Need to run Windows software on Mac Mini. What are my options?

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by bsharrah, Feb 12, 2014.

  1. bsharrah macrumors member

    Nov 9, 2012
    I have a 2011 Mac Mini with an original 500g HDD and a 120g SSD that I installed recently. OS X and all apps are on the SSD and I only use the HDD for Time Machine. I also have a 750 HDD external that can be used for Time Machine.

    I need to run Office and Quickbooks on a PC (can't use Mac version). What are my most economical options here? I prefer not to mess with the SSD, but the HDD is open game (will just use the 750g for TM).
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
  3. bsharrah thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 9, 2012
    Thanks for the link and suggestion. It gave me a starting point with all of this.

    I think I am going to start by using Bootcamp Assistant to load windows to my 500g HDD, keep OSX on the SSD and use the external HDD for TM to keep the SSD backed up. I need to use Windows for Office and Quickbooks for school and would not use it for anything else.

    If I am using the most updated version of OSX, can I use Windows 7 Home? I read a couple comments where users received errors that they need Windows 8 or above. Also, do I need to use a full retail copy or can I use an OEM copy? The OEM copy would be purchased for this purpose (Not suggesting I use an OEM copy from another system).
  4. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

    Mar 4, 2013
    Boot Camp doesn't work that way. It needs to be installed on the same drive as OS X.
  5. bsharrah thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 9, 2012
    Really? Because Apple says this on their Boot Camp Help screen:

    "When you’re asked to create a Windows partition, specify a partition size. If you have multiple hard drives in your computer, you can select a different hard drive and create a single partition on that drive, so that the drive is solely used for Windows."
  6. xcodeSyn macrumors 6502a

    Nov 25, 2012
    Just to clarify, Boot Camp supports installation of Windows on internal drives, not on external or RAID drives as mentioned in the FAQ link. If your Mac has more than one internal drive, they would all be listed in Boot Camp Assistant as options to create/remove Boot Camp partition.

    You are right and you can install Windows on either of your internal drive.
  7. xcodeSyn macrumors 6502a

    Nov 25, 2012
    You can use 64-bit Windows 7 or 8 under the latest Boot Camp version. Either OEM or retail would work for your computer.
  8. mintfan7200 macrumors member


    Feb 18, 2014
    A great free option is VirtualBox , If you want to run windows apps like normal apps in Mac get these payed programs either Parallels or VMware All three are good . Do not get Windows XP because support is ending for it soon . Also do not get Windows 8 . Windows 7 is your best option .

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