New iMac as a monitor for XP Bootcamp on an old Air

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by david1974, Dec 6, 2011.

  1. david1974, Dec 6, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2011

    david1974 macrumors newbie

    Feb 13, 2009
    Hello all -
    Need your assistance getting an accurate answer on an Apple related issue. Trip to the Apple store (including speaking to 5 employees, 2 of whom were genius bar staff) did not provide the clarity/certainty I am after. More on that later.

    I have a work issued 11 inch Air (running XP via Bootcamp). I cannot boot the Apple OS, nor make any changes to the XP environment.

    My Air is an "older" model: 11 inch with mini-display port, not the "spark" Thunderwire port, but same size of course.

    I am thinking about buying an iMac, which would be dual purpose...second computer and monitor for my Air. But I am unsure if an iMac will do this smoothly with my Air (or which model can or can't do it).

    Let me tell you what I have done:
    - two visits to the Apple store
    - conversation #1 (yes, it will work...21 or 27 mention of Thunderwire or mini-display issue, no issues with XP on Bootcamp)
    - conversation #2 (yes, but 27 inch is ok that Air has mini-display and is using XP via Bootcamp)
    - conversation #3 (yes, but you need to buy an old model iMac that still has mini-display port, not firewire)
    - conversation #4 (no, it will not work with Bootcamp with any configuration)
    - conversation #5 (yes, will work with any 27 inch model...use mini-display to VGA (from Air), use Thunderwire to VGA (from iMac), and then use a male-male VGA to connect the two

    Apple has a knowledge base article on the topic, which offers yet another view. However only speaks to 2009 and 2010 models. I am unable to find a similar entry for current iMac models.
    Using a 27-inch iMac (Late 2009 or Mid 2010) as an external display

    Apple won't test any of this at the genius bar (well, the genius I had - conversation #4 above).

    Any thoughts?

  2. MendotaMike macrumors member

    Aug 1, 2011
    Twin Cities, MN
    Your plan will not work with a new iMac. The new iMac can only be used in target display mode with another computer that has thunderbolt video output. Display port video output, as on your old air, will not work. I just found this out the hard way. Bought a new iMac 27" planning to use it in target display mode with my Windows 7 PC, installed a brand new video card with a display port output, no dice.

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