holy crap, it took a bit of time but last night i was able to install windows xp x64 on my mac pro. i guess the first question is why do it? well for me it was pretty simple…
i like gaming every now and then… ok maybe a little bit more now than then. sadly, a couple of the games i like are not ported over to mac so since i have rid myself of pc’s over the years i run boot camp.
well, why xp64 then?
simple prior to last night i was running boot camp with xp pro sp2. but funny thing is i never seemed to have enough ram. well come to find out that even though my mac pro has 10gigs of ram (yes i said 10) windows xp only saw 1.9gigs. this isn’t caused by the windows cap of 4gigs, it is caused by a firmware issue with boot camp. the only way to get your mac to see any more ram is to install windows xp or vista 64 bit.
so should be simple eh? one would think.
well, apple doesn’t include any 64bit drivers for windows with boot camp (well the version i have and can get anyway) so here is what i had to do…
1. kill the current install of windows
i went into the boot camp assistant and killed the partition xp was installed on. thinking i could just reinstall… well it killed the partition but when i tried to repartition the drive (with the same size as the last one) it kept getting fatal kernal errors and i had to hard reboot. i rebootd but my drive now appears like it has way more used space that it did. [scratches head]
well i try to use disk utilities but since its the active drive i had to toss the leopard installer disk in reboot and use the disk utilities on there to fix the size issue. tada space comes back.
2. buy a copy of iDefrag
so i buy a copy of iDefrag and install it and decide instead of making a bootable cd i would just defrag drive #3 which is barely used at all. also if something goes south i don’t end up killing any important data. i run iDefrag in it’s default settings and it takes about 3hrs to compact the data on the drive. worked like a charm… and they say leopard does its on defrag and compacting – whatever ill stick with iDefrag from now on.
3. run boot camp assistant
now since i have 3 macs at home i wasn’t worried about finding the drivers for xp 64 bit since i could hop on one of two other macs. but before installing xp 64it i would recommend getting the 64 bit drivers for the following devices:
4. Intel Chipset
i tossed the drivers on a usb drive.
after you have them all start partitioning the drive you want to put windows xp64 on. it should take just a few minutes then prompt you to pop in the xp x64 install disk. run the installer as normal, just make sure you have a full version. about 30 mins later and two reboots windows xp 64bit will be installed on your mac pro.
4. install the drivers
this part took me forever since now is really when i started looking for the drivers since i had really no idea for sure what was going to work and what wasn’t. it took a bit of sniffing but i found everything. ill be posting some links on what drivers i installed later.
1. installed the intel chipset driver and then rebooted
2. installed the video driver (ati x1900 for me) then rebooted (actually before installing ATI Driver I would recommend installing .Net Framework 2.x for 64bit I had an issue and needed to uninstall the video drivers, install the framework and reinstall the video drivers.)
3. installed avast anti virus because i didnt want windows online without AV then rebooted
4. installed the intel network drivers and rebooted
5. then updated avast av and rebooted
6. next came the reltek audio drivers and rebooted
7. i went to windows update ad installed all the high priority updates (33 of them for me) and rebooted once again…
8. lastly installed windows xp x64 sp2 this took about 1 hour then again rebooted.
by now it was 3am and i needed some sleep…
after 4.5hrs of sleep – this morning everything seems to work fine, i don’t really care about bluetooth so i didn’t install drivers for that. i dont really need the keyboard drivers either as i use a logitech g15 gaming keyboard while in windows (just need to install those drivers). currently im installing one of the games i play online and that is going smoothly.
ill append this post shortly with links to the drivers i used.
Here are some links to the drivers:
Matt is a Systems Development Director for a multinational franchise. Matt has lived and worked in Hawaii, Chicago, South Florida and currently resides outside of Atlanta. He enjoys his hobbies including Technology, Gadgets/EDC, Fountain Pens, Wetshaving, Clocks, Antiques & Coffee. He even roasts his own coffee weekly.