Is it possible to install Win7 from USB ?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by techmonkey, Mar 3, 2012.

  1. techmonkey macrumors 6502a

    Jun 8, 2007
    I downloaded Win7 Pro from the MSDN site. The file is an ISO. I was able to use a tool from MS to create a bootable USB stick from the ISO file. I cannot however get my Macbook Pro to see this drive. Ive tried rEFIt and that wasnt able to see it either. Ive read that MacBook Airs have the ability to create USB boot drives for Win7 using Bootcamp Assistant, but this is not an option when I run it. I am running Lion.
  2. ryannel2003 macrumors 68000


    Jan 30, 2005
    Greenville, NC
    I do not believe this is possible on the MacBook Pro's. When I downloaded the ISO from the MS website I burned the image onto a DVD. As far as I know, that's the only way to do it on the Pro. There might be a few workarounds but honestly I don't think they are worth the effort.
  3. DannySmurf macrumors 6502a

    Jul 7, 2005
    Agreed. This never used to be the case, but it's a fight to get a MBP to see a Windows USB stick with this generation. It will take much less time to just surrender an use a DVD.
  4. techmonkey thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jun 8, 2007
    I had to surrender and use a DVD. At first I got the dreaded "Select CD-ROM Boot Type" when using a Win7 64bit DVD. What a PITA! I found a solution at this thread

    I thought I would never get Win7

    With jumping through all these hoops, it sounds like my MBP has a EFI32 and the newer Macs have EFI64, which caused this issue. Does this mean that 64bit Win7 wont run as well as 32bit? Since I have 4GB of RAM in my MBP, I want to use Win7 64bit to fully utilize the RAM.
  5. Ccrew macrumors 68020

    Feb 28, 2011
    Can't just copy the ISO to a USB key or extract it to it and have it bootable.

    This is the easiest way, but need a Windows machine for the utility. Not really jumping through hoops..:

    Once you do it, just put the key in a safe place...

    Can be done with diskpart and a command line, but this tool simplifies things.
  6. DannySmurf macrumors 6502a

    Jul 7, 2005
    No, there's no problem running 64-bit Windows on these machines. Just installing is more of a pain than it needs to be.
  7. techmonkey thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jun 8, 2007
    Of course you cant...

    Have you actually installed Win7 via USB drive on a MacBook Pro successfully? I used MS tool thats in the link you posted (one of the many guides). Ive even used another guide to create a bootable USB using another method. None of them worked.
  8. shortcut3d macrumors 65816

    Aug 24, 2011
    The MBP EFI does not allow you to complete bootcamp without a disk. MBA and Mac mini bootcamp allow you to create and use Windows 7 USB install. You can do some EFI trickery to get the USB bootable. Getting through bootcamp is more difficult.

    I have a question about getting bootcamp to work when the OSX drive is external. Basically, I want to legitimately create a bootcamp partition on 100% of an internal SSD while booting from an external Thunderbolt SSD. Basically, the goal is to swap OSX and Windows after bootcamp install is complete to get an external Windows Thunderbolt SSD.
  9. Ccrew macrumors 68020

    Feb 28, 2011
    I've done it from a USB Stick from within Fusion on my MBP, where Fusion saw it as a bootable disc. I'll give it a try today, I always carry it with me. I personally don't do bootcamp as my machines all have SSD's and I'm a bit averse to allocating space I may not ever use. by running VM's I use what I use and the rest is fee to OSX . I have booted from the same disc on my Mini though, which are more temperamental than a MBP to USB boot and it was successful.

    You scoffed at the Idea of extracting the ISO out withot the secondary work, I commend you as any folks think that's all that's involved.
  10. grazykid macrumors newbie

    Mar 21, 2011
    you can install windows without the dvd using parallels. You have to format that partition to ntfs, using the installation of windows. then copy everything from the windows usb onto the bootcamp partition using the command prompt from the windows installation(with a command I cant remember right now[xcopy something]). then reboot while pressing the alt key and select windows and it will run setup from there and install on the same partition without formating.

    I've done it cause I don't have the superdrive installed.(optibayed)
  11. shootist macrumors regular

    Dec 8, 2011
    Your answer although correct for any Virtual Machine Program is totally incorrect for using the Boot Camp system.
    Which is what the OP asked.

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