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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.

cheapest option for windows on Mac


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pepene

 
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Hi all,

This might have been discussed here before so apologies if its a repeat.

I am looking for the cheapest way to run windows on a Macbook pro Ive just bought. Just need to run MS office 2007 and 3-4 other software. Not wanting to spend loads so kindly suggest the 2 software I need for this basic purpose and a suitable antivirus to go with it.

Cheers friends.

Pep.
Fodge

 
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Run boot camp assistant (applications > utilities > boot camp assistant)
That will add a 2nd partition on which to install windows. Then you just need the OS and any sw you want. Can't recommend antivirus sw as I'm a Mac user
Fodge

 
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In other words it doesn't cost anything to run windows except the cost of windows. (real and metaphorical)
SammySlim

 
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Depending on the software you want to run, you may not need to use Boot Camp - you might be better off with Windows in a virtual machine. Sun's VirtualBox is free - with a VM, you can run Windows apps in a window or standalone while also running OSX. But if you plan on doing gaming or other applications (e.g., video editing) that require best graphics performance, you're better off in boot camp. MS Office, surfing, remote access, etc., all work great in a virtual machine. To use boot camp, you need to reboot into windows to run your windows programs. In a virtual machine, you just launch the virtual machine while your Mac apps are still going.

For Windows itself, you'll need a full retail or System Builder OEM version of Windows under Boot Camp (these will also work under VirtualBox). They can be had cheapest at places like newegg.com. Note that branded OEM disk windows versions (e.g., the Windows disk that came with a Dell, HP, Sony, etc.) will NOT work in this scenario.

Cheers
pepene

 
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Thanks chaps especially Sammy slim. The 2 primary software I want to run are Penny perfect (its an invoice software and the other is MS office-I presume its better to get office for Mac then?)

The VM you are talking about (is Sun's Virtualbox such a software-I shall google and find out) , can I run this windows software penny perfect on it? I dont mind rebooting as I only use this software 3 times a week.

Regards

Pep.

p.s. do I still need to buy Windows?
SammySlim

 
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Unfortunately, yes you do need to buy Windows. I am not familiar with Penny Perfect but if it is invoicing software, you won't need full graphics hardware access and a virtual machine will work nicely. I stress that because installing Windows in Boot Camp is actually a complex process. Most of what we deal with here on the forum are those installations gone wrong. Virtual machine installations, on the other hand, are much simpler and have fewer issues overall. But it's really your choice.

VirtualBox is software you install on your Mac first. That software will create the virtual machine for you once you have a Windows disk ready to go. There are other options for virtual machines (VMWare Fusion and Parallels Desktop, for example), but they cost about $50+ USD so don't meet your "cheapest" criteria. I use Fusion (and prefer the interface) but they all work well.

Or you can do boot camp. If you choose to boot camp, definitely print out the Apple Boot Camp guide (online at Apple support) and follow it TO THE LETTER. Parts are not intuitive. You have been warned ...

And either way, please read the rest of the posts in this sticky and the other one on this forum. Both will give you most of the info you need to do this succesfully. Any specific issues, come on back.

One last thing: on any Windows installation, you will need to install an anti-virus program. My best suggestion currently is Microsoft Security Essentials. Free and speedy, it does the job. Other free options are AVG Free but its gotten a bit bloated in recent years. Still works ok. The good news is that if you pick up any viruses on your Windows installation (either Boot Camp or virtual machine) they won't affect your Mac OS side of the equation.

Good luck
mazthespark

 
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could i install the operating system, vm and my windows software on a flash drive or external harddrive?? If i was not going to be connecting to the internet while using the windows os would i still need anti virus or am i better of having it to be on safe side? also whats the best os to use? was a big fan of xp before i switched over to mac
SammySlim

 
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No. Must be internal drive for these to work and yes you will need anti-virus. The AV software is free, not a big deal, it will be fine on your HD and your Mac side is not at risk.
pepene

 
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Thanks guys, my mate said he would lend me a Windows xp pro sp3 cd image with all the necessary tweaks to make it run as autheticated copy. will this run fine on MBP?
SammySlim

 
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I believe that would be in violation of the license agreements; we don't support that kind of thing here. Sorry.
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Sammy is correct. That would violate the MS EULA. You need to purchase your own copy of Windows. Both NewEgg and Amazon sell an OEM system builders version of XP SP3. Check with them. And this thread is closed.

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