, gaming, and other applications. A lot of people have trouble installing Windows on Mac but it really isn’t that difficult. In this tutorial we’ll show you how to install Windows on a Mac.

Step 1: Get the prerequisite tools

To run Windows, Mac uses software called Boot Camp. Macs come with Boot Camp pre-installed, which you can find if you go to Finder, then Utilities. Before you get started you should check this website and make sure your software is up to date. Older versions may contain bugs that could complicate things.

You will also need to get a hold of a Windows installation disc. This tutorial works for at least the last three versions of Windows, which are Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1. You can buy official discs from retail stores like Best Buy, or from online retailers like Newegg. If you have the software, you can also create your own install disc using this tutorial.

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Step 2: Run the Boot Camp Assistant

how to install windows on mac

    As I mentioned above, go to Finder, then Utilities, and double click the Boot Camp Assistant. It may ask you for your administrator credentials like your user name and password. Fill those in where appropriate. Then it’s a matter of following some instructions as the Assistant walks you through the early steps of the process.

    During this process you will likely be asked to Download the Windows support software for this Mac. If prompted, say yes. These are the drivers required for Windows to work properly. Downloading the drivers can take a very long time and be rather frustrating. The good news is the process will automatically put them on a CD, DVD, or flash drive for you so you don’t have to do that manually.

    Step 3: Partition your hard drive

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    how to install windows on mac

      The next step is to choose how much space you’ll give to Windows. This is determined by a slider. Grab the center and move it back and forth until you have a properly sized partition. There is no standard size for Windows although you should know that Windows 7 requires a minimum of 16GB, with Windows 8 and 8.1 taking about the same.

      There are two things to keep in mind. The space you give to Windows will be subtracted from your OSX partition. So if you have a 500GB hard drive and you give 100GB to Windows, OSX will only have 400GB remaining. It’s also important that you give Windows enough space for the applications you need. It’s better to overestimate and have extra space than underestimate and run out of space because re-partitioning hard drives can be difficult.

      Once you have selected a size, click the Partition button. It’ll take a little while for your computer to partition, so if it seems like it is taking a while, just be patient.

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      Step 4: Begin the Windows installation

      how to install windows on mac

        Place your Windows install media into your Mac and click the Install button. Your Mac will boot into the usual Windows installation screen. Follow each step. When you get to the screen where it asks which partition you want to install on, perform the following steps:

        1. Click on the BOOTCAMP partition.
        2. Click the Drive Options (advanced) button.
        3. Choose format.

        Other than that, just follow the prompts and once you’re finished, Windows will begin to install. If you have any unusual issues, check here for the in-depth steps in installing Windows.

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        Step 5: Install drivers

        how to install windows on mac

          This is not the most difficult part of the process but it is the part that has the potential to have the most problems. In this step you’ll be installing the drivers required to make your Mac work in Windows. Earlier in this process you downloaded the Windows drivers and put them on a flash drive. For this step, you should be booted into Windows.

          Insert the flash drive, open it, open the folder called Boot Camp, and double click the Setup.exe. During the install process you may see various errors and warnings. These are normal. Click to proceed through them. Once done, your drivers should work. A reboot will be required.

          Step 6: Clean up and enjoy

          At this point you should test your new installation to make sure everything works properly. If you find any issues, Apple has an FAQ on how to use Boot Camp that you can find here. At this point, when you turn your Mac on, press the Option key to choose whether you want to boot into Windows or Mac. That’s it, you’re done!

          Featured photo credit: MacMint via macmint.com

          More by this author

          Joseph Hindy

          A writer, editor, and YouTuber who likes to share about technology and lifestyle tips.

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          Last Updated on February 15, 2019

          7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

          7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

          Now that 2011 is well underway and most people have fallen off the bandwagon when it comes to their New Year’s resolutions (myself included), it’s a good time to step back and take an honest look at our habits and the goals that we want to achieve.

          Something that I have learned over the past few years is that if you track something, be it your eating habits, exercise, writing time, work time, etc. you become aware of the reality of the situation. This is why most diet gurus tell you to track what you eat for a week so you have an awareness of the of how you really eat before you start your diet and exercise regimen.

          Tracking daily habits and progress towards goals is another way to see reality and create a way for you clearly review what you have accomplished over a set period of time. Tracking helps motivate you too; if I can make a change in my life and do it once a day for a period of time it makes me more apt to keep doing it.

          So, if you have some goals and habits in mind that need tracked, all you need is a tracking tool. Today we’ll look at 7 different tools to help you keep track of your habits and goals.

          Joe’s Goals

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            Joe’s Goals is a web-based tool that allows users to track their habits and goals in an easy to use interface. Users can add as many goals/habits as they want and also check multiple times per day for those “extra productive days”. Something that is unique about Joe’s Goals is the way that you can keep track of negative habits such as eating out, smoking, etc. This can help you visualize the good things that you are doing as well as the negative things that you are doing in your life.

            Joe’s Goals is free with a subscription version giving you no ads and the “latest version” for $12 a year.

            Daytum

              Daytum

              is an in depth way of counting things that you do during the day and then presenting them to you in many different reports and groups. With Daytum you can add several different items to different custom categories such as work, school, home, etc. to keep track of your habits in each focus area of your life.

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              Daytum is extremely in depth and there are a ton of settings for users to tweak. There is a free version that is pretty standard, but if you want more features and unlimited items and categories you’ll need Daytum Plus which is $4 a month.

              Excel or Numbers

                If you are the spreadsheet number cruncher type and the thought of using someone else’s idea of how you should track your habits turns you off, then creating your own Excel/Numbers/Google spreadsheet is the way to go. Not only do you have pretty much limitless ways to view, enter, and manipulate your goal and habit data, but you have complete control over your stuff and can make it private.

                What’s nice about spreadsheets is you can create reports and can customize your views in any way you see fit. Also, by using Dropbox, you can keep your tracker sheets anywhere you have a connection.

                Evernote

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                  I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.

                  Evernote is free with a premium version available.

                  Access or Bento

                    If you like the idea of creating your own tracker via Excel or Numbers, you may be compelled to get even more creative with database tools like Access for Windows or Bento for Mac. These tools allow you to set up relational databases and even give you the option of setting up custom interfaces to interact with your data. Access is pretty powerful for personal database applications, and using it with other MS products, you can come up with some pretty awesome, in depth analysis and tracking of your habits and goals.

                    Bento is extremely powerful and user friendly. Also with Bento you can get the iPhone and iPad app to keep your data anywhere you go.

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                    You can check out Access and the Office Suite here and Bento here.

                    Analog Bonus: Pen and Paper

                    All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.

                    Conclusion

                    I can’t necessarily recommend which tool is the best for tracking your personal habits and goals, as all of them have their quirks. What I can do however (yes, it’s a bit of a cop-out) is tell you that the tool to use is whatever works best for you. I personally keep track of my daily habits and personal goals with a combo Evernote for input and then a Google spreadsheet for long-term tracking.

                    What this all comes down to is not how or what tool you use, but finding what you are comfortable with and then getting busy with creating lasting habits and accomplishing short- and long-term goals.

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