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Install Windows on your Mac with Boot Camp

Install Windows on your Mac with Boot Camp

Boot Camp helps you install Microsoft Windows on your Mac. After you install, you can restart your Mac to switch between macOS and Windows.

Before you begin

Make sure that you have what you need:
  • Enough free disk space to create a Boot Camp disk partition* with a minimum size of 64GB. 128GB is recommended for the best experience.
  • An external keyboard and mouse or trackpad (if you’re using a Mac desktop computer).
  • A blank 16GB or larger USB 2 flash drive. If you have one of these Mac models, you don’t need a flash drive.
* On Mac computers with APFS-formatted disks, Boot Camp requires a partition rather than a volume.

1. Find out if your Mac supports Windows 10

These Mac models support the 64-bit version of Windows 10 Home or Pro edition installed with Boot Camp. Use About This Mac to find out which Mac you have, then see if it’s on this list:
  • MacBook Pro (2012 and later)
  • MacBook Air (2012 and later)
  • MacBook (2015 and later)
  • iMac Pro (2017)
  • iMac (2012 and later)*
  • Mac mini (2012 and later)
  • Mac mini Server (Late 2012)
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013)
 2. Get a Windows disk image
You need a Microsoft Windows disk image (ISO) or installation media containing a 64-bit version of Microsoft Windows 10 Home or Pro edition. If you’re installing Windows for the first time, use a full version, not an upgrade.
When you buy Windows, it comes as a disk image file (ISO) that you download, or as an installation disc or USB flash drive. If you download Windows, make sure that you do so only from the Microsoft Software Download page. If your copy of Windows came on a DVD, you might need to create a disk image of it to work with Boot Camp. If your version of Windows came on a USB flash drive, you can download an ISO from Microsoft.

3. Open Boot Camp Assistant

Boot Camp Assistant guides you through installing Windows on your Mac. Open this app from the Utilities folder inside the Applications folder. Then follow the onscreen instructions to repartition your startup disk and download related software drivers for Windows.
If you’re prompted during installation, connect a blank USB 2 flash drive.

4. Format your Windows partition

When you complete the assistant, your Mac restarts to the Windows installer. If you’re using a flash drive or optical drive to install Windows, you’re asked where you want to install Windows. Select the BOOTCAMP partition, then click Format. If you’re not using a flash drive or optical drive, the correct partition is selected and formatted for you automatically.

5. Install Windows and Windows Support Software

Unplug any external devices, such as displays and disks, that aren’t necessary during installation. Then follow the onscreen prompts to install Windows.
When installation is complete, your Mac starts up in Windows and launches an installer for Windows Support Software. If the screen that says “Welcome to the Boot Camp installer” doesn’t appear automatically, you can install Windows Support Software manually.

6. Switch between macOS and Windows

After installing both Windows and Windows Support Software, you can switch back to macOS using the Boot Camp system tray item in Windows. Select the macOS volume, then restart your Mac.
To switch from macOS to Windows, use the Startup Disk preference pane to select the Boot Camp volume, then restart your Mac. You can also hold down the Option key after restarting your Mac to choose between macOS and Windows.

Learn more

With OS X El Capitan 10.11 or later, these models use the internal drive to temporarily store what you need to install Windows, so you don’t need a USB flash drive:
  • MacBook Pro (2015 and later)*
  • MacBook Air (2015 and later)*
  • MacBook (2015 and later)
  • iMac (2015 and later)
  • iMac Pro
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013)
For more information about using Windows on your Mac, click the Open Boot Camp Help button in Boot Camp Assistant. These resources also contain helpful information:
* These Mac models were offered with 128GB hard drives as an option. Hard drives of 256GB or more are recommended for the best experience.

  • NOTE

If you see the alert ‘Installation cannot proceed with Boot Camp configured’

This alert appears when you try to install macOS Mojave 10.14 on certain iMac models configured with 3TB hard drives. Learn about the options for installing macOS Mojave on these models.
“Installation cannot proceed with Boot Camp configured” appears when you try to install macOS Mojave on these computers that have an existing Boot Camp partition:
  • iMac (27-inch, Late 2012) with a 3TB hard drive
  • iMac (27-inch, Late 2013) with a 3TB hard drive
  • iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2014) with a 3TB hard drive
The alert appears because the existing Boot Camp Windows partition schema conflicts on these models with APFS, the file system that macOS Mojave uses.
If you have iMac (27-inch, Late 2012), you can install macOS Mojave using the steps below — but after the update, you cannot use Boot Camp to install Windows.
If you have iMac (27-inch, Late 2013) or iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2014), follow the steps below to install macOS Mojave and then install Windows with Boot Camp.

iMac (27-inch, Late 2012) with a 3TB hard drive

After you install macOS Mojave, you cannot use Boot Camp to install Windows on iMac (27-inch, Late 2012) with a 3TB hard drive.
To install macOS Mojave on this model:
  1. Back up your Windows data so that you can restore it if you install Windows on a different computer.
  2. Use Boot Camp Assistant to remove the Boot Camp partition.
  3. Install macOS Mojave.
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iMac (27-inch, Late 2013) or iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2014) with a 3TB hard drive

To install macOS Mojave and Windows 10 on these two models:
  1. Back up your Windows data.
  2. Use Boot Camp Assistant to remove the Boot Camp partition.
  3. Install macOS Mojave.
  4. Use Boot Camp Assistant to install Windows 10.*
  5. Restore your Windows data from backup, if needed.
* macOS Mojave accepts new installations of Windows 10 or later.

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