Clean Window 7 installed?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by mobilevisual, Nov 19, 2009.

  1. mobilevisual macrumors member

    Jun 12, 2009
    Has anyone wiped their HDD/SSD clean and went with JUST Window 7. Please share your experience.

    1) any complication?
    2) Speed differences?
    3) Application improved? worse?
    4) How was the installation process?
    5) Can you fully use the track pad? Any compromise?

    And whatever else you can share.

    My daughter will soon be a college freshman, most academic applications and softwares are designed for Windows. I understand dual boot is an option, but for her, it is unnecessary and a waste of space. To save valuable SSD space, I'm thinking wiping the drive clean and go W7.

    Most of her usage are: Web video apps (live lectures and notes), Youtube, Hulu, photo editing...the usual college stuff. Many of these are Flash and graphic intensive, will W7 take full advantage of the MBA's CPU and GPU?

    Thanks all.
  2. aleksandra. macrumors 6502a

    Sep 13, 2008
    Warsaw, Poland
    Yes, there have been a thread about it recently, look for it if you're interested.

    What MBA revision does she have? Does *she* think OS X is unnecessary and a waste of space? If so, did she even try to use it for some time? If yes and she doesn't like it, why a Mac? All of its advantages apart from design are because of software, there's no magic involved.

    I use Windows 7 via BootCamp and while it deals with Flash better, it also means much shorter battery life - which is usually very important if one needs Air's portability in the first place. There's no reason running it natively would improve that. Say goodbye to multitouch except for two-finger scrolling (much less smooth than in OS X).
  3. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

    Mar 17, 2005
    London, UK
    What kind of academic applications and software will she need that require Windows? I work in academia and a lot of people use Macs now, especially among the staff. When I started University (College) most people had Windows computers. When I left... well, out of a house of 5 guys who all started with Windows, 4 had converted to OS X by the time we graduated.
  4. mobilevisual thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 12, 2009
  5. mobilevisual thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 12, 2009
    I'm sure the university offers academic softwares for both platforms, I just want to be sure she's comfortable with what she's already used to. Thanks for the useful info/stats.
  6. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Most applications have a Mac version. The only few I can imagine that don't are Minitab (for statistics) and maybe AutoCAD.

    If anything, I think there will be a new mates of her's who will be more than happy to show off.
  7. CaptainCannabis macrumors regular

    Oct 29, 2007
  8. nza macrumors member

    Apr 26, 2009
    Maybe instead of questioning this guy's daughter's university's software policies, we could simply help him?
  9. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    1) Getting the USB Ethernet installed is a headache… you should probably do that for her beforehand. Otherwise everything works. Just be sure to install the drivers off the OS X Install DVD.
    2) Not really; you can tweak the speed and everything. Power manage in Windows in bad. People report that battery life suffers, but that's what happens when you don't tweak. If you can, install the Purevideo HD decoder… then your daughter can watch HD without any issues because most things will then be decoded via the GPU.
    3) Windows 7 is amazing; I'd buy Windows 7 Professional. 32-bit or 64-bit… doesn't really matter. Windows 7 Professional has XP-mode which annoys any incompatible applications to run in virtualization. It's pretty straightfoward. Home Premium does not have this and Ultimate is just too expensive. Adobe Flash in Windows 7 is a lot better than that in OS X. Video drivers are better too. Just get the latest ones from
    4) Basically you boot up the machine to the Window 7 installation disk. When prompted to choose the installation drive, select all the partitions and click delete for all of them. Then create a new partition and the rest is straightforward. Just install drivers and an antivirus. Her school may offer one (an antivirus/firewall) that's unobtrusive.
    5) Well you Windows 7 supports multitouch, so you can do the pinch and scroll. I'm not sure about the 3-finger and 4-finger stuff… I never tried it.
  10. spinedoc77 macrumors G3


    Jun 11, 2009
    1) None whatsoever
    2) Win7 runs faster than OSx does with my setup, especially transferring files, but really it's not a large difference, they both do the job.
    3)I'm a lifetime Windows user so most of my stuff is windows programs, I do have several programs which are windows only.
    4) Installation process was VERY easy, just as easy as installing to PC hardware. Put the DVD in, reboot to DVD, install, install bootcamp, done. You may want to update some of the drivers from bootcamp, but in my latest install I found that out of the box I needed none, zero updated drivers.
    5) Track pad works fully for virtually all functions. I'm not sure about multitouch as in zooming, but you can double and triple click no problem, I never really explored what trackpad functions may be native to OSx that I don't have.

    One thing to note is if she will be doing a lot of video the macbook airs have a hiccup/stutter during video. I have a RevB, maybe the RevC are better with the new graphics chipset, but on my RevB whenever I watch any video it will slightly hiccup every minute or so. Other than that it's pretty flawless with audio, or anything else I throw at it. Some days I'm quite surprised to be running 3 firefox browsers with multiple tabs in each, Adobe photoshop, a ton of background taskbar programs, antivirus, instant backup software, etc etc., and it refuses to slow down.

  11. mobilevisual thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 12, 2009
    Thank you all for the feedback. Window 7 it is!!!

    We have been windows users for decades, doesn't mean we're die-hard fans, but because it costs a lot less than the others to upgrade and tinker with. Sold on the MBA for its small form factor, Titanic size trackpad and its simplicity. The MBA really is invisible in a briefcase/backpack.

    To be completely honest, I'm still lost and a tiny bit confused when doing anything more than basic computing on OS X. Not to say that OS X is confusing or required a higher learning curve than Windows, simply because it is harder for an old dog to learn new tricks. I sure am glad El Jobso allows other OS to operate on "his" toys.

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