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Old Jan 29, 2013, 04:07 PM   #1
Knuckleheadz
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Installing Win7 via BootCamp on new late 2012 iMac

Hi guys,

First time I have setup dual boot on any Mac since I am finally doing away with my beige box and using my iMac for Windows as well as OS X.

Here is my intended setup:

Seagate GoFlex Thunderbolt Caddy + SSD
  • Partition 1 = Macintosh HD
  • Partition 2 = Audio Samples

Internal WD 1TB Drive
  • Partition 1 = Projects (HFS) - 300GB
  • Partition 2 = Data (HFS) - 500GB (ish)
  • Partition 3 = Windows (FAT32) - 80GB

Can I install Windows on this last partition?

I tried to run BootCamp Assistant but it said something about the disk not being one single partition... I don't know which disk it is talking about since both were partitioned!

I thought I would just be able to specify the installation partition.

I have already created my USB boot image with my Win7 ISO + additional WindowsSupport files.... Can I just boot from it and point it at the Windows Partition, format it as NTFS and then let it install?

My only concern is that I have read somewhere about multiple partitions and the Mac's ability to identify the Windows one.... or maybe I just didn't quite understand!

Hoping you can help?

Thanks
Jon
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 04:47 PM   #2
AstralShane
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Knuckleheadz View Post
Hi guys,

First time I have setup dual boot on any Mac since I am finally doing away with my beige box and using my iMac for Windows as well as OS X.

Here is my intended setup:

Seagate GoFlex Thunderbolt Caddy + SSD
  • Partition 1 = Macintosh HD
  • Partition 2 = Audio Samples

Internal WD 1TB Drive
  • Partition 1 = Projects (HFS) - 300GB
  • Partition 2 = Data (HFS) - 500GB (ish)
  • Partition 3 = Windows (FAT32) - 80GB

Can I install Windows on this last partition?

I tried to run BootCamp Assistant but it said something about the disk not being one single partition... I don't know which disk it is talking about since both were partitioned!

I thought I would just be able to specify the installation partition.

I have already created my USB boot image with my Win7 ISO + additional WindowsSupport files.... Can I just boot from it and point it at the Windows Partition, format it as NTFS and then let it install?

My only concern is that I have read somewhere about multiple partitions and the Mac's ability to identify the Windows one.... or maybe I just didn't quite understand!

Hoping you can help?

Thanks
Jon
If you've already partitioned the drive, then you don't need to run "Bootcamp Assistant". That app is just there for people who don't want to screw up their drive when partitioning it. (Bootcamp Assistant does it nearly automatically).

Try rebooting and hold the option key. If just your OS X partition and the recovery partition show up, then OS X would be able to see your Windows partition.

If you don't want to take the risk of OS X not being able to see the Windows partition then just install rEFit (http://refit.sourceforge.net) which allows your Mac to "see" multiple Operating Systems (you also don't have to hold the option key to bring up the boot menu).
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 05:31 PM   #3
Knuckleheadz
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Location: United Kingodm
Thanks for the reply AstralShane,

So I have pressed the Option key on start up and I can see my OS X, Recovery Partition and the USB drive that I plugged in which was created by BootCamp Assistant.

I selected Windows from the USB drive but it loads the Windows Files then sticks on saying "Starting Windows", it doesn't appear to go in to the installation procedure.

What am I doing wrong?

Thanks
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 06:17 PM   #4
Quad5Ny
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EDIT: Sigh, I wrote all that for nothing. I didn't see you had the Macintosh HD running in a ThunderBolt enclosure. Disregard this, I'm a idiot.



Basic Info:

When installing Windows on a Mac, Windows needs to be on one of the first 4 partitions.

This is because while Apple computers use GUID Partition Tables, the Boot Camp BIOS compatibility module still boots off of the Master Boot Record (MBR).

The MBR can only hold 4 partitions which (for most users) are:
    • 200MB EFI (FAT32) - 200MB
    • Mac OS X (HFS+)
    • Recovery HD (Apple_Boot) - 620MB
    • Boot Camp (FAT32 or NTFS)

---

How to get everything working:

Before you start make sure when creating the Windows partition to format it as FAT32, this lets Disk Utility know to write out a Hybrid MBR (you can re-format it as NTFS in the Windows installer). Also you can't have 2 partitions for Projects and Data because that's more than 4 partitions, Sorry.

    1. Backup Everything
    2. Delete Projects, Data and Windows Partitions
    3. Copy the Recovery HD partition to a ThumbDrive
    4. Delete the Recovery HD partition on your Computer (Scroll Down to "How do I Delete the Recovery Partition?")
    5. Create 2 New Partitions: "Windows" and "Projects & Data" (Ideally Windows should be first because as you get closer to the end of the drive its slower)

Last edited by Quad5Ny; Jan 29, 2013 at 06:26 PM.
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 06:30 PM   #5
Quad5Ny
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Try unplugging the ThunderBolt SSD enclosure.
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 07:23 PM   #6
Knuckleheadz
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Thanks Quad5Ny,

I've removed the Recovery Partition after making a copy of it and (reluctantly) removed one of my partitons...

But now when I boot from the USB I see the Windows partition that I created in Disk 0 Partition 3, selecting it tells me I have to format as NTFS, which I do from the Advanced Options, this then gives the following error:

"Setup was unable to create a new system partition or locate an existing system partition."

I removed my external SSD too so as not to confuse things further...

Stumped... and its late here in the UK

----------

Hi Quad5Ny,

Something just occurred to me...

Why did I delete the recovery partition since I want to install Windows on my internal 1TB drive and the recovery partition would have been created on my SSD drive??

My Mac is brand new so I am happy to trash the whole thing in order to get this working...

HOWEVER, I bought an SSD specifically for moving and dealing with large audio files within Logic/Ableton Live and I want Windows installed on the slower internal disk
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 07:34 PM   #7
Knuckleheadz
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OK... now its installing!

as well as my SSD external I forgot I had a USB 3.0 drive plugged in with all my software on!!! Arrrgggghhhhhhhhhh

Thanks for your help Quad5Ny, I ended up getting BootCamp Assistant to partition the 1TB drive and restart.

Tomorrow I'll go back and re-install OS X so I can get my Recovery Partition back (I assume that's OK as it's a different disk?)

Thanks
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 11:42 PM   #8
Quad5Ny
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>_< For whatever reason I thought you had OS X installed on the 1TB internal. After I noticed the mistake (9min after the post) I put a "Edit" at the top telling you to disregard my suggestion.

I never meant for you to erase the recovery partition on your SSD, I was telling you to delete it on the 1TB. I'm really sorry for the confusion and you having to reinstall OS X. The thing about 4 partitions (on the 1TB) still stands though, Windows won't boot otherwise.

Reinstalling OS X will get you the recovery partition back (although I've never tried installing OS X onto a ThunderBolt drive).


P.S. Again I'm really really sorry you have to re-install OS X, when I give advise I try not to make things worse.
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Old Jan 30, 2013, 02:02 AM   #9
Knuckleheadz
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Hey... no worries Quad5Ny - its all part of my learning curve for me and you helped me understand how it should work so I'm certainly not blaming you for what has happened...

Like I said I'm happy to trash it since I only got my iMac yesterday and the first thing I did was install OS X on an external drive.... I've not lost anything at all really

Its all good and thanks for your help

Jon

----------

One question then Quad5Ny....

Since the 4 Partition restriction applies I should be able to have the following partition configuration on my 1TB drive:
  • Projects
  • Data
  • Windows

Are there any hidden partitions on that disk that would affect me having this? Since that "should" be 3 partitions now - still 1 inside the restriction.
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Old Jan 30, 2013, 02:08 PM   #10
Quad5Ny
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That list looks good but keep in mind there is 1 hidden EFI partition. The EFI System partition is part of the GUID partition table (GPT) spec and Apple uses it as a staging area for Firmware updates, it should always be the first partition on a GPT disk.

You can check this by opening up a Terminal window and typing "diskutil list":
Thumb resize.
For some reason while I was typing my first reply I thought you had OS X on that 1TB drive, which as you can see would have added 2 extra partitions (a total of 6).

---

Since you deleted the Recovery Partition on your SSD (and not the 1TB) make sure to grow the Macintosh HD partition to take up the space the Recovery Partition was in:
Thumb resize.
You don't have to do this, but if you don't there will be 650MB of free space in-between Macintosh HD and Audio Samples.

---

One final thing, if you don't want to re-install OS X you really don't have to. That ThumbDrive you made has almost the same functionality as the Recovery Partition that was on your hard drive. The only thing you won't be able to do is use full disk encryption on the SSD (FileVault 2).
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Old Jan 30, 2013, 03:36 PM   #11
Knuckleheadz
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Hi Quad5Ny,

Thanks again for helping... Windows seems fine now on my 1TB drive with 2 other partitions.

I'm just re-installing OS X since I hadn't installed anything or configured anything and I bet I'll lose the USB stick that I created the recovery partition on JUST when I need it

No drama.... It's how I want it and your explanations helped me understand what was going on and what I could and couldn't do.

Cheers
Jon
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Old Jan 30, 2013, 05:06 PM   #12
Quad5Ny
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Awesome, Good Luck with everything.

That 4 partition limit also only apply's to Hybrid MBR (Boot Camp) and normal MBR drives. If the drive is a normal OS X (GPT) drive without Windows, you can have as many partitions you want on it.
Thumb resize.
Remember never use Windows partitioning tools on a drive that has been "Boot Camp'ed". If a drive does not have a Boot Camp install on it, then you can partition it wherever you want.
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