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Install Bootcamp on an External Drive?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by bjdraw, Feb 5, 2008.

  1. macrumors 6502a

  2. macrumors 6502a

    One problem I just realized right off the bat is that with only one USB port and the USB Superdrive requirement to install bootcamp, will require a USB hub, assuming the USB Superdrive will work connected to a hub. I'm sure it'd at least need to be powered.
  3. macrumors regular

    this is a good question
  4. macrumors newbie

    MBA usb port is 3 times more powerful compared to standar PC/MAC

    It's a 1.5 Amp compared to 0.5 of the others.
    This, because of the superdrive. So, I don't think Hubs will be an issue
  5. macrumors regular

    but can the superdrive work off a hub?
  6. macrumors G5


    Bootcamp's only functions are:
    - Partition internal drive
    - Make driver disk (not sure about that in Leopard).

    On another intel mac, you can install windows on an external drive (don't activate, or get the corporate version without WGA), and when you reboot your MBA, hold option, windows should be available as an option.

    I am able to boot off Linux on USB thumbdrive and CD.
  7. macrumors newbie

    I have done this recently on my MacBook (CoreDuo) and it works fine. So yes, the external does work. What I would recommend is to follow the install guide on a regular MacBook through the CD Install. After you installed Windows through the blue screens, and before it restarts for the GUI install, switch computers and plug it into your MBA and finish the install from there. One recommendation is that you should use rEFIt for your boot options. It makes getting to the USB drive easy from your boot menu (plus, I couldn't boot from USB any other way... and I tried everything).

    Let me know if that makes sense or if it works.
  8. macrumors 6502a

    I'm going to try it, but I'm trying something else first.

    I have Bootcamp running on my MBP and I'd love to just transfer it over to an external drive. So I'm going to try that first. I started to dd the partition from my MBP internal drive to my USB external at lunch. I'll report back on how it turns out.

    I also read somewhere that others were manually creating 60MB boot partitions on the internal drive and then putting the system drive on the external disc. This might be a good compromise to removing the internal drive in the MBA.
  9. macrumors G5


    Try WinClone (OS X app)
  10. macrumors 6502a

    I can clone the parition, but I don't know how to configure the partition table to make it bootable.

    Also, at this point I don't want to spend $100 on messing with boot camp, so I converted my old bootcamp partition to parallels with Transporter and copied that to an external drive.
  11. macrumors G5


    With USB drive (that has a windows clone) connected, restart while holding OPTION key, windows should show up as a boot option.
  12. macrumors 6502a

    I completly forgot that any USB CD Rom will work and I have an old one that came with my Sharp UM32W. I just tried it and it boots fine.
  13. macrumors 6502a

    Hmm, cloned from what? Another bootcamp disk?
    The problem is the partition table. Will the MBA boot a regular MBR or does it have to be GPT formated like other Intel Mac discs?
  14. macrumors 6502a

    As a test I removed the drive from my MBP and installed it into a USB external enclosure. I then plugged it into my MBA and held the option key while I booted. The option to boot the OS X partition on the USB drive was available, but not the option to boot the bootcamp partition.
  15. macrumors regular


  16. macrumors regular


    Panasonic VW-BN1

    Anyone own a Panasonic VW-BN1? Mine was not recognized by the Macbook Air.

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