Mac Mini Server to Windows 7 Dual Boot

OK, I have am old Mac Mini (late 2010) that has two 500GB hard drives and on DVD. So how do I get it so that one disk is Mac OS X and the other runs Windows 7 Ultimate Edition so that I can run Windows Media Center and get my HD Homerun Prime working so I can distribute DVR content across my home. Well, it is more complicated than you think. Here are the steps:

  1. First you need to get a disk image of Windows 7 Ultimate (there are 7! different versions of Windows, but ever version beyond Home Basic has the Windows Media Center, I picked Ultimate because what the heck :-). You either have to rip it into an ISO or find it some other way.
  2. Now you get your USB flash drive and stick it into the Mac OS X. The trick here is that I don’t have any Windows machines, so I can’t do the equivalent of the old DOS (format b: /s) to get this done.
  3. Instead here is what you have to do, go to Disk Utility, and Erase the USB and make sure it is formatted as MS-DOS FAT.
  4. Now unmount the drive by choosing Unmount there.
  5. Start Boot Camp Assistant and select download drivers and this will dump a directory call “WindowsSupport”
  6. Now start the terminal and find out what is the /dev/disk number for the actual hardware with the “diskutil list” command, it should be something like /dev/disk2
  7. Now go to finder and search for iso in find and type, “dd if=”
  8. Now drag the name of your file from the Finder into your terminal windows and magically the long character file name complete this 
  9. So now the thing should look like, “dd if=/users/Name/Downloads/Windows7.iso of=/dev/disk2 bs=1m
  10. The trick is the bs=1m and when you hit enter, you will be a bootable USB key
  11. Drag and drop the WindowsSupport folder into that USB key
  12. Now reboot the Mac and hold down the option key, you should see the USB key as one of the devices to boot from.
  13. You will install windows and hopefully it has enough drivers to start running
  14. When you are done, find you USB key and run setup.exe form the WindowsSupport folder on your USB key
  15. Keep the key around in case you need it again 🙂
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