remove vista drive and put in mac pro ... how do I boot to it?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Pessimistic1, Nov 9, 2009.

  1. Pessimistic1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2009
    #1
    I recently ran across a great deal on a Mac Pro. I have been a Windows user since about day 1 of windows. My windows machine is a Gateway with a 320GB SATA drive with Vista Ultimate installed. Is there a way to take this hard drive and mount it in my Mac Pro and be able to boot to it? There are a LOT of programs on that drive (windows) that I use for specialized tasks and I lose a LOT of TIME trying to find Mac equivalents and then learning to use them.

    Boot Camp on my Mac does not seem to want to work properly (although it does tell me what I need to do ... sort of). I just want to put my windows drive in my Mac and be able to boot to it. Can it be done? Any help will be appreciated.

    P.S. It's a Mac Pro 3.1, 2 2.8ghz quad core Xeon, 16gb DDR2 ram, Snow Leopard
     
  2. ildondeigiocchi macrumors 6502a

    ildondeigiocchi

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2007
    Location:
    Montreal
    #2
    It's worth giving it a try. Install the HDD in the Mac Pro. Upon startup hold down the ALT or "option" key and wait until the grey screen display multiple HDDs which it should if the vista drive is recognized. If it is click on the one NOT labeled Macintosh HD and you should be able to boot up fine since EFI supports backward compatibility with BIOS. I think it should work. ;)
     
  3. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #3
    An '08 will be able to boot Windows off one of the HDD bays. I've not been able to find a way to make it work off the ODD_SATA ports in the attempts made over this past weekend.

    I'm not sure it will work though, due to the Windows license (IIRC, it could attempt to check the system S/N with the S/N of the Dell). If it doesn't match, it could crap out.

    But there's other issues as well. The existing installation is for a different system, so all the drivers are different, including CPU and chipset (presumably).

    So I'd recommend making a backup (complete) for the Dell if you may continue to use it, and separate backup of non driver files you want to keep. Then make a clean installation in the new system. That way you can get it to boot, and run the BC disk to install the correct drivers for that system (assuming the license is a FULL license, not OEM). Not sure on Upgrade, as I've not used one (if it truly checks the original license for type or not; i.e. XP license as to OEM or FULL). Or if it would just allow you to install.

    Sorry about the confusion, but it seems like an experiment due to the details. But in general, you can get a separate drive for Windows to work on an HDD port (not an ODD port for a Windows boot disk). But it does need to be a fresh install IMO, to save problems with drivers, assuming it will boot at all due to the differing hardware.
     
  4. gugucom macrumors 68020

    gugucom

    Joined:
    May 21, 2009
    Location:
    Munich, Germany
    #4
    Lets discuss this first from a technical point of view. I will not talk about a backup because that was already covered.

    Your biggest technical risk to screw this up is having no USB due to not having a driver for the Intel 5000 chipset. If you have no USB you will never be able to run the Windows HDD because the Mac has no PS2 ports for the mouse and key board. In oder to get the drivers available copy the complete content of the OS X install DVD into a folder to your Vista desktop on the Gateway. The OS X install DVD has two images burned on. One is only visible in Windows. That is the one that you need to copy with Windows Explorer to your desk top. It is appoximately 400 MB. That way you will not depend on any peripheral device to work. You will have all drivers available as directly as possible.

    Then transfer the HDD and boot as described.

    If you actually get a mouse or keyboard working the very first thing you need to do before installing anything else is installing the chipset driver from the copy of your Leopard DVD on your desktop. It is in the drivers/Intel directory and you simply start the setup.exe file.

    Once that is installed you either run setup.exe from the Bootcamp folder or Bootcamp64.msi from the drivers/Apple folder, depending of the version (32-bit or 64-bit) you are running. This will take care of all your drivers. If there are any external devices like EyeTV receivers or RAID cards that you may want to transfer you will be on your own with drivers. An EyeTV driver will usually work out of the box. RAID cards will be a PITA as they will expect BIOS to work with and you will be running EFI64.

    Your activation will be cancelled as soon as you run Windows updates or go online. You will be given some time to renew it. Use the automated telefon procedure to renew your activation. When you are asked on how many machines you have installed your copy of Windows you must answer 1 machine. After this you cannot use the installation on the Gateway any more, so delete is as soon as everything runs. If the telefone is answered by a human operator tell him your motherboard died and you are using a replacement with a different chipset. He must accept that. Your Ultimate should ensure that both CPus will run.
     
  5. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #5
    I've run into it with a Full license, and was able to get it to install after recieving the code, but it was due to mulitple installs off the disk during experimentation (always the same board).

    But they'll do this even for an OEM license?
    :cool: If that's the case. :)
     
  6. gugucom macrumors 68020

    gugucom

    Joined:
    May 21, 2009
    Location:
    Munich, Germany
    #6
    There are two types of OEM licenses with different activation. The best version is called System Builder OEM. This is technically identical to a retail but it carries no 90 day Microsoft support.

    The other one is OEM recovery. That one relies on OEM hardware but it usually is only used in laptops.

    Chances are that this machine is using an SB Edition. Activation or activation renewal is not classed as a support activity. MS has to do this foc. As you are still using your original HDD you have not even violated their EULA which would BTW not be valid in the EU.

    If this is a OEM recovery version you may be screwed. The re activation is automatically done independend of MS services and relies on a mechanism that identifies OEM hardware components.

    In the worst case of hitting a recovery version you can still purchase an Ultimate SBE license, boot the new DVD and use the repair option to repair the Vista installation with a new license. I have purchased Vista Ultimate SBE versions for as little as 50$ on Ebay. They are not very popular, so the price is usually low.
     
  7. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #7
    I was under the impression the hardware check was used in OEM copies (all, so SB was included), prior to running the software check. So if the S/N's didn't match (board), you get locked out. At least in the US versions.

    I've not touched an OEM copy in some time though (XP Pro for personal use, and didn't try to transfer it at all). I've gone with Full licenses to avoid issues since Vista.
     
  8. Pessimistic1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2009
    #8
    Whew! OK y'all, I really appreciate all the help and advice. I "spaced" the drivers issue, etc., ... shoulda drank more coffee. What I ended up doing (and it is still a work in progress) is making a backup of my Mac HD with Time Machine ... made a clean install with Snow Leopard and got boot camp to work ... then installed a corporate version of XP Pro (I wouldn't call it a smooth install either) ... shut things down ... installed Vista disk in drive bay ... restarted and went through the process of getting to my XP installation and then "upgraded to Vista" (an oxymoron if ever I've heard one and I'm rethinking my opinion about the ease of install for the XP partition :rolleyes:) and am now in the process of backing up my Vista (gateway drive for all my files and such) ... then I'm going to format, then .... ummm ... ummm ... probably try a direct install then of Windows 7.

    It SHOULD WORK right??
     
  9. gugucom macrumors 68020

    gugucom

    Joined:
    May 21, 2009
    Location:
    Munich, Germany
    #9
    SBE is absolutely original Microsoft without any mod by a specific HW or SW vendor. Believe me, it is technically identical with Retail world wide except for the support issue. The distribution channel is designed to give individual or small scale system builders access to to a simple license deal. When you see SB or SBE in the US its the same package except for languages as in the the EU. Of course MS do not advertise it because it is such a smart deal with only 33-50% of the retail price.
     
  10. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #10
    That I realize.

    I figured it wouldn't be a problem unless the user tries to place it on a different system, as after the first installation, the Copy Right/License app reads the system's S/N, and stores it on a database kept by MS (not just a counter for each licence # that updates o MS's site for each install). So after installing on a second (different) system, a comparison would be made, not match, and force a fail.

    Your explaination that you got a new board would work (phone call to MS). Though I don't know if it would work more than once, maybe twice.

    Definitely a cheaper way to go, and has been for some time. :)

    But with the OP's copy being vendor specific (Dell), I didn't think it would work.

    I was under the impression the Dell versions wouldn't boot as the MP's S/N is nowhere near the format used by Dell if the drive was transferred (a feature added by Dell). :cool: if that's not the case, and it will work. :D
     

Share This Page