While we’re stuck waiting for the “something really great” for pro users that Apple keeps promising, a lot of us are still limping along on older hardware. This is starting to present some compatibility problems, as software has started dropping support for the aging yet functional machines in our offices and studios. Case in point: Windows 8 and Boot Camp 5.
I ran Windows 8 Release Preview just fine on my “unsupported” Early 2008 Mac Pro; after some manual driver installs, it worked perfectly well. So I was excited to see official Windows 8 support roll out with OS X 10.8.3 with Boot Camp 5. I updated, downloaded Boot Camp, installed Windows 8 Pro…and then was hit with this:
This makes absolutely no sense, as I was already running this config on this system just fine. How could the official support be worse than the unofficial?
Unfortunately, this seems to be less of a technical problem and more of an arbitrary decision. That dire alert box is crap, and if you work around it you can get Windows 8 up and running on your “unsupported” hardware.
First, download Boot Camp 5 here: http://support.apple.com/kb/DL1638
Got it? Cool. Extract it.
In the BootCamp folder, you’ll see that enticing little setup file. Don’t bother with it – it’ll just lie and tell you your machine is unsupported. Instead, open up that Drivers folder, and the Apple folder inside it.
Oh look, there’s a BootCamp.msi! That’s what we want – the problem is, if you double-click it, it’ll tell you to run setup.
Setup is for chumps.
Now what we have to do is a little hack to allow us to install that msi with Elevated Privileges.
Follow this guide to edit your registry and enable the Elevated Privileges – you can deleted the created keys once you’ve installed Boot Camp.
Short version: create HKCR\Msi.Package\shell\runas with value Install &as… and HKCR\Msi.Package\shell\runas\command with value msiexec /i “%1”
Now, right-click on BootCamp.msi and select “Install as…” – the installer will fire up, no errors will pop up, and all the fancy Boot Camp stuff (including HFS+ drive reading, boot drive selection, and keyboard support) will be added to your fresh new install of Windows 8.
At least, it should be.
I’ve only tested this on my 2008 Mac Pro – your experience may vary. But as far as I can tell, I’ve got a fully functional Boot Camp 5 install.
Except, you know, for being supported.
UPDATE: Looks like my method doesn’t work for everyone, but they’ve figured out other ways around Apple’s stupidity. Check the comments below.