Running Windows on MBA's 128 GH SSD


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 18, 2014
Running Windows on MBA's 128 GB* SSD [Sorry for the typo]

I am planning to buy the MBA, and plan on being with this laptop way into the future. I say this as I'll be coming from a $250 basic Acer Desktop which lasted 6 years.

Knowing this and by taking everyone's advice, I'll get the 8 GB RAM on it, however the laptop offers only 128 SSD.

My use is to surf the web on multiple tabs, YouTube, run Civilization 5, or similar games, student work, downloading and streaming all sorts of movies and TV shows.

Also as I am a Financial Economics student, there might come a time (and it is close) that some financial software might not be compatible with Mac, so I would run windows along with Mac's OSX on the MBA.

My question is that is 128 Gig memory sufficient to handle two different operating systems? I will buy an external hard drive, but is MBA with only such limited memory and a lower processing speed capable of handling both side by side?

This scenario is purely speculation, but I should know my options knowing that I am investing a little north of a grand.

The dude at the Apple store told me to just to go with the non-retina Macbook Pro, and I could run Windows anytime I want smoothly due to higher speed and memory.

I believe non-retina MBP does not run the civilization 5 I believe, is this true?

All in all, should I stick with the MBA's 128 SSD or is the older MBP a safer option?

And rMBP or the upgraded MBA with more memory isn't an option for me due to monetary reasons.


macrumors 6502a
May 31, 2007
The Garden State
128GB is going to be very tight for both OSX and Windows. I'm sure it's doable, but there's not going to be much room left for apps.


macrumors 65816
Jul 12, 2012
- Windows will require a minimum of 25GB (So plan 25-50GB)
- Add an additional 4GB or 8GB for the Sleepimage (same as RAM size)
- 20GB+ for OS and basic Apps


macrumors Core
Feb 9, 2008
The non-Retina MBP is old as crap. Okay maybe only a year old, but it's the only Mac portable that wasn't updated.

Contrary to what many believe, the folks who sell stuff at the Apple Store aren't really all that knowledge (by my standards anyways). The new MacBook Air has faster graphics, memory, and storage. The display resolution on the 11" MBA is higher, and even more so on the 13" MBA. The battery life is even in the same playing field.

That said you should be fine with a 128GB SSD for dual booting as long as you manage your space well.

The processor is more than capable.

You won't be able to put a lot of movies, photo, and other media on the internal drive with both operating systems. If you're back home you can put all those on an external drive.

I've friend who has the old 11" MBA with only 2GB of RAM and a 64GB SSD, and he dual boots fine doing his work. 128GB is good if you manage your space well.

Good luck.


macrumors 6502
Jun 22, 2009
If you plan on running Windows on your MBA 13" with 128GB only, I recommend using the PNY STOREdge. 128GB SDXC for $79 on Amazon and BH right now. Use that for files, and that will alleviate some space on your internal SSD. Better than having to lug around an external drive.

Right now you can pull a refurb 13" from Apple for $929. Thats 15% off retail, but base configuration.


macrumors newbie
Feb 27, 2014
In the beginning of the year I got an 11”MBA with 8GB ram & 128GB drive- same spec’s as what your looking at.

On the Mac side I run all out of the Box Mac software plus MS Office 2011 for Mac, FireFox, Thunderbird, VLC, YTD.
I download all my Biz email from my exchange server to outlook to have off line and do the same with Thunderbird for personal email -

I also run VM Fusion with Win 7, full MS Office 2013 for Win., again downloading emails to outlook., I also have Visio installed

After a couple of months of use I still have 60GB free

Note: I have a 32 GB Patriot Autobahn USB drive ($25) that barely sticks out and I use that for my iTunes media, so far about 25GB used-
Even if I didn't use the USB drive i'd have about 35GB free

As DmbShn41 stated, if your getting a 13” MBA using the SD slot is the way to go and if needed you can double you store for very little when/if you need it


macrumors newbie
Mar 10, 2014
Why not a New 128GB MiniDrive

You should get a new 128GB MiniDrive Air. It won't stick out and will never eject when you shut down the computer, or the computer goes to sleep (which happens with our adapter drives as well as Nifty MiniDrive adapters). The new 128GB MiniDrive runs just as well as the PNY StorEdge the chips we have sourced are premium. Anything you can do with the PNY StorEdge you can do with one of the the new MiniDrive 128GB line, and this will sit flush in your MacBook Air, Pro and Retina 15" (retina 13 model out in a couple weeks)! Check it out you can save $15 with coupon code THRIFTY15 if you purchase direct from MiniDrive site and or free US shipping on Amazon orders until the end of this month.

Pic of 128GB MiniDrive in a MacBook Air 13"



macrumors member
Mar 24, 2013
I have a 2013 11" base model Air. I typically run a screen share to my MacMini, Win 8 VM and the normal OS at the same time just fine. Mavericks compresses the memory, and I have never had a worry about anything. The only stutter I may have once in a while is network lag from screen sharing. All my files are in the cloud. I personally get along just fine with 128GB. I also keep around 25% free so I don't "feel" the SSD doing it's house cleaning tasks.

A Windows 8 (which I love) VM takes around 15Gb with the OS and a handful of Windows Market games. It can be done if you aren't loading every game that you own on your Mac.