Working with Boot Camp
Step 3: Open Boot Camp
Note: You’ll now want to plug in the blank USB thumb drive into your Mac computer. Make sure the USB drive has at least 16GB of free space and uses the Master Boot Record partitioning scheme. To check the USB drive’s format, partition it, or erase any content, use your computer’s Disk Utility program. Boot Camp Assistant uses this flash drive to store all of the download media and support drivers of the operating system you wish to install.
Now that you’ve got an install drive of your desired Windows operating system, it’s time to open the Mac’s Boot Camp Assistant. To do this, simply select the Utilities folder from your Mac’s application list and open Boot Camp Assistant. Once the program opens, an introductory screen offers information on the application and also suggests creating a backup of your data before continuing with the Windows install — we highly recommend doing this. Click Continue to advance to the next screen.
After doing this a window opens asking you to select several tasks you wish Boot Camp Assistant to help you complete. To properly continue with the install, check the boxes next to Create a Windows 7 or later version install disk, Download the latest Windows support software from Apple, and Install Windows 7 or later version then click Continue.
At this point, Boot Camp Assistant copies your desired Windows operating system installation files from either an .ISO file, or a physical disc, onto the plugged in USB drive. Simply choose the location of the .ISO file and its intended destination (the USB drive) and click Continue. Boot Camp Assistant erases anything previously on the USB drive during this process, so make sure you don’t have anything important stored on it. The next screen should say Copying Windows files… and may take a while to complete; be patient even if it looks like the progress bar freezes.
Once the next window opens, Boot Camp Assistant gives you the option to choose where to save the Windows drivers and installs support software files. Simply select the USB drive you have plugged in as the destination and then click Continue. Now identify your computer’s network connection and click Continue one more time to begin the process of installing the drivers. The process of downloading the drivers could take quite a while to complete so instead of intently watching the progress bar fill up you could knit a scarf, watch an episode of Better Call Saul, or (gasp!) go outside.
Step 4: Create a partition for Windows
After the drivers complete installing, the next step is to create a partition for the new Windows installation. By default, Boot Camp Assistant assigns just 55GB of space for the Windows partition, which is enough to complete the installation but hardly anything else. To increase the GB limit for the Windows partition, simply slide the bar between the Mac OS X partition and the Windows partition until it assigns the desired amount of space. Once you finish this, click Install to complete the partition process.