Can't install Windows on MacBook using BootCamp

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by mario_bros_tech, Feb 20, 2018.

  1. mario_bros_tech macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    Jan 1, 2018
    #1
    Hello all,
    I have a MacBook 4,1 from Early 2008 (specs can be seen here)

    My built-in DVD drive is unfortunately creating hairline scratches on DVDs (I don't know what's causing it, but it's probably the insertion mechanism, which very forcefully accepts DVDs).

    While trying to install Windows using BootCamp, I am unsuccessful, no matter what I try. I created the partition through BootCamp assistant, inserted the installation DVD (in the sketchy internal drive and an external drive), and no matter what I do, the machine boots up to a black screen with a blinking cursor. At this point, the nootbook heats up and the fans violently ramp up. Then I turned off the machine to prevent any damage. This procedure always happens unless I hold option and select the machine to boot from it's Mac OS X partition.

    I've seen other reports of this happening online, but none of them have worked for me. I've never opened the machine to do a RAM upgrade or anything like that.

    I have seen this guide on Apple's website saying that Windows 7 needs to be installed as a 32-Bit version on my MacBook model, but I don't have a 32-Bit DVD, and other users said that 64-Bit versions of Windows can be installed on my machine.

    I would also like to know if trying to install Windows from a USB stick would also work on a MacBook that's this old... If you happen to know.

    Thanks for any and all feedback! I'll have all week to respond to your comments and test out possible solutions :)
     
  2. Darmok N Jalad macrumors 68000

    Darmok N Jalad

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    #2
    If you wish to try the 32bit version of Windows 7, try this page (you'll need your CD-key):
    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows7

    Not sure if it works on older Macs, but you can try mounting the ISO on your MacBook (double click on the ISO) and see if Bootcamp will accept it.
     
  3. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #3
    I'm not sure as this would work, especially because I haven't installed Windows yet. I'm pretty sure BootCamp requires the user to boot into the Windows installer using EFI boot and format the BootCamp partition to install Windows.
    Do you know if a 64-Bit installation will work, or am I forced to use 32-Bit?
     
  4. Darmok N Jalad macrumors 68000

    Darmok N Jalad

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    #4
    I don't know on the 32-bit issue. If your research is saying to try it, it can't hurt to try. There shouldn't be much of a problem unless you have more than 4GB RAM or a 64bit program. What I suggested is apparently one way to get Bootcamp to recognize your install disk. You could also try booting to USB installer. This guide could help you with that:
    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/5105056?start=0&tstart=0
     
  5. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #5
    So booting from a USB would work on a MacBook that already has a built-in SuperDrive? I thought I'd have to use the built-in drive to do it...
     
  6. Darmok N Jalad macrumors 68000

    Darmok N Jalad

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    #6
    You can give it a try. Most relatively modern systems have the ability to boot from a USB drive. The same could probably be done with your MacOS installer. It's never a bad idea to have such a thumb drive ready in case you run into significant hard drive problems.
     
  7. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #7
    Yeah, I have one, so I'll try formatting it on a PC with Rufus.
    For these old MacBooks, should I use UEFI or BIOS for the boot system?
     
  8. Darmok N Jalad macrumors 68000

    Darmok N Jalad

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    #8
    You would hold down the Alt/Option key after the boot bong, and then select the USB drive. If one doesn't show, then you can't go that route. Hopefully you have a Windows machine available to make the USB drive installer from the Windows 7 ISO.
     
  9. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #9
    Ok. I'll try it when I get home later. Thanks for the feedback!
     
  10. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #10
    Unfortunately, the Mac isn't detecting the USB past the OS level, no matter how I format it.
    Any other ideas?
     
  11. Darmok N Jalad macrumors 68000

    Darmok N Jalad

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  12. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #12
    I don't particularly want to do that, as this is a machine with a slower CPU, so I was planning on installing Windows 7. I'll try creating a USB at my friend's house later today on his Windows laptop. I'll also try using Rufus to create a Windows 7 USB (because I used dd on my MacBook yesterday).
    I'll update you as I try new solutions.
     
  13. Darmok N Jalad macrumors 68000

    Darmok N Jalad

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    #13
    All this tool does is take your Windows ISO and make a bootable USB drive. It does require a Windows machine to use it, but being from MS, it should be the best way to make the proper USB installer.
     
  14. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #14
    OK; I'll try using it in a few minutes and let you know how it goes.
     
  15. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #15
    So, what happens is no matter what method I try, through the MS installer or with Rufus, the flash drive doesn't appear in the boot list, but EFI Boot with a flash drive icon appears. Upon selecting the item, the computer completely freezes and the fans appear to ramp up. The computer can boot from an OS X install USB, but not a Windows installer USB... Strange...
    My last option to try is installing rEFInd, an alternative EFI Boot manager. I don't know much about it or how to set it up, but it appears to be my only option.
    What steps would you recommend taking at this point?
     
  16. Darmok N Jalad macrumors 68000

    Darmok N Jalad

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    #16
    I wonder if an external USB DVD drive would work? That would probably involve spending some money on your part (unless you can borrow one), but I suppose you might want to have one anyway if the internal drive is failing. Another option would be to try finding a replacement for your internal DVD drive, but that involves some disassembly.
     
  17. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #17
    I have an external MacBook Air SuperDrive and an LG external USB DVD drive.
    According to Apple, external SuperDrives won't work on MacBooks with built-in SuperDrives.
    My LG DVD drive did the exact same thing the built-in drive did - black screen with blinking cursor and ramping up fan speed.

    I am lost at this point; do you think a modded EFI is worth installing (such as rEFInd)?
     
  18. Darmok N Jalad macrumors 68000

    Darmok N Jalad

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    #18
    That, I don't know. It would probably depend on how important your MacBook is. Messing with the EFI could potentially brick the entire system.
     
  19. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #19
    So then, what would my other options be?
    Do you know anyone who you can refer me to or ask to look at this post?
    I need this for school and really don't want to buy a new computer just to run basic Windows programs...
     
  20. Darmok N Jalad macrumors 68000

    Darmok N Jalad

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    #20
  21. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #21
    O
    Ok. The DVD drive is functional, but scratches DVDs. My concern before I buy the DVD reader is that it's a software issue. The external DVD drive had the exact same result, which makes it seem more like a software issue. Correct me if I'm wrong here, but I'm hesitant to spend money if it won't fix the problem.
     
  22. Darmok N Jalad macrumors 68000

    Darmok N Jalad

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    #22
    That is certainly hard to tell. It seems unlikely, and more like a possible limitation of the hardware and older EFI. Have you tried putting a linux distro on a USB drive and seeing if you can boot to it in live mode? You just need the program unetbootin and a linux iso to create one.

    Another shot would be to try virtualbox and install/run Windows inside MacOS. Since your hardware is old, it would be pretty slow. I guess it would depend on what you need to run on Windows.
     
  23. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #23
    It won't boot into anything using EFI. The machine just freezes, which is becoming a new issue. I'll do some research into that, but I know it is possible to use BootCamp on this machine, especially because BootCamp would be disabled if I couldn't...
    --- Post Merged, Feb 22, 2018 ---
    Apparently, other users have reported other EFI boot managers fixing the exact issue I described above.
    I guess I'll try that tomorrow morning!
    Where I looked: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/5940995
     
  24. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #24
    Before I try another EFI, I think this is just a matter of waiting. I'm gonna try the internal DVD drive, which is the only method that seems to work on these old MacBooks. I'll let you know how it goes...
    This is where I got the info about the DVD drives: https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/blinking-cursor-during-windows-7-bootcamp-installation.1134952/
     
  25. mario_bros_tech thread starter macrumors newbie

    mario_bros_tech

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    #25
    I've tried literally everything and nothing works. Internal and external DVD readers show the blinking cursor, USB drives freeze the boot selector, and waiting for nearly 20 minutes does nothing.
    Any other suggestions before I move onto replacing my MacBook's EFI?
    If I can't get a good answer here, I might start another fourm post. This isn't my computer, and I really don't want to mess with the EFI if I can avoid it. It's obviously not an issue with the DVD drive, considering both readers produce the exact same results...
    I'm genuinely lost. I've worked for years with servers, networking, and screwed up RAID arays, but even someone with this much experience can't figure out what should be a simple problem.
    Please respond ASAP, I really want to get this done before next week.

    Thanks again for all your help. If there's anyone who you might know who can help me, please refer them to this fourm post.
    --- Post Merged, Feb 23, 2018 ---
    And no, not even a Linux distro boots from USB...
    It just freezes. No error, not even a black screen.
    I forgot to add that booting from USB doesn't show the drive directly, it only shows the EFI option.
    And booting from a DVD shows both "Windows" and "EFI Boot," but both produce the cursor problem.
    I've used these exact same DVDs to boot an OS X installer on this machine. USBs also work for booting OS X installers, but nothing else.
    Maybe I'll figure this out, but it looks like I'll need to post elsewhere.

    Thanks again, I don't know where I'd be without your advice :)

    Would calling Apple on an out-of-warranty machine do anything? I do have another Mac with a warranty, so I could immitate that that's the machine that has the issue, if need be.
    Let me know...
     

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28 February 20, 2018