Installing Windows on Mac
When storage issues makes things worse
Installing Windows can sometimes be an headache when you are having a PC, well try installing Windows on Mac having 128 GB of storage with only a GB of free space left. Well that’s my system and i pretty much was left with no other option to install Windows on an external hard disk and boot into Windows using it.
Well sounds easy ? Well its not. Windows installer doesn’t allow you to install a copy of it on external hard disk unless you have an enterprise edition of it. Something windows calls a “feature” for enterprise users even though there is no need for extra software to boot from external hard disks.
Solution? Manually copy the files that installer copies on to your system when you install windows. A Windows installer consists of a “WIM” file in it which is literally a copy of unsigned files that needs to be copy to your system. The installer literally signs the files and copies it on to your system.
There are software such as Windows to USB that can do that task for you but for some unexplainable reasons that software doesn’t work on Macs. So, how do you sign the files after you copy them ?
There is a command called “wism” in command prompt that makes a signed copy of the wim files onto the destination disk. Known y the name of Windows Deployment Tool, it is used to create images of the operating systems into multiple destinations at the same time for quicker deployment. Simple commands and all that’s left is to make the device bootable. Copy the boot files using boot repair command in Command Prompt and viola it’s complete. Windows boots into Mac from an external hard disk.
But there are some few concerns that i feel should be addressed.
- Please increase the size of hard disks in base models of Mac Apple. Please !! It’s so hard using a laptop with 128 GB of storage,
- The inbuilt software in Mac’s to download support drivers is so crappy and it literally took me a day just to download the drivers. As a alternative please allow users to download the drivers from support website as before.
- Please allow users to install on external hard disks Microsoft. It does not require any extra work from your side. It seems that you just put extra effort to prevent users from installing on external hard disks.
Reference Blogs which i referred to install windows.
- Creating Boot Files – https://fossbytes.com/create-bootable-usb-without-software-windows-10-using-command-prompt/
- ImageX(WISM)- https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj980441(v=winembedded.81).aspx
- WinToUSB – https://www.easyuefi.com/wintousb/
- WIM – https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/dd861280.aspx