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davemen davemen is offline
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Unhappy Dual Boot Vista & Mac OS X - 01-03-2009, 02:25 AM

I read the post by tonygoodchild in the FAQ on dual booting and it looks way, way too complicated.

Having done dual booting on other PCs, I can't believe that there isn't an easier way to do this?

Has anyone figured out a way to do this that doesn't take USB sticks, a PHD and several hours?

There's got to be a way to automate this?
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nvrmore100 nvrmore100 is offline
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Default Re: Dual Boot Vista & Mac OS X - 01-03-2009, 02:38 AM

The issue is that MBR based OSX booting is very very annoying. OSX is designed to run through GUID based disks. There is really little reason to use the Type11 installer stuff with MBR based booting of OSX, but its still handy for doing updates and such.
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davemen davemen is offline
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Default Re: Dual Boot Vista & Mac OS X - 01-03-2009, 07:10 AM

So if the Type11 stuff is less valuable for dual boot, should I go with iAtkos?
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blavalla blavalla is offline
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Default Re: Dual Boot Vista & Mac OS X - 01-03-2009, 07:28 AM

The reason tony's method was so complex is because he did not use a second computer for any of the steps. I achieved the same thing with the following:

1 other computer (macbook pro with bootcamp in my case)
1 external usb hard drive at least 14gb
vista disc
leopard disc

Essentially what I did is use my macbook pro to format the external hard drive with 3 partitions in an MBR scheme, one for the leopard installer (hfs, 8gb) one for the vista installer (fat32, 5gb) and one for boot-132 (fat32, 200mb).

I modified the leopard dvd as tony instructed to allow it to install on MBR partitions and imaged it to the leopard partition. I simply copied all the files of the vista disc to the vista partition. And I followed the syslinux method to get boot-132 on to it's own partition. At this point you have an external drive that can install vista, install leopard, and boot an installed copy of leopard with -f to run the mini script.

Next I booted off the external drive which gave me the boot-132 menu where I could choose either the vista installer, or the leopard installer. I chose the leopard installer first to use disk utility to partition the SSD into three partitions in an MBR scheme, the first one for the EFI partition, second one for leopard, and third one for vista. I then rebooted off the external drive again and installed vista. Finally, I rebooted off the external drive and installed leopard.

I then rebooted off the external drive one last time and booted my internal SSD leopard partition with -f. Once in leopard I modified the miniscript to remove two lines. One that created the /Volumes/EFI directory, and one that mounted the EFI partition to that directory. These need to be removed because the partition is not hidden in the MBR scheme and will already be mounted. After this I simply ran the miniscript and was all set.

Trust me, it sounds much more complicated than it is. Once you have the external drive with both installers on it the rest works just as you'd expect.

EDIT: Oh yeah, one last thing. VIsta can installed on GUID partition schemes, but I personally couldn't get this working how I'd expected. Feel free to experiment with it. Once you have your installers on an external drive you can easily re-install both vista and OS X various times to try different methods out.
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sircharles sircharles is offline
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Default Re: Dual Boot Vista & Mac OS X - 01-03-2009, 08:18 AM


I'm glad I saw your clearly-written explanation. I'm still waitin' on my mini9 (they've been "preparing for production" for a while now...), but I was generally thinking of following your plan. I've ordered the Ubuntu w/32Gig, bluetooth, and camera. My plan is to use my 60GB iPod (USB) to install XP and OSX with basically the method you described. A few questions:

1. On the SSD, I'm thinking of allocating 10G to XP (rarely use it, just wanna have it for the heck of it), 20G to OS X (main partition), and 1-2 for the EFI partition (is that too big, y'think?). Do these sound feasible?

2. I will use Disk Utility to restore the OS X install disc to a partition on the iPod. Then I will use unetbootin on XP (under Parallels) to make the boot-132 installer (Disk Utility wouldn't work for some reason). Finally, you said you just copied the Vista files over....can I do the same with my XP CD? I've only used XP/Windows under Parallels, so I'm not really certain of how to quickly make a bootable installer. I've done a lot of research, but I guess it's too much - there's a lot of conflicting instructions...

3. How did you set up which will OS will boot? I'd like to boot by default into OS X but of course have the option of somehow booting into XP...

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blavalla blavalla is offline
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Default Re: Dual Boot Vista & Mac OS X - 01-03-2009, 08:37 AM

well if you have the 32gb SSD it's really only about 29 after formatting, so you might want to keep that in mind. I don't think the EFI partition will need to be more than 200 or so mbs, I believe I have mine at 300 just to be sure.

I've never used unetbootin, but if that method works than go for it, the method I used is the one outlined here: ... to_install

As for making a bootable XP installer, that's a bit trickier. Unfortunately you can't just copy the files over like you can with Vista. This guide seems to cover all the steps you need, though I haven't tried it myself. ... thumb.html

As for which OS boots by default, the answer for me was none of them. With the method I outlined what actually boots by default is your EFI partition with the darwin bootloader. This gives you the options to boot Windows or OS X, but I couldn't for the life of me get one to boot by itself. The problem was that the Darwin bootloader will only automatically boot the partition that is set as active, and to get the whole type11/boot-132 method to work the active partition is the EFI partition itself. To get around this you could make the XP partition active, and use XP's boot loader to boot leopard, but this gets into some unfamiliar territory. Look here for more info on that:

Good luck!
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tonygoodchild tonygoodchild is offline
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Default Re: Dual Boot Vista & Mac OS X - 01-03-2009, 10:31 AM

As mentioned above the reason the method in the forums takes so long is that it assumes that you don't already have a Mac from which you can make your bootable USB stick, so you actually end up installing OS X twice - and the first time is onto an external drive just so that you can modify the retail disk image on the stick.

Unfortunately I don't have a seperate Mac (My old 12" G4 Powerbook is long dead) so this was an easy but long winded solution.

Dell Mini 9. 2GB RAM. 64GB Runcore SSD. 32GB SDHC. Novatel 3G WWAN.
Hacked MacBook Air SuperDrive. Real HD LED.
Quad booting OS X, Ubuntu 8.1, XP Pro and Windows 7.
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