Does the iMac 5k support Windows 7 in bootcamp?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by FarFromHomeFish, Oct 28, 2014.

  1. FarFromHomeFish, Oct 28, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2014

    FarFromHomeFish macrumors newbie

    Sep 12, 2007
    Time marches on. Operating systems come and go. I realize that. But I don't want to give up Windows 7.

    Even as OS X and iOS received dramatic facelifts, Apple has kept its operating systems familiar enough not to be intimidating. Not so much Microsoft. Windows 8 is evidence that Microsoft thinks that desktop computers, tablets, and phones have similar use cases. They're wrong. Windows might be an excellent contender on Phone and Surface. As a desktop OS, it's a bad Frankenstein: more frustrating than frightening, and not something I'd like to see on a daily basis.

    It doesn't help that the framework I use for hobby programming isn't officially supported on Windows 8.

    I've read that bootcamp on the new Mac Pro requires Windows 8. Is the new retina iMac similarly not backward compatible with Windows 7?
  2. habeebhashim macrumors member

    Jun 16, 2009
    Win 7 x64 installs fine with bootcamp ver 5 onwards. I have mine installed with a 3TB Fusion drive... which earlier was giving a lot of problems to other folks. So that's sorted as well.

    But I think you need 64-bit ver of Windows. I think Apple dropped support for 32... from the Apple website


    Which versions of Windows work with Boot Camp 5.1?
    You can use:

    Microsoft Windows 8.0 and 8.1 (64-bit)
    Microsoft Windows 8.0 and 8.1 Pro (64-bit)
    Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit)
    Microsoft Windows 7 Professional (64-bit)
    Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate (64-bit)
    Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Enterprise versions of Windows 7 and Windows 8 are not supported.

    Are 32-bit versions of Windows 7 and 8 supported?

    No. Boot Camp 5 supports 64-bit versions of Windows 7, 8.0 and 8.1 only. Boot Camp 4 supports 64-bit and 32-bit versions of Windows 7, depending on the Mac model you have. For more information, see Boot Camp: System requirements for Microsoft Windows operating systems.

  3. odedia macrumors 65816

    Nov 24, 2005
    Boot Camp supports Fusion drives?? I am sure I read in the past that you can't install Windows on a fusion drive. Has this changed in recent years?
  4. habeebhashim macrumors member

    Jun 16, 2009
    Yes, from ver 5 onwards. But the bootcamp partition is in the mechanical HDD only. Not on the 128GB SSD.
  5. FarFromHomeFish thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 12, 2007
    Thank you for clearing this up habeebhashim! I'm looking forward to my Retina iMac delivery even more than I'm looking forward to Microsoft releasing a desktop OS without any tablet/phone cruft.
  6. jbuk1 macrumors member

    Oct 24, 2014
    Windows 8.1 and classic shell and you've just got a faster improved Windows 7.

    I was skeptical too but really it's a joy to use and I run a large network of windows PCs. So far even the most resistant of users haven't complained about Windows 8.1 on our new machines. Obviously there has been a fair amount of tweaking to the policies.

    Personally I use the normal windows 8.1 start menu. It doesn't bother me as even in windows 7 I open programs by hitting windows key and then starting to type the app name. This is exactly the same in windows 8 and with the OS X spotlight.

    But yes, boot camp will still support windows 7.
  7. zarf2007 macrumors regular

    Aug 27, 2010
    London, UK
    which amd drivers did you use under bootcamp? i have tried installing the latest beta drivers and the 295x is not recognised......I really want to avoid going to 8.1 even with classic shell but may have to.....everything else works under win7....(running win 7 x64 ultimate fully patched).
  8. ichii macrumors 6502a


    Sep 20, 2006
    anyone test Windows 10 preview on the 5k iMac? I tested it on my MBP and everything work except the sound.
  9. intz2nu macrumors 6502


    Oct 28, 2012
    Great thread with usefull info. Personally I was curious about the samething as I plan to pickup a top spec Retina iMac this is one of the biggest concerns I had so given the info here it seems that Win7 64bit will indeed work without any issues?

    Does anyone have an idea as to how it would look on the 5K display? And also where does one find movie content for the new 5K display, and also anyone know of some good sites for wallpapers for the higher res display?
  10. tillsbury macrumors 65816

    Dec 24, 2007
    Bit pointless as the windows drivers don't support 5k yet...
  11. habeebhashim macrumors member

    Jun 16, 2009
    I've tried using drivers from nV / AMD before on my older Mac Mini / iMac. Don't know why but stability was sometimes an issue.

    So I just stick to the drivers installed by Apple. You get this when you use Bootcamp Assistant to create a partition and install Windows.
  12. FarFromHomeFish thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 12, 2007
    Ars technica's pre-review benchmarks notes that Windows 8.1 does runs at 4k UHD, not 5k. Not to fear, though: all those pixels keep things looking sharp:
    The Ars piece is one of the best yet written on the retina iMac. You should read it!
  13. ha1o2surfer macrumors 6502

    Sep 24, 2013
    5k support is there but I guess you're right, AMD needs to update their drivers for the M295X for Windows.

    Windows supports any resolution you want. Even 3 4k monitors hooked up in surround which is 11520x2160 @60hz ;)
  14. zAAz macrumors newbie

    Oct 24, 2014
    Is it possible that the custom TCON makes it impossible to drive 5K in windows? I mean if windows somehow doesn't support Apples TCON solution (i don't excactly how Apple did it). If windows only see it as one DP 1.2 cable it would explain why it could only drive 4K (5K need more bandwidth than DP 1.2 can handle).

    It would be nice if someone told me i'm wrong and it's just a driver issue.
  15. ha1o2surfer macrumors 6502

    Sep 24, 2013
    Hardware is hardware so It all comes down to software support, I imagine. I'll just bring my windows flash drive into a store and boot into windows and figure it out
  16. FarFromHomeFish, Nov 4, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2014

    FarFromHomeFish thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 12, 2007
    For those of you who are considering Windows 7 on the retina iMac - unfortunately, it's a bit of a mess. Windows 7 simply doesn't scale correctly - even setting Parallels to retina still leaves random portions of the interface unscaled. Even buttons in the core OS are incorrectly sized, cutting off text. Individual programs often have their own problems. The jaggies are bad as well - because the pixels on the retina iMac are so much sharper than non-retina displays, text is painfully sharp.

    I downloaded Win10 TP, and it looks much better, but unfortunately I'm tethered to Windows 7 by the programs I use.

    Here's what I've done to alleviate the scaling problems:
    1. I run the retina iMac at a higher scaled resolution, and
    2. I use MacType, which changes the text rendering to use whole-pixel smoothing - like a Mac! Windows ClearType uses sub-pixel rendering, which looks terrible on Retina. Super sharp red and blue pixels on the edge of each letter!

    This is not a perfect solution - but it's Good Enough.
  17. habeebhashim macrumors member

    Jun 16, 2009
    Sorry to hear that... but what res are you running Win 7? I'm running it fine at 2560x1440. Granted the only programs I use are iTunes, Chrome and games on Win7.

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