Going to install Windows 7 via Bootcamp. 32 or 64 bit?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by CardboardGiant, Dec 26, 2011.

  1. CardboardGiant macrumors regular

    Apr 15, 2011
    Which one is better for my 2011 Macbook Air, 4GB ram, i5?

    32-bit or 64-bit?

    Which one supports the most software?

    Which one would be compatible with VMware Fusion?

    Also I plan on using Windows 7 mostly for music (around 30GB as of now) and movies (around 70GB). I will be using Lion OS X for school via Microsoft Office 2011 Student ediiton. My total SSD size is 256GB.

    Do you think it's a good idea to have 50GB for Lion OS X and 200GB for Windows 7?

    My apologies if this has been asked before.
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    Both will be compatible with VMWare Fusion.
    I would go with the 64-bit version, as Windows is now advanced enough to do this.


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  3. Robyr macrumors regular

    Feb 21, 2010
    Why in the world would you use Windows if you are only going to use it for movies and music? Mac OS does as well, if not excels, at this task compared to Windows.
  4. CardboardGiant thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 15, 2011
    I forgot to mention gaming as well. There's a couple of games that can only be played on Windows and not Mac. Mostly visual novels and SHMUPs.
  5. Robyr macrumors regular

    Feb 21, 2010
    Even then, I question the plan to allocate nearly the entire SSD to Windows. Why not go to something a bit more conservative...
  6. shadowjeff macrumors regular

    Aug 3, 2010
    well maybe the op prefers using windows as his main operating system? Even if i were to prefer windows over mac os, i would also pick up the macbook air cuz it looks so sexy.
  7. CardboardGiant thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 15, 2011
    Also the Macbook Air is just well built and should my machine break down, I am always protected by AppleCare (unless, of course it's my fault).

    Was thinking about buying a new ultraportable via Asus Zenbook, but it looks ugly (too shiny) and there are reports of the keyboard not functioning properly at times.

    Then I thought about the Samsung Series 9... It looks awesome. Specs exceed the MBA (8 GB RAM, i7, 256GB SSD) but MBA is just smoother overall. Why spend another $1000+ when I could just install Windows 7 AND have my MBA protected by AppleCare for 3 years?
  8. 2IS macrumors 68030

    Jan 9, 2011
    I wouldn't really try to do any gaming through VM
  9. turbotoes macrumors regular

    Nov 24, 2010
    64 bit all the way, works like a dream, and uses all the memory!
  10. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    This is probably better suited for the Windows on Mac forum.

    In any case, I'd stick with Boot Camp if you plan to do any gaming. VMWare Fusion can handle a Boot Camp partition just fine. I use Windows 7 64-bit since it gives me the full 4GB (OK 3.625GB) RAM in Boot Camp, but in the VM it doesn't make much difference. When running in a VM, I'd give Windows no more than 2GB so that OS X doesn't slow down too much.

    When partitioning the SSD, note that Boot Camp still uses the old base 1024 method of computing partition size (like Windows), while OS X uses the base 1000 method. That means that the 251GB SSD looks like it is only 234GB. Keep that in mind when setting the partition size.

    While you can have only one Boot Camp partition, you can have multiple OS X partitions. One option is to have 3 partitions. You can have Windows on one, OS X on another, and format the third partition as ExFAT so that both OS X and Windows can read and write to it. You could store your iTunes library there, for instance, so you could access your library from either OS. I think to do that, you need to create the 2nd OS X partition first (using Disk Utility), then run Boot Camp.

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