Can you copy your existing windows install to Bootcamp?

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by chrisb46, Feb 26, 2008.

  1. chrisb46 macrumors newbie

    Jan 31, 2008
    I've just ordered the new MacBook Pro* to replace my aging Dell Inspiron. I know Parallels will let me virtualise my existing Vista install to my new Mac (I need it for Visual Studio) through Transporter, but I wondered whether it was possible to do the same thing to Bootcamp?


    * thank you Dell for sending me an XPS M1330 with CPU whine three weeks late on Monday, and thank you Apple for finally updating the MBP within the return window on my Dell order.
  2. Neil321 macrumors 68040


    Nov 6, 2007
    Britain, Avatar Created By Bartelby
    pretty sure you can use backup to a external,and install vista on the new machine,run windows
    backup and restore the image from external
  3. parapup macrumors 65816


    Oct 31, 2006
    If your Vista edition has Windows Backup and if you have a external USB drive of adequate size - you can run the Windows Backup and run complete PC backup to the USB drive. Then you will need to install Vista on your new Macbook Pro and again run Windows Backup to restore the image from the USB drive - I suspect you will need to re-activate Vista although that's just a phone call annoyance.
  4. chrisb46 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 31, 2008
    Thanks, hadn't thought of using Vista Backup, I'll try that.
  5. dgdosen macrumors 65832


    Dec 13, 2003
    Why? Wouldn't it be much easier to just re-install? seems like a waste of time. If you're worried about your license, just call up Microsoft and replace it.
  6. cmturner2 macrumors member


    Jan 31, 2008
    Apex, NC
    I actually have the same question. The reason would be that it's much more time efficient to image an existing OS install than it would be to spend 3-7 days tracking down, backing up, and re-installing everything.

    Optimally I'd like to be able to take the HD with my current XP install out of my current machine, and simply integrate it as a boot option in a Mac Pro.
  7. PcBgone macrumors 6502


    Feb 3, 2008
    Id like to do this as well...will this work?
  8. xgman macrumors 601


    Aug 6, 2007
    bump for the last two questions in the above posts? Anyone know if/how this can be done in bootcamp? Can you boot to the windows vista cd, run a repair on the vista partition, use the intel (mac pro) drivers and then go from there?

    I guess the basic question is do you have to run a windows install when setting up bootcamp to get bootcamp to be active or is there a way to use an existing vista partition somehow to shorcut this?
  9. vistafanboi macrumors member

    Feb 28, 2007
    Copy existing Windows Install to "boot camp".

    Please try to explain this a little better, OK? As it stands, it appears that you are instructing folks to
    1) Do a complete PC backup
    2) Install Vista "cleanly" on your new machine
    3) Replace that clean instance of Vista with the BACKUP you saved.

    This makes absolutely NO SENSE to me.

    First of all, Windows is NEVER "installed to BootCamp". Windows is installed on a TRUE Windows partition, which is CREATED by using BootCamp software, which then acts as a BOOT-LOADER for Vista, NOT your Apple machine.

    Once Vista is installed using BootCamp software, and booted, NOT A SINGLE BIT Of Apple OS X code will be left in memory, so when running Windows on such a Windows partition on an Apple machine, the ONLY OS running is Windows. PERIOD. Boot Camps ONLY purpose is to create the Windows Partition, then allow your machine to be BOOTED into Windows.

    For all intents and purposes, the machine will still be an Apple, but it will NOW be an "Apple" Windows-based PC. IN fact, NOTHING of OS X will be available to Vista when Windows is operating. Even the software which enables one to switch back to OS X is a strictly-WINDOWS application.

    I would backup my USER files, but NOT my Windows OS itself, since you will be installing Vista freshly on your new machine anyway. The redundancy will make it more complicated, and possibly could BREAK your new install of Vista.

    Also, EVERY clean install of Vista will have to be activated to be used beyone the 30-day shakedown period. There is NO WAY to get around this, short of using an illegal hack. Copying your "complete PC backup" back to your new installation of Vista MIGHT require you to activate it AGAIN, when it isn't necessary.

    I advise you to follow OFFICIAL Apple instructions for installing Vista, rather than trying to do a messy hack using advice from people who really don't understand what they are advising you do do.

    Donald L McDaniel
  10. Neil321 macrumors 68040


    Nov 6, 2007
    Britain, Avatar Created By Bartelby
    In another post you accuse people of not getting the licensing of Vista correct when it is in fact
    you who is posting fud try reading this about technet

    Nice to see your now doing it again

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