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Running Windows (or anything else) on your Mac Discussion of Classic or running Windows, Linux and other OSes on the Mac.

Install Windows 7 from ext. HD?


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cad2blender

 
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I have a mbp with a glitchy super drive, it will usually give me an error halfway through a movie, burn, or install disc and it does not want to read my windows 7 dvd. I want to install windows 7 using bootcamp (I have snow leopard) and be able to dual boot. Is there a way that I can install windows 7 from an external drive? I have an external drive that I use for backing up and I'm thinking that I can create a partition in the ext. HD and mount/extract the install dvd on there and boot up from the ext. HD and voila be able to install win 7... is this possible? I don't want to loose my data on my ext. HD that is already there by creating the partition, will I lose it? any other ideas? thanks in advance
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chscag

 
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You need to be able to boot your machine with Windows 7 in order to install it via Boot Camp. There are other ways to install Windows but they all require booting the machine. If you were to buy an external DVD drive, that would not work either because drivers are not loaded until after Windows boots up.

There are plenty of articles floating around the net (use Google) that show how to install Windows using a hard drive. However, none of them mention Boot Camp, so you would need to take that into consideration.

You might want to think about replacing your superdrive instead.

Regards.
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cad2blender

 
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Hold on a second, I just remember something. I don't even have to use bootcamp to install it I can simply just partition my internal drive using disk utility or boot camp, mount my win 7 dvd onto my ext HD, boot from the image that was mounted from my ext HD of win 7 and it should work right? Then install the drivers from boot camp. Or is this not going to work. Thanks for the reply by the way.
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chscag

 
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How are you going to mount your Windows 7 DVD on an external hard drive without a working DVD drive?

However, what you might want to do is borrow a PC or another machine that has a working DVD drive and burn your Windows 7 DVD to an ISO. You would be able to mount the ISO.

Let us know.

Regards.
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cad2blender

 
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ok I used my friends PC to burn the DVD as an iso and transferred it to my laptop. Now since I got the iso here on my desktop ready to go and everything I can just mount it to my ext HD, boot from there install and problem solved... correct? If this is possible should I create a partition or just mount it straight onto my ext HD (formatted HFS+ journaled by the way) I got a feeling I should create a partition, not sure though. If I create a partition, after I'm done installing and everything can I restore my ext HD to how it was without loosing all my backups that are currently on there? Again...thanks in advance!
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You're going to have to create a partition for Windows 7 first. Once you have the partition created, follow the procedures that are given in this LINK. Note that you'll need a USB flash drive of at least 3 GB or larger.

The tricky part is creating a partition on your internal hard drive for the installation of Windows. Note that installing Windows on any external hard drive is not officially supported. However, with some googling you can find procedures for doing that too.

Regards.
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I just found another possible solution to your problem of installing Windows without a working Superdrive. This method seems to be the best of the bunch.

Give it a try. The entire copied procedure follows after the asterisks.

*********************************************


Install Windows in Boot Camp despite a defective SuperDrive

Tue, Mar 2 2010 at 7:30AM PST Contributed by: Obi

My 2007 DC MacBook (running 10.6.2) has an internal SuperDrive that is defective, which hampered my Boot Camp installation. 2br I set up the MacBook up for dual boot with the Boot Camp assistant, and I wanted to install Windows using a bare internal drive (Samsung) connected to USB thru a USB2.0 to SATA/IDE cable. The process failed after restart -- it stuck on the boot screen, displaying an Apple icon with (sometimes) a flashing question mark.

Looking for a solution I came a across rEfit, which is a kind of boot manager for EFI-equipped (Intel) Macs.

Install the program and restart the MacBook twice. After the second restart, the rEfit boot menu should be visible. When I connected an external CD/DVD drive that contained a bootable Windows CD, that disk showed up as bootable. You selected the Windows installation disk and it continued with the installation process.

For me it saved the day; I was able to install Windows XP in Boot Camp using this method.

************************************

Let us know how it went.

Regards.
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cad2blender

 
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That's interesting I gotta try that out this weekend, thanks so much for the help!
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