Using a MBP as a Windows laptop

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by rpworth, Feb 8, 2010.

  1. rpworth macrumors newbie

    Feb 8, 2010
    Hi there,

    I'm interested in replacing my Sony Vaio BX with a (hopefully refreshed) MBP, as the hinges on my Vaio have cracked several times and I'm not going to keep replacing them on a 3 year old laptop. I would probably get another Sony, but the hinge problem combined with their terrible trackpads and relatively lame screen resolution has led me to consider purchasing a MacBook Pro to use primarily as a Windows laptop, since I love Windows 7 and cannot see myself switching to OS X due to various annoyances (particularly a window management system that becomes unusable with lots of windows open).

    My question is: are there any problems with the way Windows runs on bootcamp on MBPs that I should consider before making this purchase? Trackpad issues? Driver issues? Is it a totally stupid thing to do when there are other laptops out there that are considerably cheaper?

    Thanks for your advice.
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    You won't get anywhere near the advertised battery life using Windows on a MBP.
  3. phrint macrumors 6502

    Feb 8, 2006
    If you don't like OSX why waste the money buying a MBP you are going to use as a Windows machine? This makes no sense to me. Buy an HP Envy or a similar ripoff and you will be happy.
  4. Tex-Twil macrumors 68020


    May 28, 2008
    That's the only thing which disturbs me. The trackpad is not working as well as in OSX. Beside that I had no issues. I'm using Bootcamp for gameing only though.

  5. spinnerlys Guest


    Sep 7, 2008
    forlod bygningen
    Use MRoogle (my sig) to find many threads about issues with Windows 7 on Macs via Boot Camp.

    Also the window management is fine on Mac OS X, that's why there is Exposé.
    I currently have 18 windows in 12 open applications, and I just restarted a day ago due to an update. In ten days I will most probably have 20-25 open applications with 30 to 50 windows open, mostly Finder though (10-20).

    There are better ways to waste money though for a Windows 7 laptop. Look at the HP Envy series or some Alienware or another Sony.
  6. DJ90 macrumors member

    Feb 2, 2010
    same here. trackpad isnt an issue cos i only use windows for gaming, with gaming of course u use a mouse to game so yeh trackpad isnt an issue at all
  7. rpworth thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 8, 2010
    Specifically what type of issues do you have with the trackpad? If it's just that the multitouch gestures don't work or something, that's not a big deal. If it's actually hard to move the cursor around, that could be a problem...

    Does anyone have experience with just how many hours it gets? 5 hours? 4 hours? 50 minutes?
  8. Tex-Twil macrumors 68020


    May 28, 2008
    As others mentioned, Windows is a battery drainer.
  9. Arex macrumors newbie

    Sep 11, 2009
    It works pretty well. I have been using my Macbook Pro as a Windows 7 computer (no OS X on it) for months now. The comment about battery life is very true, but I guess some of this is due to the dual graphics card - I can't use the 9400 only the 9600. In this state I really do only get around 2 hours out of the battery; I could get double that during the brief period I did run OS X (it is pre built in battery, so I guess that is about right).

    It has improved since the update from boot camp to support Windows 7 a few weeks ago - this just solved the last few little annoyances.

    In terms of the trackpad - one finger use all works oK - you can also use the two finger scroll. No three of four finger gestures though.

    Just to answer the question about why buy a Mac to run Windows on - a year ago when I got this one, they were the only beautifully made laptops I could find (Sony, Dell, HP - no one else was anywhere near) and even now as I am thinking of replacing this laptop, I will probably still go for a Mac, just without the hybrid graphics card this time.
  10. vant macrumors 65816

    Jul 1, 2009
    You may want to try learning the window management system for OSX. It's actually one of the things that brought me onboard. Expose+4 finger multitouch = multitasking mofo.
  11. ryannazaretian macrumors 6502a


    Sep 21, 2008

    The trackpad is terrible to use in Windows in my opinion. It's smooth to move around, but it accidentally right clicks for me all the time when I want to left click, and vice versa. Scrolling works, but you have to set it down so it doesn't skip over things. There is no middle click. Tap to click should be left off because it causes problems. Impossible to use Autocad on Windows with the trackpad. If you're switching from a Sony to a Mac because of the trackpad, then you're making a mistake.


    My MacBook Pro is rated to get 5 hours of battery life in OSX. In Windows, I get about 1:30, so that's 30% of what it's rated for in OSX.

    If the current generation is supposed to get 7 hours in OSX, then I hope it can get around 2 hours. That's just a guess though based on my system.
  12. rpworth thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 8, 2010
    This is good to know. What graphics combination would you recommend on new MBPs for best combination of performance and battery life? I'm not as studied-up in the latest graphics cards as I should be.

    And yes, these are essentially the reasons for my interest in Macs -- they're just much nicer computers than anyone, including Sony, has managed to produce. After having a hunk plastic puzzle pieces, a one-piece aluminum body sounds pretty dang good.

    I've spent many years on both Mac and Windows, and know the window management system very well. Expose is pretty stopgap I think, but I suppose it's just a matter of personal preference. There are additional reasons I prefer Windows as well (ie I like the Win version of Office a lot better, and I have two Zunes, and I have expensive Windows licenses for Adobe products).
  13. Cali3350 macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2009
    I dont recommend it. You will get worse battery life and be paying A LOT for no extra incentive.

    The drivers for Macbooks on windows have improved dramatically lately but there are still lingering issues such as always on keyboard lights and finicky trackpad issues.

    Incidentally im with you on windows management. Windows 7 blows OSX out of the water in terms of multi-tasking.
  14. 406312 macrumors newbie

    Feb 6, 2010
    It makes perfect sense. Mac fanboys argue that their macs are of better build quality than typical PCs. SO what's wrong with running Windows on a stable PC?
  15. rpworth thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 8, 2010
    Thanks for trackpad info. I assume you don't have problems using the same trackpad is OSX? I know some people aren't fans of the clickypad. Is it right clicking when you want left click because it's detecting a two-fingered click?

    Trackpads on several of my past Vaios are beyond terrible. They're postage stamp sized and plagued with driver issues that sometimes cause the cursor to jump all over the screen. And they often don't work when waking up from sleep state, requiring complete reboot. Sometimes 2 or 3 times a day. So at this point any kind of clicks at all would be an improvement :)

    That reminds me, are there any sleep or hibernation issues with Windows on MBP? This seems to be an area where MANY Windows laptops get into trouble.
  16. hellric macrumors member

    Feb 8, 2010
    agreed about the trackpad in Windows 7, I rather use the mouse, while in OS X I prefer the trackpad.
    About battery, I can surf on wifi about 3h in Win 7 and 4h30 in Snow Leopard with my early 2008 MBP (new battery !).

    If I were you I'd go for a HP Envy or a high end Vaio, or even a Dell XPS 16.
  17. macuserx86 macrumors 6502a


    Jun 12, 2006
    If you're just going to use Windows, get a Thinkpad.

  18. ryannazaretian macrumors 6502a


    Sep 21, 2008
    Let's explain the trackpad in a different way. My girlfriend has a 13" MacBook. She tried using the trackpad in Windows on my laptop. She got frustrated and called it retarded. If you're coming to a Mac for a better trackpad, go elsewhere. Trust me, if I would have known that I would be running Windows more than OSX, I would not have gotten a Mac. It's all driver issues though, so one day Apple could release a perfect driver, but it would still be lacking a few things.

    Sleeping works fine for me.

    I recommend a Toshiba.
  19. 1appleAday macrumors regular

    Mar 27, 2008
    OP, I will join others to say that if you don't like OSX, then get something else. You will get better hardware for the money you spent. I think Dell Studio XPS is a decent Windows laptop. Check them out.

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