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The complete guide to running Windows on a Mac

How to get Windows 7 set up on your Apple computer

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Step 4: The Windows 7/8 Setup

Once you've booted from USB or DVD, you've basically survived the most "difficult" part. I won't bore you with the details of how to install Windows on your machine, it's the same old procedure as ever.

Both Windows 7 and Windows 8's setup steps are fairly simple, just make sure to select the "Boot Camp" drive during setup and let it run its course.

Note for Windows 8 early adopters

The Intel HD 3000 Graphics on the 2011 MacBook Airs and Mac Minis have some problems with the built-in Windows 8 drivers which makes the lower half of the display flicker and indistinguishable right from the setup. As you might imagine, that makes it kind of hard to work with or even finish the setup!

The easiest solution is to plug in an external display, which shouldn't be affected by the glitch. If that's not an option, you need to use your mouse and/or touchpad to guess where to click next on the Windows 8 installer.

Once you've gotten past that small hurdle, download the latest Intel HD 3000 Graphics drivers for Windows 7 and unzip the file, because you're going to need to do a bit of driver tinkering in order to get your graphics to work.

Open up the subfolder "Graphics" and look out for the "igdlh.inf" (32-Bit) or "igdlh64.inf" (64-Bit) file. Open it and replace the line "no install on Win8" with the entire paragraph you see under the line "[IntelGfx.NTamd64.6.0]".

Save it! First, run the Boot Camp 4.0 driver installer in order to install all the basic drivers (see below for more) and then run the "setup.exe" found in the Intel drivers folder, if that fails try running it using compatibility mode and with admin rights. This should make the Intel drivers install correctly and get rid of the annoying display bug!

Step 5: The 4 Most Important Settings for Running Windows on the Mac

After installing Windows, there are a couple of necessary (and optional) steps that make the Windows on a Mac experience just better:

Install Boot Camp: Without the boot camp driver, your Mac is next to unusable since Windows doesn't provide drivers for most of your Mac's hardware!

Here's how to fix that. Insert the Boot Camp 4.0 CD, DVD or USB drive that you downloaded earlier and simply run "Setup.msi". Windows 8 users, again, need to perform some tinkering (which I describe below).

Done? Reboot! Now your Wi-Fi adapter, LAN, the graphics card, Bluetooth, the iSight camera, the sound chip and the trackpad should work properly.

Make Windows your default OS: You're going full Win on Mac? Then let's make Windows 7 or 8 the default operating system, so you don't need to hold down the option key on your Mac to enter Windows: Right-click on the Boot Camp icon in your tray, select "Boot Camp Control Panel" and just click on "BOOTCAMP - Windows". Hit "Apply".

Enable Tap to Click: If you're using a MacBook and just can't stand to press down on the trackpad, just select "Tap to Click" from the Boot Camp options menu.

Sound volume: Here's a weird bug that I've encountered on literally ALL my Macs under Windows and that still persists on my latest purchase, the 2011 MacBook Air. By default, the sound volume of all movies (iTunes, DVD, AVI, MKV, etc.) is way too low, both coming from the speakers and the headphone jack. The solution: Go to "Control Panel", click on "Hardware and Sound", head over to "Sound" and right click on your sound chip.

Jump to the "Enhancements" tab and check "Loudness Equalisation". As weird as it sounds, this actually boosts the volume of all your movies noticeably.


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