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Boot Camp

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Boot Camp is a software assistant made available by Apple Inc. that assists users in installing Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2 Home or Professional, or Windows Vista on Intel-based Macintosh computers. Boot Camp guides users through non-destructive re-partitioning (including resizing of an existing HFS+ partition, if necessary) of their hard drives and creating a CD image with device drivers for Windows. In addition to device drivers for the hardware, the CD includes a Windows control panel applet for setting the primary operating system.


[edit] Overview

Boot Camp is not a virtualization tool, which would allow the Windows and Mac OS X operating systems to run concurrently; instead, the computer must be rebooted to use either operating system. Holding down the option key at startup will bring up the boot manager, allowing the user to choose which operating system to boot. When using a non Apple keyboard, the 'alt' key will usually perform the same action.

Boot Camp requires that users upgrade the firmware on early Intel-based Macintosh computers to the latest version, which includes the boot-loader and BIOS emulation module required to get the EFI based machines to boot legacy operating systems.

Further, Apple does not officially support Boot Camp or Windows nor does it sell copies of Windows at its stores. The technology is currently beta but scheduled for release at the same time as Mac OS X v10.5. It is to be included in Apple's new operating system.

[edit] Requirements

Apple's Boot Camp FAQ lists the following requirements:

  • Mac OS X Tiger v10.4.6+
  • 10GB free hard disk space (15GB is recommended for Vista)
  • An Intel-based Mac with up-to-date firmware
  • An available writable CD or DVD
  • A full version of Microsoft Windows XP Home or Professional with Service Pack 2, or
  • Windows Vista Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, or Ultimate.

[edit] Unsupported devices

As of version 1.2, the driver disk created by Boot Camp allows Windows XP and Vista hardware support for the majority of a Mac's system components, but it does not currently support the following:

[edit] Other operating systems

The documentation from Apple states that Windows XP Service Pack 2 or Windows Vista is requisite for a Boot Camp installation; however, it should be noted that other operating systems have been installed successfully. Other versions of Windows, such as Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, and Windows Server 2003 have been installed. Further, various Linux distributions have been installed, as well as GNU OpenSolaris's Nexenta OS (Alpha 6 Elatte), which could open the door to booting other GNU variants.

The biggest issue when installing operating systems not officially supported by Boot Camp is a lack of proper drivers. The driver issue is more difficult to overcome in non-Windows OSes since Apple writes its Boot Camp drivers specifically for 32-bit Windows XP SP2 and Windows Vista. Therefore even 64-bit Windows operating systems encounter difficulties with full driver support in Boot Camp. The hardware used in most Intel Mac's have drivers available for various OSes, however Apple specific hardware such as the built in iSight camera, Apple bluetooth, Apple track pad and various other software enhancements such as Apple keyboard and brightness controller that are packaged with Boot Camp are written solely for 32-bit Windows XP SP2 and 32-bit Windows Vista.

[edit] External links

This article was started using a Wikipedia Camp article
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