64-bit Vista on Mac Pro?
March 30, 2009 4:24 PM   Subscribe

I'm thinking of getting one of the new desktop Mac Pros recently announced. I'd like to both run Apple's OS X and also use Boot Camp to run 64-bit Windows Vista on it. The question is: will I be able to use the Mac Pro's keyboard and mouse with Vista? Will I be able to use an Apple Cinema Display with Vista?

If I have to plug in a PC keyboard and mouse, and use a PC display, that doesn't appeal. I'd like to use the 64-bit version of Windows Vista to access more 6 or 8GB of memory. I'm worried about the lack of 64-bit device drivers, esp. for the Apple keyboard, mouse and display.

I'd appreciate advice from anyone with experience or insight into this.
posted by richg to Computers & Internet (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
They're just standard peripheral devices. You could use an Apple mouse, keyboard and Cinema Display with a Hewlett Packard desktop, or a Dell.

I know a couple people who do this, just because they like the feel of the Apple peripherals.

Everything will work just fine in Boot Camp.
posted by kbanas at 4:30 PM on March 30, 2009


Other than the "special" buttons such as the Apple/Command key on a Mac keyboard, and the "Windows" button on a PC keyboard, they are one and the same. I am in fact using an external USB "PC" keyboard with my Mac right now. "64 bit drivers" (whatever that is) should not make a difference. If a "PC" keyboard works, a "Mac" keyboard will, too.

There is also no such thing as a "Mac" or a "PC" monitor or mouse. As long at your using USB, it's all the same these days. If it was 1994, it'd be a different story.

PS: Unless you are going to spend hours on end in Vista, and not need OS X, I would recommend running Parallels instead of BootCamp. Rebooting, and not being able to use both environments at the same time, is lame.
posted by bengarland at 4:31 PM on March 30, 2009


You can use a utility like KeyTweak to remap the "alt" and "apple/windows" key if you like having "alt" in the usual location for both operating systems.
posted by Phssthpok at 4:40 PM on March 30, 2009


Microsoft makes a free "PowerToy" called remapkey. It's very handy, as are the other toys.
posted by metaseeker at 4:52 PM on March 30, 2009


Apple do a driver bundle for Vista 64 bit so it will be a case of going through the usual boot camp process then installing the latest driver bundle.

Vista 64 Bit Drivers

And as people above have said the monitor will work fine
posted by moochoo at 4:52 PM on March 30, 2009


I keep two keyboards plugged into my Bootcamp Mac. I need the mac keyboard because of the hideous UI design that makes me unable to eject the dvd drive in Mac OS without the "eject" button. I need the windows keyboard for the Windows and Print Screen keys, and to type on, because the default Mac keyboard is terrible. (In windows, you can eject the dvd drive by right-clicking in Explorer)
posted by drjimmy11 at 4:57 PM on March 30, 2009


drjimmy11: Hold down F12 to eject the DVD drive on keyboards without an Eject key.
posted by zsazsa at 5:04 PM on March 30, 2009


Or drag the DVD icon to the trash.
posted by zsazsa at 5:06 PM on March 30, 2009


drjimmy11: Come on now, the Eject button on the keyboard is -- by far -- not the only way to eject a DVD/CD on a Mac. You're just spreading BS.

Try these methods:

Click the eject button next to the disc icon in the Finder sidebar

Right-click (oh shit!) on the disc icon the Finder sidebar and choose "Eject"

Select the disc icon in the Finder and choose File-->Eject (or hit CMD-E)

Drag the disc icon to the Trash

Open the Terminal and type: diskutil eject /dev/disk1
posted by bengarland at 5:09 PM on March 30, 2009


Or click on the drive and hit Command-E (my personal favorite).
posted by sbutler at 5:09 PM on March 30, 2009


You can also add an eject button to the menu bar.
posted by xil at 5:14 PM on March 30, 2009


I would ditch the Apple mouse and just get a decent PC mouse, the Mac keyboard isn't bad but I would probably still use a PC keyboard and just remap the keys in OSX. As long as you stick with standard devices, you shouldn't have any trouble with drivers.
posted by sophist at 7:00 AM on March 31, 2009


Funny how disc ejection is the contentious issue. My experience is exactly the opposite: the keyboard eject button is the ONE thing that DOESN'T work under Windows on a Mac Pro, and I'm forced to select the eject option in Explorer.
posted by rlk at 7:26 AM on March 31, 2009


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