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Old Sep 1, 2012, 06:45 PM   #1
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How to configue MBA for potential Bootcamp use

So I'm almost certain I'll be buying a 2012 13" MBA next week rather than the ultrabooks I've been looking at. However, due to what I'm studying and the field I'm going into, there are some program which only work on Windows so I may have to install Windows 7 and use bootcamp to run these programs.

I was likely going to get the base 13" model but was thinking that if I'll be installing Windows, it may be better to upgrade some of the internals in the MBA when I buy it. At first I thought the obvious choice would be upgrading to the 256gb ssd so that I could create a large enough partition for windows. However, I've realized that with my current desktop (which has a 256gb hdd), I still have 45gb of space free after using this computer for almost 7 years. So seeing as how I don't store that much stuff, and would still have the desktop as a storage option, getting the larger ssd may not be worth it.

Thus I've been considering upgrading the RAM to 8gb instead, would this be a better choice? I figured that further versions of OS X may require more RAM as well and I plan on using this laptop for at least a few years.

(Note: I'm not considering the i7 upgrade as I don't do any video editing or software development (a rep at an Apple store recommended not upgrading this based on the usage I described). Also I don't think I can afford both the RAM and SSD upgrade so I'm trying to decide which would be the better option.)

Would windows 7 run well without the RAM or SSD upgrade though? What would be the optimal configuration without having to spend too much?

PS: I've found a local seller who is selling the 13' with a 256gb ssd for $1370 and claims it's sealed in box, is there any way to know that it is indeed the 256gb version without opening and booting it? That is should I decide on the ssd option...
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Old Sep 1, 2012, 07:40 PM   #2
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From what you've described, the RAM upgrade would be very beneficial.

Like you say, if you don't actually want to store that much data under the Windows partition of the MBA, 128GB SSD should be fine. However, the RAM upgrade on the Airs is not only the most cost effective (80 upgrade in the UK) but I believe will be the best single upgrade option going forward. This will keep your Mac as fresh and open to future software updates as possible, without spending the cash and going for the i7 processor.
2012 iMac 27" 3.4 GHz i7/16GB RAM/1TB Fusion Drive
2012 13" MacBook Air, 2GHz i7 Ivy Bridge, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD.
iPhone 5 64GB Black & Slate.
iPad mini 64GB Black & Slate.
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