Go Back   MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > Desktops > Mac Pro

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old Dec 27, 2012, 05:43 PM   #1
ScottishCaptain
macrumors 6502a
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Windows 8 and USB booting

I haven't seen this confirmed anywhere, so I figured I'd be the first one to do it here incase anyone else is searching for a relevant answer.

If you follow this guide to the letter:

http://tweaks.com/windows/52279/how-...-go-usb-drive/

Windows 8 is capable of booting natively, from EFI, on the Mac Pro. This means that the EFI partition shows up as "EFI Boot" under the OS chooser (holding the ALT key when you reboot), and you can select it and boot Windows 8 from an external device.

Everything works OOTB on the 2010/2012 Mac Pro. Bluetooth needs drivers (which you can extract from Apple's bootcamp drivers, or just leave it alone- the Mac Pro Bluetooth card emulates a USB HID keyboard and mouse with the devices you used to select the OS from the chooser screen if you don't install the BT chipset drivers), and the AMD Catalyst drivers should be installed for best performance- but other then that it absolutely flies, even off a USB disk drive.

This is NOT bootcamp. Bootcamp runs through a CSM module under EFI that allows one to boot MBR-based operating systems from a legacy partition. Windows 8 x64 natively supports EFI booting from a USB flash key or USB disk drive on damned near every recent Macintosh I've tried (2012 iMac, 2012 Macbook Pro, 2010 Mac Pro) flawlessly, which has nothing to do with Bootcamp at all.

So if you're stuck with a RAID card that only really works in OS X and you don't want to mess with that, then this is a totally viable alternative to run Windows on your Mac Pro.

-SC
__________________
2010 Mac Pro (MacPro5,1), 2*2.93ghz, 64GB, 4x2TB, Apple RAID Card, 5970 GPU, 2xSD, Eizo CG276W
ScottishCaptain is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 27, 2012, 06:44 PM   #2
ActionableMango
macrumors 68040
 
ActionableMango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
I don't see what's new. I've never had to use Bootcamp. AFAIK, all Bootcamp Assistant does is partition the drive and let you create bootcamp driver disc.

I just install Windows from the DVD directly to its own HDD just like I would on any generic PC. The drivers I just get from the Internet. Works with Windows 7 x64.
ActionableMango is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 27, 2012, 07:39 PM   #3
monkeybagel
macrumors 6502a
 
monkeybagel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: United States
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScottishCaptain View Post
I haven't seen this confirmed anywhere, so I figured I'd be the first one to do it here incase anyone else is searching for a relevant answer.

If you follow this guide to the letter:

http://tweaks.com/windows/52279/how-...-go-usb-drive/

Windows 8 is capable of booting natively, from EFI, on the Mac Pro. This means that the EFI partition shows up as "EFI Boot" under the OS chooser (holding the ALT key when you reboot), and you can select it and boot Windows 8 from an external device.

Everything works OOTB on the 2010/2012 Mac Pro. Bluetooth needs drivers (which you can extract from Apple's bootcamp drivers, or just leave it alone- the Mac Pro Bluetooth card emulates a USB HID keyboard and mouse with the devices you used to select the OS from the chooser screen if you don't install the BT chipset drivers), and the AMD Catalyst drivers should be installed for best performance- but other then that it absolutely flies, even off a USB disk drive.

This is NOT bootcamp. Bootcamp runs through a CSM module under EFI that allows one to boot MBR-based operating systems from a legacy partition. Windows 8 x64 natively supports EFI booting from a USB flash key or USB disk drive on damned near every recent Macintosh I've tried (2012 iMac, 2012 Macbook Pro, 2010 Mac Pro) flawlessly, which has nothing to do with Bootcamp at all.

So if you're stuck with a RAID card that only really works in OS X and you don't want to mess with that, then this is a totally viable alternative to run Windows on your Mac Pro.

-SC
FYI - It does not work on a 2010 Mac mini. Setup gets to the point where Installing Devices and it reboots and setup restarts stating that an error occurred and that Setup needs to be re-run. This was with Windows 8 Enterprise x64. So far I haven't found a workaround, but I like Windows 8 so little I haven't put a great deal of effort into it.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by ActionableMango View Post
I don't see what's new. I've never had to use Bootcamp. AFAIK, all Bootcamp Assistant does is partition the drive and let you create bootcamp driver disc.

I just install Windows from the DVD directly to its own HDD just like I would on any generic PC. The drivers I just get from the Internet. Works with Windows 7 x64.
There is in fact a difference. You know when you have a non OS X disc in the drive and hold Option to boot from the optical drive, you will always see it labeled "Windows?" If you select this, the Macintosh changes the way it presents the partition table to the OS to support/fake an MBR disc.

When selecting EFI Boot, it does not do this and presents the disc as a GPT disc and Windows installs in EFI mode using the EFI partition and boot manager.
monkeybagel is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 27, 2012, 07:50 PM   #4
ActionableMango
macrumors 68040
 
ActionableMango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by monkeybagel View Post
There is in fact a difference. You know when you have a non OS X disc in the drive and hold Option to boot from the optical drive, you will always see it labeled "Windows?" If you select this, the Macintosh changes the way it presents the partition table to the OS to support/fake an MBR disc.

When selecting EFI Boot, it does not do this and presents the disc as a GPT disc and Windows installs in EFI mode using the EFI partition and boot manager.
Very informative, thank you!
ActionableMango is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 27, 2012, 08:25 PM   #5
ScottishCaptain
Thread Starter
macrumors 6502a
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by monkeybagel View Post
If you select this, the Macintosh changes the way it presents the partition table to the OS to support/fake an MBR disc.
Actually, it doesn't.

Bootcamp.app (the utility) simply creates a hybrid GPT/MBR partition table. Both are available to the OS running under "Bootcamp", that's how Apple's Bootcamp HFS+ drivers work (which allow you to read and write to your OS X partition). Only the MBR bit is used when booting a legacy OS though.

The other half of Bootcamp (the bit inside your system firmware) is actually a chunk of code (called a "CSM", or Compatibility Support Module) that emulates a bog standard (and highly limited) PC BIOS complete with a VGA BIOS to drive your graphics card. This PC BIOS takes over the computer hardware after EFI has initialized the hardware and launched the CSM, and is what loads up a boot loader off an MBR-based partition table.

Under EFI or the CSM, the operating system has the same direct access to the disk drive irregardless. There is no tomfoolery that changes how the partition table is presented to the OS, it's just that the MBR-based partition table is required by the emulated PC BIOS to boot such an operating system.

EFI booting is totally different and more direct. There's no emulation layer of any kind. EFI loads an executable off a FAT32 partition (or HFS+ in the case of Mac OS X) and runs it, this loads and starts the OS kernel, which then can mount whatever filesystem your OS uses.

-SC
__________________
2010 Mac Pro (MacPro5,1), 2*2.93ghz, 64GB, 4x2TB, Apple RAID Card, 5970 GPU, 2xSD, Eizo CG276W
ScottishCaptain is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 27, 2012, 10:32 PM   #6
monkeybagel
macrumors 6502a
 
monkeybagel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: United States
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScottishCaptain View Post
Actually, it doesn't.

Bootcamp.app (the utility) simply creates a hybrid GPT/MBR partition table. Both are available to the OS running under "Bootcamp", that's how Apple's Bootcamp HFS+ drivers work (which allow you to read and write to your OS X partition). Only the MBR bit is used when booting a legacy OS though.

The other half of Bootcamp (the bit inside your system firmware) is actually a chunk of code (called a "CSM", or Compatibility Support Module) that emulates a bog standard (and highly limited) PC BIOS complete with a VGA BIOS to drive your graphics card. This PC BIOS takes over the computer hardware after EFI has initialized the hardware and launched the CSM, and is what loads up a boot loader off an MBR-based partition table.

Under EFI or the CSM, the operating system has the same direct access to the disk drive irregardless. There is no tomfoolery that changes how the partition table is presented to the OS, it's just that the MBR-based partition table is required by the emulated PC BIOS to boot such an operating system.

EFI booting is totally different and more direct. There's no emulation layer of any kind. EFI loads an executable off a FAT32 partition (or HFS+ in the case of Mac OS X) and runs it, this loads and starts the OS kernel, which then can mount whatever filesystem your OS uses.

-SC
What causes, in some cases, for the Windows 7 installer to see all disks as GPT but a subsequent reboot to see it as MBR, and EFI boot is not selected in either instance?
monkeybagel is offline   0 Reply With Quote

Reply
MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > Desktops > Mac Pro

Tags
efi, mac pro, windows 8

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Similar Threads
thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Booting Windows from an External USB 3.0/TB drive? FluJunkie MacBook Pro 4 Jul 10, 2013 11:37 PM
Help!: Booting off recovery USB Marvin16 Mac mini 14 Jul 9, 2013 02:38 PM
Booting MacBook with Windows USB Disk Radiating MacBook Pro 3 Jan 19, 2013 04:25 PM
Booting From SSD (USB vs TB) Kirkle iMac 1 Dec 4, 2012 02:26 PM
Booting from USB drive? flashofthedark iMac 10 Aug 20, 2012 04:18 PM

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:51 AM.

Mac Rumors | Mac | iPhone | iPhone Game Reviews | iPhone Apps

Mobile Version | Fixed | Fluid | Fluid HD
Copyright 2002-2013, MacRumors.com, LLC