Windows without disc? on macbook air

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by jc8081, Jun 11, 2011.

  1. jc8081 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2011
    #1
    I know i could hook up a cd drive but dont have one and really dont want to have to buy one.
    I didnt get my macbook air yet but when i do is there a way to install windows without the disc? thanks
     
  2. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #2
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_2 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8H7 Safari/6533.18.5)

    I'm on my phone, but there is a long thread with "without SuperDrive" somewhere in the title.

    Different Macs require different solutions, but there are three general approaches.

    Boot from USB with rEFIt.
    Use VMWare/Parallels to do the initial loading of the files to your Boot Camp partition.
    Create a "throwaway" partition on your internal drive for the install files.

    B
     
  3. Xgm541 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    #3
    this is a copy + paste from a blog I found instructions on.

    source - http://kmwoley.com/blog/?p=345

    After you create this bootable USB, install rEFIt (http://refit.sourceforge.net/) and start the boot camp assistant in your OS X install. It will create a partition of the size you want, and ask you to restart to install. Put the bootable USB stick in. Once you restart the rEFIt menu will pop up. If it doesnt restart again. It can take up to 2 restarts for rEFIt to show. When you see the menu you will have 2 options, OSX and Windows (with a USB icon on it), select the windows and go through the process. Dont take out the USB stick untill the install has completed (you see a windows desktop). Also, everytime it asks you to restart, make sure you re-select the windows icon in rEFIt.


    For drivers, if you have a large enough USB stick, they can fit right on there. In OSX boot camp assistant, click the option that asks to download the windows boot camp drivers. Once that is done, it will ask you to save. Save it to your desktop then transfer to your USB drive. Boot back into the windows partition, insert the usb drive, and load setup.exe from the bootcamp folder to install drivers.

    Personally, I havent removed the rEFIt install, but once you have installed windows 7 you can remove it by deleting the refit folder on your osx drive and bootcamp will automatically see your windows installation next time you boot up. If it doesnt, press and hold the option key on your keyboard while you boot to force your mac to go into the boot selection screen.


    For a macbook air, I slipstreamed my version of windows 7 to take out a lot of unnecessary components. My MBA is used for gaming on the windows 7 partition so things like remote desktop are not necessary. My installation file went down to <1GB and the installed size was 5.05GB.

    I hope this made the least bit of sense...
     
  4. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #4
    Just to point out that rEFIt doesn't work for this purpose on all Macs all the time, so YMMV.

    Definitely give it a shot! First without rEFIt and then with, but don't assume that it will work for you unless you have hard evidence that someone with the same model Mac and exact version of Windows made it work that way.

    B
     

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