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How do I get Windows 7 on MB-13" w/no disc drive

1755 Views 8 Replies Latest reply: Jun 18, 2013 3:00 PM by LowLuster RSS
wytehorses Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Jun 18, 2013 12:16 PM

I have a late 2012 MacBook Pro 13" Retina - no disc drive.


All my CS Adobe programs for work are in PC version.


I want to enable BootCamp so i can do my work of digital imaging.


I'm going crazy!!


I have a PC w/ Windows 7, but when i try and create a Windows image from the control panel onto a flash drive it gives me an error msg (yes, I did format the flash drive first).


So, problem #1, I need Windows 7 or 8 on a flash drive (where, when, how)


Problem #2, once it is on a flash drive (if that is even possible!) is the BootCamp partition even worth it? I hear lots of problems in these forums.


OR... can i purchase an older version (say CS3) of photoshop and download it to a flash drive?? The CD is no use to me since I do not have a CD drive.


HELP!!!! I got the mac to be easier, but so far I'm not getting my work done for weeks....I'm ready to sell it and go back to PC.


Sheryl Yazo

MacBook Pro with Retina display, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.4)
  • Ralph Landry1 Level 7 Level 7 (28,815 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 18, 2013 12:21 PM (in response to wytehorses)

    If you create a Windows image from an installation on a PC you get a machine or OEM copy that you cannot install under BootCamp.  To do that you will have to purchase the retail version from MicroSoft, in this case do so by download so you can create the BootCamp partition and then download Windows to that partition.


    You can also buy an inexpensive DVD drive to use for software installation.

  • BobTheFisherman Level 6 Level 6 (10,580 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 18, 2013 12:43 PM (in response to wytehorses)

    When you run Bootcamp Assistant select the option to read the documentation. It explains how to install Windows on your model computer that has no disk drive.

  • Ralph Landry1 Level 7 Level 7 (28,815 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 18, 2013 1:46 PM (in response to wytehorses)

    An external DVD drive is relatively inexpensive and will give you the option for future software installs to use CDs or DVDs.

  • Bf109 Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 18, 2013 2:29 PM (in response to wytehorses)

    I have the 15" MacBook Pro Retina and installing Windows 7 via Bootcamp was a breeze. I own the Windows 7 Upgrade on disc. Basically to activate Windows 7 on the Bootcamp partition, you have to install Windows 7 twice. Here are the steps that I followed.


    An external Superdrive is NOT required. This does require another computer with Windows installed on it though.


    On a computer running Windows do the following:


    Step 1: Download the Windows 7 iso file from this link: html

    Make sure to download the version that matches your license ( if you already own Win7 and choose the 64-bit download)


    If you already own a valid Windows 7 license then there is no need to purchase another disc/license code

    Either a Windows 7 Full or Windows 7 Upgrade license can be used. Only the licenses differ as the iso files are all the same.


    Step 2: Download the Windows USB/DVD Mounting tool to mount the iso that you downloaded onto your flash drive


    After following the directions you are ready to begin your installation on your Mac


    On the Mac which you are installing Windows on do the following:


    Step 3: Plug the flash drive into your Mac and launch the bootcamp installer. Follow the directions and install the Windows support files onto another usb flash drive. If you do not have one present you can always return and download the support files.


    Step 4: On the Windows 7 installer choose the custom (advanced) install option. After that select your bootcamp partition (it should say bootcamp) and click Drive Option (advanced). Click format. Make sure you have your bootcamp partition selected to prevent the accidental deletion of your primary OSX partition. Proceed with the rest of the installer.


    Step 5: Follow the installer until you are prompted to insert the license key. DO NOT ENTER THE LICENSE KEY AND CLICK CONTINUE. After Windows is sucessfully installed fire up the Windows installer from the flash drive from the windows desktop. Go through the installer again this time choosing Upgrade instead of Custom (Advanced). Once Windows installs again, proceed to activate Windows manually from the Control Panel. After putting in your license code, the activation may fail and prompt you to activate using Microsofts phone activation system. If so follow their directions and you should be good to go.


    The above steps worked well for me. Let me know if you have any questions.

  • LowLuster Level 6 Level 6 (11,795 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 18, 2013 3:00 PM (in response to wytehorses)

    Buy any brand external dvd drive that connects to the computer by usb port. It will work with your mac. It does not have to have the apple name on it to work with a mac. I use a asus external dvd drive and a bare toshiba notebook sized dvd drive that I converted to connect to a usb port. Both work on both on my mac computers.


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