problem installing Windows 7 64-bit on Mac mini

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by MPete1980, Aug 17, 2010.

  1. MPete1980 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2010
    #1
    I'm trying to set up Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit on my Mac mini (bought in April 2009). When I use VirtualBox on Mac OS X, I have absolutely no problem installing Windows 7 64-bit in a new virtual machine.

    However, I want to run it Windows 7 natively on my Mac mini.

    So when I insert the Windows 7 DVD and reboot my Mac, holding the C key down so as to boot from DVD, then it does seem to be reading the DVD, but all I get is a light gray screen. I then hit the Return key, and it does seem to do even more. Still the screen stays entirely gray.

    I have the impression that it behaves like it does with VirtualBox, except the screen stays gray all the time. When I use VirtualBox, the first thing that happens is that it prints "Hit any key to boot from CD or DVD" (or something like that). When I do hit a key (e.g. Return), then it continues printing "Setup is loading" (or similar) and loads more stuff from the DVD for about 90 seconds.

    So it really seems to be that it does just that when using it natively (without VirtualBox), just the screen stays gray.

    Any ideas?
     
  2. Grannyville7989 macrumors 6502a

    Grannyville7989

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2010
    #2
    Instead of holding the C key, have you tried hold the Alt Key and selecting the disc from the boot menu. That's how I usually what I press when installing Windows on my laptop.

    If you're going through Boot Camp, the usual case is after you've assigned the partition size you want for Windows to be on, you're given the option to restart the laptop and begin the installation of Windows and that takes care of booting fromt the DVD which gives you the "Press any key to boot from CD or DVD" screen.
     
  3. MPete1980 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2010
    #3
    I am not currently using Boot Camp. Right now I am running Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard) as the sole operating system on my Mac mini. I wish to replace it by Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, for the moment anyway. That may sound strange, to run only Windows on a Mac, but I have reasons for wanting to do that.

    I really wonder why I get a gray screen all the time. Setting up Windows XP on my mini (again as the sole OS) always worked just fine. :confused:

    Any help will be much appreciated!
     
  4. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #4
    Boot Camp is three things:

    1. Boot Camp Assistant (the partitioning tool you are not using)
    2. The boot loader that comes up when you hit Alt/Option (which Granny suggests you use) and lets you boot "legacy OSes"
    3. The driver package (which you will like to use).

    Fine if you don't want OS X on the internal drive. You are better off keeping it around in some form though (If for nothing else for any firmware updates which can only be applied from OS X). So if you have an external you can dedicate to it, just use CCC or SuperDuper to clone off your current install to a fully bootable external.

    Second: The $29 Snow Leopard upgrade is worth it if just for the Boot Camp 3.x drivers for Windows.

    B
     
  5. MPete1980 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2010
    #5
    Thanks for the explanation. Actually using the Alt/Option key as per Grannyville7989's advice did work!:D Thanks very much!

    balamw -- if I completely delete Mac OS X 10.5 from my mini and replace it with Windows 7, will I still be able to press the Alt/Option key on startup as I just did, so as to choose whether I want to boot from CD/DVD vs. from the internal hard disk?

    I'm asking as I might sometimes want to run Linux off of a CD on my Mac.
     
  6. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #6
    Yes. It's a function of the firmware.

    I still recommend you keep an external USB drive around with Mac OS X ready to boot.

    B
     
  7. MPete1980 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2010
    #7
    Thanks balamnw.:)

    So that means that even if I completely erase my hard drive (or if the hard drive fails), then I can still boot any bootable CD or DVD, including legacy OSes such as Windows XP or Windows 7? Is that correct?
     

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