GUIDE: installing Windows 7 x64 on optibay drive. (MBP 2010/2011)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by donjao, May 15, 2011.

  1. donjao, May 15, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2011

    donjao macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2008
    #1
    NOTE!
    Some users also have been successful with 2011 MacBook Pro models. Read below.



    Firstly, I've got Mid 2010 17" MBP therefore following info may be inaccurate for other models.

    So, if you're struggling how to install a bootcamped W7x64 onto your optibay drive, this short `readme` may save your time.

    1.
    Don't even try to use external dvd-drive. It will not work. You will have to use your original SuperDrive (well, not original, point is that you must use an optical drive plugged in into you secondary (original) SATA interface).

    2.
    Do not use rEFIt, it will not help achieving your goal at all.

    3.
    You will have to remove your current hard drive (I've got 128 SSD) from primary SATA slot and place your secondary drive in there instead. This is essential.

    4.
    You will have to replace your SuperDrive with optibay only after windows has been successfully installed on the secondary HDD. (I also did activate my windoz before reassembling).

    5.
    If you're trying to use multiple partitions on your secondary HDD, do not use Boot Camp assistant. Manually partition your HDD into # amount of partitions, use Master Boot Record partition table, and format your windows partition as FAT-32. Don't use GUID (I wasn't able to startup the installer).




    I hope this helps and saves your time. I tried every other option I was aware of, including creating and modifying ISO image, creating bootable USB, bootable partitions etc etc etc, just don't bother trying. I was so desperate to avoid disassembling that I spend 5 days of my life fighting it and it ended up realizing that I just wasted my time, so, hopefully you will inherit my blood-earned wisdom.

    Edit:

    Yeah, to make it clear, this was all about trying to install legit MSDN's Windows 7 x64 SP1 distribution.

    Tags:
    windows, boot camp, windows 7 x64 sp1, optibay, secondary hdd, windows partition
     
  2. dagamer34 macrumors 65816

    dagamer34

    Joined:
    May 1, 2007
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #2
    Do it once, create an image (unactivated), and never do it again.

    Oddly enough, the new 2011 MacBook Pro's provide upto 2.1 Amps to a single USB port so it can charge an iPad 2 without taking forever to do so. The MacBook Air SuperDrive only needs 1.5 Amps to operate. It would be interesting to see if that would work... Of course, anything released before 2011 would still be SOL.
     
  3. donjao thread starter macrumors member

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    Apr 21, 2008
    #3
    Mind me if I'm wrong, but restoring an NTFS partition while running OS X seems to be impossible, already tried it (CCC and Disk Utility).
     
  4. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    Dec 5, 2007
    Location:
    Yay Area, CA
    #4
    Winclone allows that feature.
     
  5. donjao thread starter macrumors member

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    Apr 21, 2008
    #5
    I haven't even tried the WinClone since it's discontinued. Can you confirm it (v2.2) works under 10.6.7? Can't try it myself — away from my MBP for 3 days.
     
  6. j.castle macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2011
    #6
    This is what ended up doing. I have SSD in main bay and HD in optibay.

    1. I made a Bootcamp partition to my HD.
    2. I cloned my SSD with CarbonCopyCloner to my HD.
    3. Removed SSD from mainbay and put my HD in mainbay and put the Superdrive into it's normal place.
    4. Installed Windows through Bootcamp to HD at mainbay.
    5. Removed Superdrive and put back my HD in optibay and SSD in mainbay.

    --> Now I have a Bootcamp installed Windows on my HD at the optibay.
     
  7. donjao thread starter macrumors member

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    Apr 21, 2008
    #7
    Good to know that you've had to go pretty much the same path as me with Early 2011 MBP.
     
  8. seanmorr macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2011
    #8
    resurrecting an older thread since it might solve my problems

    can anyone else confirm getting this to work on 2011 macbook pros??
     
  9. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #9
    Yes ... I can confirm what he says applies to the latest 2011 Macbook Pro as I am doing it even as I type (on another computer :) ).

    I had replaced my stock 750GB HD with a 240GB SSD, then transplanted the original HD into an optibay which replaced the internal SuperDrive. I then mounted the removed SuperDrive into an external USB case. I "recovered" OS X Lion onto the SSD and everything seemed to be working fine, including the external optical drive.

    When I tried to install Windows 7 from the external drive onto a BootCamp partition on the SSD, it would not work. All I got was a blank screen with a flashing "dash" character in the upper left hand corner. Eventually the optical drive would spin-down and stop. I confirmed on another computer that the external SuperDrive with the same DVD in it would boot and reach the installation screens.

    I disconnected the drive-cable to the optibay thinking maybe there were too many partitions for the windows installer to handle ... but still no-go.

    I finally had to reinstall the SuperDrive into the computer again, and again tried installing Windows from it onto the SSD BootCamp partition. It is installing normally now and is almost finished.

    Once it is all running, I will again swap the SuperDrive and optibay-HD and should be good to go!

    Good Luck!


    -howard
     
  10. ahdickter macrumors 6502

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    Jun 12, 2011
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    Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
    #10
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A405 Safari/7534.48.3)

    But I thought people had problems when they installed Windows first and then OS X?
     
  11. SpazzyMac macrumors regular

    SpazzyMac

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    Jul 15, 2011
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    Denmark
    #11
    I thought that it was possible to install Windows 7 from an .ISO or USB-drive now?
     
  12. seanmorr macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2011
    #12
    as far as I can tell, only on the macbook air's and mini's
    the machines without optical drives

    on the macbook pro's it doesn't seem possible without outrageous workarounds(if at all)

    ...that being said, I could be totally wrong...
     
  13. SpazzyMac macrumors regular

    SpazzyMac

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    Jul 15, 2011
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    Denmark
    #13
    I can confirm that the 2011 MacBook Pro's can install bootcamp from a USB-drive, that has been created through the Boot Camp Assistant :D so that is nice :apple:
     
  14. seanmorr macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2011
    #14
    can you elaborate? I don't get the option to create a usb drive with a 2011 MBP in bootcamp
     
  15. SpazzyMac, Nov 15, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2011

    SpazzyMac macrumors regular

    SpazzyMac

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    Jul 15, 2011
    Location:
    Denmark
    #15
    in order for it to work you need:
    Windows 7 ISO Downloaded directly from Microsoft and a 4gb USB-drive

    Spot light search: Boot Camp Assistant :p

    click: Continue

    Tada: Create a Windows 7 install disk

    if you allready have Bootcamp installed i think you need to remove it first completly, in order to create a install disk but I don't know.

    and apparently you need Boot Camp Assistant 4.0.1
     
  16. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #16
    I was unable to create the USB WinInstall flash drive on my 2011 Macbook Pro (the option to do so was inactive). I was able to create it on my 2011 Macbook Air, and did the install on the Air successfully.

    However, I was unable to use that same drive (created on the Air) to install to the MB Pro. It would not select the USB flash drive, nor would it select a USB optical drive with the DVD produced from that image. The Air would boot the external USB optical drive.

    Possibly something different in the EFI boot on the two machines?

    I also discovered that the "Windows Support" download was different for the Air and the Pro. The Pro would not use the one downloaded as part of the Air Windows install, I had to do another download on the Pro to get a file it would accept. They were different sized files.

    -howard
     
  17. SpazzyMac macrumors regular

    SpazzyMac

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    Jul 15, 2011
    Location:
    Denmark
    #17
    maybe it is for the ones only inside the United States? :(
     
  18. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

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    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #18
    I don't know ... :)

    It gets really frustrating when things don't behave consistently!

    I wish someone inside at Apple would explain just how these machines differ, and why the installations aren't the same on same generation machines.
     
  19. seanmorr macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2011
    #19
    spazzy you seem to be in the minority, I have done a lot of research and found nobody that was able to install win7 from a usb drive on a 2011 MBP.

    I had the same experience as hfg...that option was not available

    I had a macbook air right before the pro that I returned and I had created a usb disk with that to install win7. I tried using it on the pro and it did not work.

    as far as I can tell the usb installation only works on airs and minis

    I have tried multiple times to install win7 on my 2nd drive using different techniques and have had no luck.

    the technique mentioned in this thread looked promising...I'm just worn out from opening up the case and swapping out the optibay and the dvd drive.

    I may just order a larger sad drive :(
     
  20. dmhawk macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2007
    #20
    What needs to be done to the secondary drive before putting it in the main hd bay and installing windows? It isn't possible to do this with a new blank drive, right?
     
  21. swartzfeger macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2012
    #21
    I'm buying an early 2011 MBP next week and plan on going the SSD and optibay route. Also plan on doing boot camp.

    Is the moral of the story that I would be better off creating a bootcamp partition from day one, install win 7, and then upgrade my machine with the SSD and optibay?
     
  22. donjao thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2008
    #22
    No, it is possible. Windows installer can and will format empty drive.

    Seems like yes. I assume that you could even clone your logical partition to new physical SSD drive this way. But, can be wrong.
     

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