Mac Mini with Windows XP.


I hadn’t installed the Bootcamp and dual boot on the Mac Mini..The primary reason for my shift away from windows is to experience Mac fully, and having a dual boot would’ve tempted me to go back to windows for some common functions – When you have used an OS day in and day out for so long, you do get into a comfort zone and I needed to break that.

But, today I tried the bootcamp, and the experience was massively frustrating.

1. It just doesn’t feel the same. May be I am sort of used to Mac logic by now.

2.The ultra-cool Bluetooth Keyboard and the Mighty Mouse don’t feel the same with Windows XP. This is a major no no for me. I have come to love the small little Mac Keyboard, and can do everything I can do with the larger keyboards. But, with Windows, I miss many keys…  Ins/Del and so many other keys that Windows uses regularly. I do have a slim USB keyboard, but as I said, I might as well use my Regular PC.

3. While Windows zips through running on the Mac, there are some weird glitches. I had a bit of struggle to get the entire thing going. Getting the Bluetooth Kbd/Mouse wasn’t automatic, and when you switch on from ‘standby’  it takes a bit of time to recognize the keyboard, and it wasn’t recognizing the mouse at all. After a bit of messing around I figured it works only after you press the mouse once. This is not how it worked with OSX. Strange.

4. The Nvidia drivers and application messed up my screen and set it to 800×600 4bit mode. I wasted some half hour trying to figure what happened. Replacing the drivers didn’t work. I had to completely remove all drivers, reset the system and reinstall mac drivers from scratch. Ofcourse now it works.

5. Haven’t yet tried mounting the HFS but, apparently there is read support now with Snow Leopard. While that’s useful, I’d like to use the volume without the restriction. I think there are paid software, but don’t want to get there.

6. While I don’t like the Mighty mouse a lot, one nice thing I like is the side scrolling. And that isn’t supported under Windows.

7. I had put about 200GB for the Windows partition, but now I realize this isn’t useful at all. I think I’ll have to reinstall with perhaps a small 40-60GB partition, and use it in extreme circumstances only. Apparently Parallels can run a boot camp partitions within OSX. Perhaps that’s a better way to go. I was using virtual box, but, that’s not what I want.

Overall, I guess I’ll stick to OSX on Mac Mini. This system wasn’t meant to do Windows and it shows.

Any one who’s planning to buy a Mac Mini to do windows  –  Your money may be better spent on buying a regular PC (may be something like Dell Studio Hybrid, but then that’s not available in India as of  now).

Wonder what PC manufacturers are doing? Mac Mini has been around for 3 years now.. Not a single worthy competition!

————- LATE NIGHT UPDATE —————–

The Windows I had on Mac Mini Died. It is the Anti-virus I installed – AVAST, which works fine for me in all other windows system. Not even 24hrs of bootcamp and now It can only do safe boot, but every time I get back to regular boot it is hanging. And that does it for me. While I can retrieve this,  I don’t want waste time try to revive windows.  I’ll just throw this out and stick to having a virtual windows within Mac..

Sticking to Snow leopard is far easier and better! Perhaps I’ll give it one more try when Windows 7 is supported well on Mac Mini.

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