A few questions about the Air, appreciate help.

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by jinxednuance, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. jinxednuance macrumors regular

    Feb 6, 2011

    Model: Macbook Air basic model.

    I recently got my Macbook Air and I was a little hesitant as to if I should return it and grab the new Macbook Pro but looking at the changes, I am better of with my Air.

    1. I want to install Win7 and I was wondering, do I have to upgrade the RAM to 4GB for it to run smoothly? or it wouldn't make a difference? My needs are basic and not complex, the only reason I want Win7 is because there are some softwares that don't run on Mac and I need. I will be using BootCamp and not parallel.

    2. What Win7 do I get, 32 or 64 and can someone please explain the difference and why is it I have to choose b/w those two for the Air.

    3. Is there a way to keep my USB connected even if the laptop is in sleep mode? Sometimes I'd want to charge my phone yet keep the computer in sleep mode.

    4. How do you keep the settings of your energy saver? I usually keep the computer on whilst being charging and turn off the monitor.

    Thanks a lot!
  2. miggitymac macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2009
    Sorry, I don't use Windows on my macs so I can't answer 1 or 2, but for 3 try insomniaX here. It prevents sleep even when the lid is closed. There's also caffeine in the Mac App Store, but that one doesn't prevent sleep when the lid is closed (so you could basically achieve the same thing as it does by adjusting your system preferences...).

    For 4: I let the screen saver kick in at 3 mins, screen-sleep to kick in at 3 mins and system sleep at 5 mins when it's on battery (I also make it so the screen dims before sleeping). When I'm plugged in, screen goes off at 5 mins, and system sleeps at 10 mins.

    Note: you can turn the screen off whenever you like by using hot corners too.
  3. FFabian macrumors member


    Aug 26, 2010
    Bochum, Germany
    No need to upgrade to 4GB for Windows 7. Win 7 runs fine on other non-Apple Netbooks with 2 GB.
  4. 2IS macrumors 68030

    Jan 9, 2011
    You can't upgrade the memory on the Air's anyway. It's soldered onto the board. You would have to return/sell it and buy a 4GB version if you wanted 4GB.

    If you run Win7 via Bootcamp 2GB is enough unless you plan on doing gaming. If you're going to run it in a virtual machine you're much better off with 4gb
  5. jinxednuance thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 6, 2011
    I am still within my 14 day window of returning, so I can return it and purchase the 4GB online.

    As for Windows, aren't the netbooks that run Windows 7, have Win7 Lite? and not the fully fledged OS? Or they're both the same OS?
  6. gdeputy macrumors 6502a


    Jul 23, 2008
    New York
    I would get the 4GB ram version regardless. 2GB -> 4GB is a difference in ram that most people DO notice. 4->8, not so much, but I would personally return the 2GB model and grab a 4GB.
  7. jinxednuance thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 6, 2011
    I think I will just order the ultimate. It's almost a $500 extra, but I'll get it for the long term.
  8. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    x2. I run Windows 7 through Boot Camp and through Parallels, so I opted for the 4GB model. On my previous MacBook Air (2GB) I used primarily Boot Camp and it ran acceptably.

    If you have a 2GB machine, stick with 32-bit Windows 7. 64-bit only becomes a benefit at 4GB. It's Microsoft, not Apple, who made the decision to release two different versions of Windows.

    If you are going to return your base Air, wait until tomorrow to see what other MacBook Pro configurations are available. All that's been leaked so far are the base specs. Apparently they will ship with the Core i5 and so will be significantly faster at CPU tasks and far more "future-proof," but will also be heavier.

    If you stick with the Air, remember that part of the $500 difference between the base and the ultimate is the larger SSD. If you don't need it, then consider a 1.86GHz 4GB RAM model with a 128GB SSD. It's $100 more than the base 13".
  9. bowlerman625 macrumors 68020


    Jun 17, 2009
    Chicago, IL area
    good idea!
  10. jinxednuance thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 6, 2011
    So if I get 4GB then I'd go with 64-bit?

    I will be waiting to see what Apple will offer in terms of the Pro, but having used both going lighter is so... lighter! I mean I can carry the extra pounds with the Pro, but do I have to? Not really. Then again, do I not want a "future proof" computer, most certainly! I am becoming addicted to having the next best thing, when I know that's almost impossible because I am not that rich. I want to get a laptop for at least the coming 2 or 3 years. So now I am even more confused. :(
  11. Wrathwitch macrumors 65816

    Dec 4, 2009
    Haha I know what you mean about becoming addicted to the next "best"thing. Damn, I remember when getting the latest and best cell phone easily lasted a couple of years... things sure have changed.

    I bought the 13 Macbook Air Ultimate, and installed Windows 7 64 bit using bootcamp. I suspect that eventually they will rid themselves of 32bit, but that is just some things I have heard speculated by computer weenie friends of mine.

    I was tempted by the MBP upgrade but realized that I have SSD, higher resolution (I bought an external optical drive to load any programs that are needed by disk).

    Either way, MBP didn't offer me enough to take another large cost leap when what I currently own is more than enough for my needs.

    HOWEVER, that being said, if you are going for a product, get the biggest and best you can for it. Get the 4 GB for the Air.

    I have never regretted buying the top end of the line when it came to computers or cell phones.

  12. Troilus macrumors newbie

    Nov 11, 2010
    You can use either usb port to charge your phone while your Air is sleeping. I know this because I use this method before bedtime.
  13. epicshredder macrumors newbie

    Jan 28, 2011
    Boulder, Co
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_2_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8C148 Safari/6533.18.5)

    I am in same dilemma, I have MBA ultimate 13" and am within 14 day return/exchange window. Lower resolution on new mbp 13" is concern for me. I've been really happy with MBA 13" ultimate so far, and will prolly stick with it. My only concern I yours about future proof, not sure if new lion will run smooth yet, but have no reason to think it won't. Good luck with decision.
  14. jinxednuance thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 6, 2011
    What have you decided?

    I returned my basic model Air and will be getting the Ultimate tomorrow. I hope it's worth the extra $500!
    Future-Proof or not, I am coming this beast for a while!
  15. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    I think you'll be fine for the next 2 years or so with the 13" "ultimate." To answer your other question, I'd go ahead with Windows 7 64-bit if you intend to use Boot Camp. At 4GB the 32-bit/64-bit decision is a bit of a wash, but since you have the extra SSD space and RAM, you might as well install 64-bit. Are you installing Home Premium or Professional (or Ultimate)?
  16. jinxednuance thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 6, 2011
    Home premium. So I go with the 64 bit? Can you please tell me what is the difference?

  17. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    The main difference is that the 64-bit version can access larger chunks of memory than the 32-bit version. Theoretically, a 32-bit OS can access 4GB of RAM, but in practice it is limited to about 3.25GB. Another plus is that 64-bit Windows drivers must be digitally signed, so they are less likely to crash or contain malware.

    The downside to Windows 7 64-bit is that it can't run 16-bit applications (Windows 3.x, DOS, some very early Windows 95 software), but those applications are not very common. The 64-bit code also takes up more disk space and uses a little more RAM.

    Both versions will run your 32-bit applications just fine.
  18. jinxednuance thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 6, 2011
    Thank you for your explanation. I was wondering, if I ever to buy a Win7 copy on the Air and then decide to change my computers later down the road, would I be able to deactivate the copy on the Air and reactive it on a new Macbook?
  19. yoitsmebenny macrumors newbie

    Feb 23, 2011
    When you activate your copy of Windows, it sends a hardware profile to MS. If you reinstall the same key on another machine with a vastly different hardware profile, you'll just have to call MS and tell them - won't be an issue.
  20. GekkePrutser macrumors 6502a


    Aug 18, 2005
    And I don't regret always going for the lowest-end models. Especially with Apple where upgrades are very expensive.

    I've always gone for the entry-level iPhone, iPad, and Macs. The higher ones offered only marginal speed increases, if any. Storage is usually better: doubled storage, but for a price.

    The usual 15-20% speed increase is usually not really noticeable and I think it's better to keep the money towards the next model which gives much more of an improvement. So you can upgrade quicker.

    And more storage just means you'll need to swap stuff out less often. No matter how big the drive, I always manage to fill it in a few weeks. It just means less housekeeping and consequently more of a mess.

    I think it's just what works for you though. I tend to ebay-upgrade my macs pretty frequently, but if you keep them for a long time it makes more sense to get the ultimate.

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