Running Bootcamp off a USB SSD?

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by theycallmetc, Jan 5, 2015.

  1. theycallmetc macrumors newbie

    Feb 8, 2013
    Lately I've been running into some storage problems with my rMBP, so I started looking into some portable solution I can install my Bootcamp partition on and plug it in if necessary. I found portable USB 3.0. SSDs like the Corsair Voyager GTX, Visiontek and Mushkin Ventura Ultra. Essentially, USB flash drives with SSD controllers.

    Is it feasible to install and run my Bootcamp partition on one of these for a pocketable on the go solution? Anyone used these products before?

    I also considered a Jetdrive Lite, but these are much faster and well, my SD card reader is super finicky (as is pretty much every SD reader I've seen on other Macbooks I've owned). I'd rather use USB 3.0.
  2. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    Yes you can.

    I do that myself on my 960GB Transcend JetDrive SSD.

    Connect external drive to Windows VM. You must have a Windows VM in VMware/Parallels.

    What you need:
    install.wim file (obtain this from your Windows ISO)

    Open elevated cmd.exe

    Note: All commands aren't case sensitive, including pathway to files.

    Type diskpart
    Type list disk
    Take note of the disk you want to select
    Type select disk 1 (if your disk is Disk 1)
    Type clean
    Type convert gpt
    Type create partition EFI size=100
    Type format quick fs=fat32 label=EFI
    Type assign letter=S
    Type create partition primary
    Type format fs=ntfs quick label=W2G (or any other name you wish for label)
    Type assign letter=E
    Type exit

    Open up File Explorer. In your C drive, create a new folder named WIN2GO.
    Put the install.wim file in this folder

    Back in cmd.exe:
    Type dism /apply-image /imagefile:C:\WIN2GO\install.wim /index:1 /applydir:E:\ (this process will take quite a while)
    Type E:\Windows\System32\bcdboot E:\Windows /s S: /f UEFI

    Restart your entire Mac. After the chime, hold down Option and when prompted to select your boot drive, select EFI Boot.

    Proceed installation normally.

    After installation, install Boot Camp drivers.
  3. EmptySet macrumors newbie

    Apr 13, 2007
    Type create partition EFI size=100
    Type create partition primary

    I'm wondering if you have any tips for me. If I create the first partition, my machine won't let me create the second partition. I wondered if maybe my JetDrive just won't permit multiple partitions. I've also retraced the steps and just created the partition primary. I was able to make it through all of the steps without issue. But when I reboot, it can't find my JetDrive as bootable to continue the installation.

    I'm trying to accomplish this all by using a BOOTCAMP Win8.1 installation. Is that possibly problematic?

    Also, I'm doing this on a 13" 2013 MacBook Air if that's of any consequence. Thanks in advance.

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